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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 3M ago

Thank you for your support in following our NZ Education News blog. We have made some changes behind the scenes and from Monday 8 April we will no longer be updating this blog.

The good news is that we will continue to provide up-to-date articles, opinions and media releases on the education sector in Aotearoa New Zealand. To continue to receive your updates (if you have not done so already) all you have to do is email comms@nzcer.org.nz and ask to be put on the new Aotearoa New Zealand Education News list.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 3M ago

University of Auckland tops global rankings for sustainability

The University of Auckland has been ranked number one in a new global ranking that assesses the social and economic impact of universities.

Manukau Institute of Technology to build new $55m trade training school

Auckland is about to get a new $55 million trade training school to help meet the desperate shortage of tradies.

Toilets, communication to be reviewed after schools’ lockdown during Christchurch shootings

Toileting, food and water provisions, and communication with parents will be included in a review of schools’ lockdown procedures following the Christchurch shootings.

Schools don’t have enough room to accommodate every NCEA exam being online

Simple requirements like a power source could put a strain on space when it comes to online NCEA exams. The digital age of student exams is dawning, but New Zealand schools don’t yet have the space to cope with all tests going online by 2020.

Security concerns force cancellation of Muslim schoolgirls’ outdoor education trip, so programme comes to them

A warm gesture from the Sir Peter Blake Marine Education Programme for Auckland’s Al-Madinah School.

Boom times in Cambridge puts pressure on schools’ rolls

Cambridge’s bullish economy and leafy village lifestyle are attracting record numbers of families to the Waikato town.

Opinion Auckland Grammar principal: Education Hubs would be a disaster for schools

A review of the school system has recommended sweeping changes, most controversially the implementation of a new organisation structure based around centralised Education Hubs. Auckland Grammar principal Tim O’Connor thinks that’s a terrible idea.

Media releases Young Women’s Activation and Innovation funds launched

NZGovt: Sport New Zealand is investing $1 million across the Young Women’s Activation Fund and the Innovations for Young Women Fund. Initiatives that specifically target young women aged 12 to 18 will be eligible. The funds are a direct result of the Women and Girls in Sport and Active Recreation Strategy launched by the Government in October last year.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 3M ago

NZQA abandons bid to put NCEA for non-literary subjects online by 2020

Exam authorities have abandoned attempts to put senior school exams online by next year for non-literary subjects such as maths, science and geography.

The NZ Qualifications Authority (NZQA) says trials have discovered that students found it difficult to draw mathematical symbols, formulas, diagrams and maps online.

Preschools change food policy after toddler brain-damaged choking on apple

A toddler left brain-damaged after choking on a piece of apple at daycare has prompted a food policy change at more than 120 preschools across New Zealand.

‘Trigger warnings’ do little to reduce distress, research finds

Students are increasingly asking for trigger warnings on university course content. However, research from the University of Waikato found those words did little to insulate students from a video of a car crash.

The art of making us a healthier and happier nation

A national network which focuses on the links between the arts, creativity and wellbeing has been launched in Wellington.

Call for guidelines on children’s screen use

A parents’ group is calling for official guidelines on the amount of time children spend on screens in New Zealand schools. The group has set up a new website, sensiblescreenuse.org, which argues that “moderate” use of computers is good for children, but too much is bad for them.

Indian students wait for refunds after NZQA closes NZ Institute of Technical Training (NITT)

Students at a private Manukau business school are still waiting for refunds after the school was closed by the NZ Qualifications Authority.

The authority deregistered the NZ Institute of Technical Training, known as NITT, on Friday after it failed to refund fees to 67 students in business courses whose accreditation was withdrawn on March 18 because of faulty marking.

Children gardening, cooking and cleaning at school

Garden to Table allows Kiwi kids to grow fruit and vegetables at school and cook nutritious meals for their classmates that they may never touch at home.

Opinion Terrifying words for schools: The ministry’s here to help

Ronald Reagan once said the most terrifying words in the English language were “I’m from the government and I’m here to help”. I didn’t believe him until I read the 2019 Tomorrow’s Schools Review and Report (TSRR).

Tomorrow’s Schools: Beware equity over excellence

Victoria University Chancellor Neil Paviour-Smith has warned of focusing on equity “at the expense of excellence” in response to the proposed Tomorrow’s Schools reforms.

Media releases Vocational education reforms critical to aged care

Aged Care Association: The New Zealand Aged Care Association (NZACA) supports the Government’s approach to reforms of the vocational education and training system.

News by kids, for kids

NZ On Air: News by kids, for kids to increase young New Zealanders’ understanding of the world around them. Primary aged tamariki will soon have their own news to help them understand the world around them and become informed young citizens.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 3M ago

Importance of lockdown drills heightened following Christchurch mosque shooting, says principal

Mike Dowd, chair of the New Plymouth Principals’ Association and principal of St Joseph’s Catholic School, said the region used Ministry of Education guidance, but did not advise schools to do any extra lockdown drills following the events of March 15.

What too much screen time can do to children

Alarm bells are ringing for New Zealand health professionals who say that current levels of screen use in schools and for homework are putting children’s physical and mental development in jeopardy.

Father threatens legal action if school keeps using essential oils in class

An Auckland primary school has pulled therapeutic diffusers from the classroom after a high court threat from a parent who said the essential oils could trigger asthma attacks.

‘Dirty secret’: more than 60 schools still burning coal for heating

More than 60 schools still burn coal for heating despite it being harmful to health and a massive contributor to climate change.

Science, myths and skepticism: Meet the researcher surveying Kiwis’ beliefs

If New Zealanders understood science better, they would make more informed choices about health and the environment.

Opinion

Humanities, humanness, and vocational education

Tina Smith, nursing tutor, UCOL talks about the future of vocational
education and the need for humanities teaching

Media releases

Primary teachers and principals to vote on new offers

NZEI: Primary teachers and principals begin online voting today on whether to accept the latest offers from the Ministry of Education.

Universities call for effective regulation of social media

Universities New Zealand – Te Pokai Tara: New Zealand’s universities are joining the Privacy Commissioner and major corporate advertisers in calling for more effective regulation of and responsiveness from social media platforms.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 4M ago

Nationwide secondary teachers’ strike called off after Christchurch terror attack

Calling off next week’s nationwide teachers’ strike was “the only choice” following the Christchurch terror attack, a union president says.

About 17,000 secondary school teachers planned to strike on April 3 but Post Primary Teachers’ Association (PPTA) president Jack Boyle said schools needed support, not further disruption.

Outspoken Northland principal Pat Newman joins Teaching Council

Newman, the principal of decile-2 Hora Hora School in Whangārei, has been a leading critic of Government policies such as the new rules on child restraint. He is one of seven people elected to the Teaching Council in the first elections held since the Labour Government restored elections for the body, which were scrapped by former Education Minister Hekia Parata in 2013.

More time needed after Christchurch shootings for Tomorrow’s Schools Review feedback, politician says

Calls to extend the feedback period over the Tomorrow’s Schools Review have been made in the wake of the Christchurch shootings. ACT leader David Seymour is the latest to  ask Education Minister Chris Hipkins to push the April 7 date back by a fortnight.

Urgent funding needed to lift education workers to legal minimum wage next week

NZEI Te Riu Roa President Lynda Stuart says the Government needs to urgently contribute new funding to resource schools and ECE services to pay the new rates, as Budget 2018 only increased their operational funding by 1.6 per cent.

New course set to bring science to life for South Island high school students

Taking high school students to the sea, caves, mountains and rivers will make up part of a new course in environmental science for teenagers in the top of the South Island, run by charitable trust, Whenua Iti Outdoors.

Wellington City Council officially opposes Victoria University name change

The Wellington City Council has backed opposition to Victoria University of Wellington’s proposed name change.

Opinion Dr Liz Gordon: Exclusionary principles

Exclusive property for sale! Exclusive offer! Exclusive Brethren!  Exclusive school! Wherever we look, the politics of exclusion dominates the physical and political landscape.  And while it may be argued by some that ‘exclusive’ does not really mean ‘exclusion’, a quick look shows that it really, really does.  It defines social hierarchies, enables bullying and corruption and strongly demarcates social class, gender and ethnic boundaries.

Jennifer Orman: Taskforce lacks a solid case for taking over schools

As a parent concerned about the radical changes to school governance proposed by the Tomorrow’s Schools Review Taskforce, I attended a public consultation meeting at Rangitoto College one evening. This meeting revealed the lack of evidence to support the taskforce recommendations to remove all genuine powers from parent-elected school boards and transfer these powers to bureaucratic Education Hubs.

They’ll be encouraged and supported – why I am sending my daughters to a girls’ school

Why not give them six years to build their confidence and tenacity without having to also deal with the boy/girl divide?

Media releases NZEI urges government to properly resource any school reform

NZEI: In a white paper, NZEI Te Riu Roa National Secretary Paul Goulter says educators strongly agree with the Tomorrow’s Schools taskforce’s conclusion that the overall amount of resourcing for schools is not sufficient.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 4M ago

Schools launch $20000-plus campaign against Tomorrow’s Schools reforms

The “Community Schools Alliance”, backed by 43 of the country’s 2431 state and integrated schools, opposes a scheme by a task force led by former principal Bali Haque for about 20 regional “hubs” to take over most powers from elected school boards.

Kiwi students encouraged to draw, paint and Speak 4 The Planet

They might be small but their message is loud: The environment needs our help, stat.

For the first time in New Zealand, children have been invited to compete in a speech and art competition and have their say on initiatives to try tackle climate change, a hot button issue for young people.

Children’s book includes ‘troubling’ stereotypes, including Māori as ‘savages’

A children’s book depicting “troubling” stereotypes and historically inaccurate information lacks the “moral responsibility” expected of its author and publisher, critics have claimed.

Workload too much for Manawatū principal

​Burn out and stress has caused a Manawatū principal to give up her job. Experienced principal Margie Sutherland has worked in education for 38 years, including three years as principal of Bunnythorpe School.

Wellington’s Victoria University defers action over name change decision which could see it legal challenged

Victoria University of Wellington has called in the lawyers but is staying quiet, for now, over whether it will take the Education Minister to court over the decision to reject its name change proposal.

Opinion Tomorrow when the war began

A growing group of schools across the country have launched a coordinated opposition to the Tomorrow’s Schools proposed changes, but the campaign is full of misinformation.

Grant Davidson: Industry training plan ultimatum not consultation

As a chief executive of an industry training organisation I had welcomed the review into vocational education in this country. Industry training is a high-performing sector but there’s room to improve and we’re looking to do that. I looked forward to honest and innovative conversations that identified problems, co-created possible solutions, looked at international best practice and evaluated the best options.

Tomorrow’s School Review – little to lose and much to gain

The report is as courageous as it is polarizing and whilst the report and recommendations are detailed, they can, in their relative brevity, leave enough space to enable some to presume the worst. The recent months have seen many responses which represent a diverse range of voices and views – the loudest of which seem to be those driven by ideological positions and a desire to continue to reap the benefits of one’s “luck” and protecting the advantages that come with a well-resourced school and a well-heeled community.

Media releases Future schooling to meet the needs of all New Zealanders

Tomorrow’s Schools: “With consultation closing 7 April 2019, now is the time to put pen to paper and have your say on the reports’ recommendations,” says Bali Haque, Chair of the Independent Taskforce.

Aspirations of Māori students boosted by Waikato initiative

Smart Waikato: Latest surveys of students participating in Smart Waikato’s award-winning Secondary School Employer Partnerships (SSEP) in 2018 show 78 percent of 704 respondents from 18 schools said SSEP activities made them more interested in the school subject area.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 4M ago

Industry training organisations say students will suffer under polytech merger

While the union for polytechnic staff is backing the government’s plan to mergepolytechnics and institutes of technology, industry training organisations say students and apprentices will suffer.

Kenyan who gave earnings to poor wins $1m teacher prize

A Kenyan teacher from a remote village who gave away most of his earnings to the poor won a US$1 million prize on Sunday for his work teaching in a government-run school that has just one computer and shoddy Internet access.

K’aute Pasifika founder Peta Karalus went from homesick nursing trainee to honoured Pasifika leader

She started her life in New Zealand as a painfully homesick teenager at nursing school.

Decades later, Leaupepe Peta Karalus set up Pasifika-focussed service K’aute Pasifika in Hamilton, and led the development of a network around it.

The mindfulness coach changing Kiwi kids’ lives by teaching them meditatation

Do you remember what would happen to the “difficult” kids at school?

How, after a class interruption or one too many cheeky comments, they’d be sent out of the classroom to the principal’s office, where whatever knot of anger that was inside them would just grow and grow?

Well, there’s an alternative. What if, instead of being told off, the student was sent to a quiet, calm room where a staff member would discuss their feelings with them and lead them in some breathing exercises or meditation before sending them back to class?

Auckland private girls’ school revises uniform policy after hijab backlash

An Auckland private girls’ school has “revised” its uniform policy and now allows its students to wear the hijab after a public backlash.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 4M ago

Primary teachers to vote on Ministry of Education’s offers in electronic ballot

Members of the primary teachers’ and principals’ union will vote on the Ministry of Education’s latest offers in an electronic ballot, New Zealand Educational Institute (NZEI) Te Riu Roa announced. NZEI’s national executive decided to move to an electronic ballot following a teleconference held on Wednesday night.

Industry training bodies threaten High Court and Waitangi Tribunal challenges to shakeup

Skills Active, which runs training for recreation and performing arts, has told Education Minister Chris Hipkins it will seek a judicial review of his actions in the High Court unless he extends the consultation deadline for the shakeup until June 30.

Councillors fear for the future of NMIT under Government overhaul

Concerns that the region’s biggest tertiary institute could lose courses, staff and money have prompted a call for the Nelson City Council to take action.

School lockdown review after Christchurch mosque horror

School lockdown procedures will be reviewed urgently after desperate parents were unable to reach their children following the Christchurch mosque attacks.

Christchurch schools seek support in aftermath of mosque shooting

Christchurch schools have reached out for support as they come to terms with the hours-long lockdown during the city’s attacks.

Linwood Ave primary school principal says all his students are back to school a week on from the shootings

Blair Dravitski told Breakfast even though they’re in school, they’re coping in different ways.

Preschoolers making sense of Christchurch terror attacks through play

In the wake of the Christchurch terror attacks, young children are trying to make sense of things they don’t understand through play, preschool teachers say.

Jobs cut, new roles created at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa

A restructure of the wānanga was announced in October following a disappointing review by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority and a forecasted deficit. Chief executive Te Ururoa Flavell said the restructure had been largely completed, with 133 roles disestablished and 98 new roles created.

New Zealand: Diocesan School for Girls slammed over hijab ban

One of Auckland’s most exclusive private schools is copping criticism for a ban on the hijab, which it says violates the school dress code.

Opinion Brian Fallow: On climate change, the kids are all right

Before it became a day of horror and heartbreak, last Friday was for a few hours a day of hope.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 4M ago

Nation-wide teachers’ union meeting called off out of respect for Christchurch victims

The paid teachers’ union meeting on Tuesday has been postponed in respect for all Christchurch victims and their families.

Dunedin pupils fearful about going to school

The grip of terror on Muslim pupils in Dunedin is so strong that the majority did not turn up for school yesterday – and a girl who did turn up declined to wear her traditional headscarf for fear of being identified as Muslim.

The internet is radicalizing white men. Big tech could be doing more

There is still much we don’t know about the suspect and his background. But before anything at all was known about him, anyone who has studied or covered extremism and these kinds of attacks could have given you an educated guess about what kind of person he was: Male. Probably in his 20s. Decent chance of at least a minor criminal record. More than likely a history of hatred toward or violence against women. Oh, and one more thing — probably spent a fair amount of time on the internet.

Schools reach out from both sides to heal divisions after Christchurch mosque shootings

Auckland school students are visiting their local mosques, and a Muslim school is opening its doors to the community, as schools across the country seek ways to heal the community after the mosque attacks in Christchurch.

The future finds its voice

Young people are angry. Faced with global inaction over increasingly dire climate change forecasts, frustrated and fearful youth worldwide have seized the activist mantle. Bruce Munro examines the insurgent youth-led climate action phenomenon.

School climate strikes: Why kids around the world skipped school on March 15

The movement, inspired by the actions of 16-year-old Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg, spanned more than 100 countries and 1,500 cities, where students gathered in the streets and at their state capitols to call for action.

Sex, drugs and Peppa Pig: Why you can’t trust YouTube with your kids

The YouTube video starts with a popular British children’s cartoon character, Peppa Pig, introducing herself and her family, but there are signs of trouble almost immediately. During the ninth second, Peppa’s mother opens her mouth and shouts, “Smoke weed!”

After years of vowing to police inappropriate content, YouTube continues to deliver violent imagery, drug references, sexually suggestive sequences and foul, racially charged language in clips that reach children at a troubling pace, say researchers, parents and consumer groups.

Admissions scandals: Would you cheat for your child’s education?

As more than 40 people are charged in an American university admissions scam, Guy Kelly investigates how far parents will go.

Schools change policy banning Afros after criticism of ‘institutional racism’

Auckland Grammar School has removed Afros from its list of banned hairstyles, three weeks after experts slammed the policy as “racist” and “discriminatory”.

Opinion My daughter’s school was wrong to talk about mosque shooting to her before I had the chance

Around Monday lunchtime a “special newsletter” pinged in my personal inbox, telling me that my daughter’s Auckland primary school had held a special assembly to show respect for those killed or wounded in the Christchurch mosque terror attack.

However, as I later discovered, his talk had also included the fact that a large number of people had been killed or wounded in their church by someone who didn’t like their religion. Which is not how I would have chosen to explain it to her, when I’d decided to explain it to her. Which I hadn’t found a way to do – yet.

‘Over simplistic’ model lacks understanding

Excellent vocational education requires effective regional partnerships.

Media releases Ministry of Education working to support schools

Ministry of Education: We are providing support to schools, kura and early learning services in the wake of Friday’s shocking event in Christchurch.

Iwi leaders tell government: hands off the ITOs!

Te Rautaki Whakaroopu Maori: Representatives from 28 iwi gathered last Thursday and agreed the proposed Reform of Vocational Education was being rushed through, and called on the government to extend the consultation period and engage with Māori to involve them in the changes.

Making a difference for a lifetime

New Zealand Kindergartens: Early childhood education makes a difference for a lifetime and New Zealand Kindergartens (NZK) commends the Government for developing a 10-year strategic plan to ensure high quality early childhood education provision.

National Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards

Ako Aotearoa: Ako Aotearoa believes that teaching and learning of the highest quality is evidenced daily in organisations right cross our tertiary sector. To reflect that, the 2019 round of the National Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards is going through its greatest change since 2002.

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NZ Education News by Nzeducationnews - 4M ago

Schools to reopen following city-wide lockdown during shootings at Christchurch mosques

Schools will reopen in Christchurch on Monday, with the exception of Hagley College, which is acting as a welfare centre for the mosque shootings. See also: Dealing with children’s trauma RNZ  Nine to noon audio: Christchurch GP and youth advocate Dr Sue Bagshaw discusses aftermath for children.

Tens of thousands of school students demonstrate across NZ calling for action on climate change

From Southland to the Bay of Islands, tens of thousands of school pupils took to the streets today demanding action on climate change. See also: Climate change protests: Will we let the kids down?

Education Hubs sensible and overdue

The hubs will allow schools to address issues of equity and excellence that have beset the sector for too long, writes Wakefield School principal Peter Verstappen. See also: Richard Dykes: Task force is wrong, our schools are not a ‘failed experiment’

Tomorrow’s Schools reform: School principals unite to fight ‘hub’ takeover

A plan for regional “hubs” to take powers from elected school boards of trustees faces a growing backlash, with two groups of schools uniting to fight it.

Schools ease NZ children’s ‘epidemic of anxiety’

Schools are stepping up to ease an “epidemic of anxiety” among their students, smashing a taboo that teachers shouldn’t be social workers.

Auckland school rugby boycott drama to ‘explode’ again

The playground fight over 1st XV rugby involving some of the country’s most powerful schools is about to get a whole lot uglier.

Large numbers turnout across Taranaki for annual seaweek event

For the first time, Experiencing Marine Reserves brought their snorkel programme to South Taranaki with a pool snorkel trail held at the Hāwera Aquatic Centre where over 30 participants of all ages attended.

Media releases Trailblazing role brings Te Reo to digital classrooms

Taitokeru Education Trust: In a first for New Zealand education, a cluster of Northland schools now has its own Rumaki and Reo Rua facilitator.

Minister, explain how people and quality jobs fit in your vision

Michael Gilchrist, TEU: New Zealand’s current vocational education and training system needs to change. There is broad agreement about that.

Bipartisan approach to early childhood education sector

Te Rito Maioha Early Childhood New Zealand: keen to see bipartisan approach to early childhood education sector

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