And Education secretary Gail Townsend says they should all be extremely proud of what they have achieved.
Preliminary NCEA results were released by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority on Monday, and an initial analysis carried out by the Ministry of Education.
Townsend says while there are always small annual fluctuations, the annual NCEA results at all levels are tracking above target, and are also becoming more consistent.
“The number of students attaining their qualification with merit and excellence endorsement is particularly significant.”
To gain such an endorsement, students had to demonstrate more than just “knowing” something but also show how they could apply knowledge and think critically about options and outcomes, she said.
“Our teachers have again done a superb job preparing their students well to demonstrate what they have learnt.”
Parents must also be commended for supporting their children, Townsend said.
“That’s not just at exam time but throughout the year as internal assessment are completed. Where a strong partnership between the school and home exists, students will benefit and this is obvious from these results.”
As parents and the wider community had built their understanding about how NCEA worked, the Education ministry was finding that parents were asking good, critical questions about their child’s progress, Townsend added.
Prime minister and Education minister Henry Puna congratulated all of the young Cook Islanders who had worked hard during 2016 and with the release of NCEA results, had seen the outcome of that hard work.
“To all the teachers and those who support our young people, their families and communities, thank you for your professionalism, commitment, support, interest and belief in the next generation. When we all work together, as a Cook Islands community, great things can be achieved. I wish all of our students the very, very best for 2017”
NCEA is a qualification of the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, and students at Cook Islands colleges can qualify here for both local and New Zealand based tertiary or vocational courses with the same entrance qualifications as students living and studying in New Zealand.
A Ministry of Education analysis shows that a student studying here in the Cook Islands has a better chance of achieving their secondary school qualification than a Cook Islands student in New Zealand.
Students can access their results online. Those who cannot get on line should call their school or contact the ministry for their results.
Charts listing preliminary results compared with previous years will feature in CI News on Friday.