St Paul’s Diploma

The Diploma is uniquely designed with St Paul’s students in mind and best prepares students for the rigours of Years 12 and 13 and life beyond the school gates.

What is the St Paul’s Diploma? The St Paul’s Diploma is a six-subject course of learning specifically designed to prepare Year 11 students by providing a curriculum that:

  • Focuses on aakonga (students) and caters for a range of learners
  • Looks to celebrate and reward academic success for all ability levels
  • Pushes students academically to reach their potential and prepare for Level 2 NCEA and above
  • Engages students with robust content and delivery
  • Offers a breadth of subjects

The Diploma is uniquely St Paul’s and not only prepares students for Years 12 and 13 but also for life skills and work ethics which are essential in society. The progress and achievement of students are measured and transparent while mirroring the values and principles of the New Zealand Curriculum.

Why do we have a specialised curriculum?
The staff and leadership team recognized that the St Paul’s Diploma was needed to better equip students for NCEA Levels 2 and 3 and Scholarship Examinations. The Diploma allows students to access a range of assessment types as part of that preparation.

Unlike the NCEA Level 1, the St Paul’s Diploma offers students the opportunity to specialise in chosen areas. For example, a student might choose to study either General Science or specialise in Chemistry, Biology, or Physics. Or students might opt for Financial Literacy, Economics or Business Studies. These additional options provide students with more choices to pursue their passion path in Year 12.

What is the assessment structure?
Individual subjects have four assessments worth eight points each. It is compulsory for all Year 11 students to take six subjects, therefore 192 available points. To pass the Year 11 St Paul’s Diploma, students must accumulate 100 points. Students aiming for honours must achieve a minimum of 155 points. Additionally, students must maintain an 85% attendance rate.

What subjects are available and how many will I take during Year 11?
Year 11 students will choose six subjects including compulsory subjects English, Maths and at least one Science. It includes modules on Careers, Taha Wairua, Health and Wellbeing, Maatauranga Maaori and Critical Thinking to help promote well-rounded and independent students. For a full list of available subjects, please visit our webpage here (take to course choice booklet).

How do students receive the Diploma?
There will be a graduation ceremony at the end of each year to acknowledge those who receive the Diploma and Honours.

What if I start at St Paul’s during Year 12?
Having a St Paul’s Diploma is not a requirement to enter Year 12.

Can I take Year 12 subjects during Year 11?
Under special circumstances and at the discretion of the Deputy Headmaster, Curriculum and Assessment, students may be able to take Year 12 subjects during Year 11.

Can I take Cambridge (IGCSE) in Year 11?
We do not offer Cambridge Examinations at Year 11. However, students can take the St Paul’s course that will prepare them for Year 12 and 13 Cambridge Examinations (Mathematics and English only).