Rāpare 7 o Hui-tanguru

Simon Bridges explains plan to tour NZ, holding 40 public meetings on the future of education

The National party leader says his main focus is on getting a clear sense of what Kiwis think about the Tomorrow’s Schools review.

Telford offered one-year lifeline as SIT takes over

Education Minister Chris Hipkins has agreed to a proposal from Invercargill’s SIT to take over the Telford campus of the Taratahi Agricultural Centre for this year.

Broad political agreement to teach NZ history and Treaty of Waitangi in schools, with caveats

There seems to be a consensus across the political spectrum about the need for schools to actively teach the Treaty of Waitangi in the context of New Zealand history, but with caveats.

Boy is responsible when schoolmate deliberately destroys his laptop

Schools are increasingly expecting parents to fork out to provide digital devices like laptops and Chromebooks as they move into an era of digital teaching, but they are keen not to be held liable for any damage to those devices.

School set to be biggest in South Is

Shotover Primary School is set to become the biggest primary school in the South Island, once a large-scale building project is finished next year.

Instagram releases guide for New Zealand parents

A Parent’s Guide to Instagram” is an initiative by the social media giant and online safety organisation Netsafe. It gives parents tips to help their children protect themselves online – whether they have 20 followers or 200,000.

Childcare centre closed indefinitely following allegations of mistreating children

Allegations about staff at the Hutt Hospital Childcare Centre emerged in late-2018. The centre remains closed indefinitely.



Editorial: Let’s go back to the future

If you’re looking for something to do on the day we celebrate the birth of a vibrant, young nation, you could take a peek at the New Zealand Curriculum. It’s the blueprint for how we teach our children and future leaders, from year 1 all the way to year 13.

On the contents page you’ll find references to “learning areas”. The usual subjects are there: English, maths and science; there’s also mention of the arts, physical education and technology. But not one reference to history.

Media releases


Southern Institute of Technology (SIT) to take over Telford

NZGovt: Education Minister Chris Hipkins has agreed to a proposal from the Southern Institute of Technology (SIT) to take over the Telford campus of the Taratahi Agricultural Centre


Rāhina 4 o Hui-tanguru, Monday 4 February

‘Bums on seats’ approach puts children at risk in early childhood education centres, teachers say

Parents are sold the idea their children are safe and happy in early childhood education centres – but that’s not always the case, some teachers say.

‘Every child a taonga’

A presentation of the Ministry of Education’s strategic plan for early learning was delivered to educators in Gisborne this week. Education Minister Chris Hipkins launched the draft plan, He taonga te tamaiti (Every child a taonga), in November. It sets the direction for early learning for the next 10 years and is open for consultation until March 15.

NCEA course in how to be a police officer launches in three Wellington schools

Three Wellington schools have kicked off NCEA-level police studies aimed at building relationships between the thin blue line and Māori and Pasifika youth.

English teaching volunteers help launch new life for new Kiwis

English Language Partners (ELP), is a group that helps train volunteers, giving them a recognised qualification and pairing them with migrants and refugees.

Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust faces $549,000 legal costs claim

Toni Waho, a former Palmerston North school principal, took the Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust to court after it removed him for allegedly bringing the trust into disrepute.



Opinion: Ag Training in the Wairarapa – adapting for the future

After much disappointment from the community, industry and local leaders around the liquidation of Taratahi, what is critical now is that we collectively look forward to how we can best provide for agricultural training and skills in the Wairarapa.

John Roughan: Education does not need to restrain the strong

It’s a long time since I read anything quite as chilling as this: “Those schools that don’t need it also have obligations to other schools in the system, and they need to contribute their expertise to other schools. They need to be part of the system.”

Hinemoa Elder: Reclaiming te reo Maori is an ongoing battle

It’s been quite a week or so for those of us playing our part in nurturing our Māori language.

Media releases


“Give me my History!” – petition

History Teachers Association: NZ History Teachers’ Association petition calling for the coherent teaching in schools of our shared past.

National academy of top researchers and scholars turns 100

Royal Society Te Apārangi: Royal Society Te Apārangi is celebrating he kotahi rau one hundred years of electing Fellows (Ngā Ahurei a Te Apārangi) to its Academy this month.


Rāmere 1 o Hui-tanguru, Friday 1 February

Teacher shortage: Taxpayers pay $10,000 for each overseas teacher to fill gaps in schools

A massive drive to recruit foreign teachers to fill gaps in schools is costing taxpayers about $10,000 for every teacher recruited. The Ministry of Education has approved overseas relocation grants worth $1.3 million for 200 foreign teachers and 81 returning Kiwis since December 2017.

One third of children regularly miss school

More than 250,000 New Zealand students regularly missed school last year, with year 13 girls taking the most time off. The latest Ministry of Education attendance survey showed regular attendance declined notably in the secondary school years, plummeting to 41.7 per cent in year 13 girls.

Kiwi students’ grades drop due to online shopping, gaming and social media use at school

New Zealand’s largest secondary school has reported a drop in student academic performance due to students using their devices in class to shop, game or follow social media.

“Common language” needed to keep kids safe online

Schools and parents are being urged to work together to help keep children safe online, as more children head back to school with a laptop or tablet.

The stigma of a system that ‘fat shames’ Māori and Pasifika people

Western medicine says many Māori and most Pasifika people are obese. Some people are angry about the system that ‘fat-shames’ them in this way. Others are focused on finding solutions that actually work.

Bullying claims ignored at girls school

Claims of physical abuse and bullying at a large girls’ school have been poorly handled and dismissed by staff, former students say. Farah Hancock spoke to their parents about what happened, and the ensuing exodus of girls to a nearby school.

International students more than ‘cash cows’, says minister after $531,000 wellbeing announcement

Issues related to mental health and safety have seen the Government inject $531,000 into 10 projects to support international students.

Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced the funding on Tuesday as part of the International Student Wellbeing Strategy, which he said improved students’ experiences in New Zealand.

Lawyer slams PM Jacinda Ardern over broken ‘promises’ to deported Indian students

The lawyer for a group of Indian students deported from New Zealand over fake visas has slammed Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern for her silence after she promised to help them should Labour win the 2017 election.

Whitireia/WelTec programmes canned a month before students return to studies

Students will likely be scrambling to enrol into courses after the Whitireia/WelTec polytechnic scrapped four of its programmes about a month ahead of its academic year.

Christchurch teacher used ‘unacceptable’ physical force against 5-year-old boy, tribunal finds

A Christchurch teacher has been censured after pulling a 5-year-old boy by the arm.



Parents, you’re pushing the wrong career paths on your kids

It’s time to stop asking our young people what they want to do when they grow up and, while you’re at it, stop stressing about your child’s NCEA results.

Kate Hawkesby: Time to update our antiquated school system and values

I’ve always believed the school system we’re sending our kids through is antiquated and needs to evolve to be more diverse and relevant.

Now I see a co-author of a book titled, ‘Don’t worry about the robots: How to survive and thrive in the new world of work’ is saying largely the same thing.

Editorial: School holidays need to consider working parents

The school holidays have run later than usual for many families this summer. Some schools have returned this week but many are waiting until Monday and some will not restart classes until Thursday, after Waitangi Day.

Media releases


When will Ministry act on early childhood teacher shortage?

Early Childhood New Zealand: With the first term of this school year about to begin, there have been several news stories on the teacher recruitment challenges that schools are facing. What these articles forget to mention are the similar challenges being faced by early childhood education services and centres.


Rāapa 30 o Kohitātea, Wednesday 30 January

More schools delay start dates to avoid the heat

No statistics are available, but several principals say they have opted not to start classes until after Waitangi Day because of the heat at this time of year, combined with parents wanting to work up till Christmas at the other end of the year.

Teacher mental health suffers amid shortage crisis

While there’s a growing focus on student mental health, educators say the teacher shortage crisis is taking a toll on their own mental wellbeing. Those who left the profession in 2018 have detailed the stress, workload and lack of work-life balance as reasons for quitting.

Teacher shortage: One in six Auckland schools starting year with vacancies

The Education Gazette lists 134 vacancies spread across 87 Auckland schools, 15 per cent of the region’s 565 schools. However the teacher shortage appears to have eased since this time last year, when 108 Auckland schools, or one in five schools, were still advertising for teachers.

Charity feeds thousands of school children each week

One in five children in low decile schools is heading to school hungry, KidsCan says.

‘Horrendous’ cost of school uniforms sparks call for government action

Back-to-school costs are getting harder for many families. A charitable trust is urging the Government to step in to help.

Hundreds of Māori students missing out on education programme

An academic course for Māori high school students is proving so popular there’s a waiting list to join. But there is little hope they’ll be able to sign up next year because the Ministry of Education won’t fund the programme.

Six-year-old girl donates school supplies instead of receiving birthday presents

Summer Wilkinson refused presents for her sixth birthday party, and instead collected school supplies for children in need.

Bike it Forward campaign: Call to donate unwanted bikes to help kids

In the Bike it Forward campaign, Bike Barn is asking New Zealanders to donate bicycles their children have outgrown or no longer use. Donated bikes will be given an overhaul by Bike Barn mechanics and then given to less advantaged kids and schools around the country, through the TRYathlon Foundation.



The long game that is international education

 If we look at other parts of the world, it is clear what international education contributes – and has the potential to contribute. We need to ensure that the full contribution of international education is recognised here too, and that the valuable role education plays in internationalisation and connecting New Zealand with the rest of the world is understood and embraced.

Media releases


Teacher supply

MoE: In October 2018, the Government released an expanded teacher supply package to meet forecast the rising level of demand. This focused on meeting the immediate need through a blend of initiatives to increase supply of New Zealand trained teachers as well as provide a pool of qualified overseas trained teachers. Currently, our recruiters are working to fill 281 lodged roles, of which 152 are in Auckland. These 281 roles are for Term 1.

Rāhina 28 o Kohitātea, Monday 28 January

Teachers’ unions tight-lipped on potential strike action as students return to school

The New Zealand Educational Institute (NZEI) Te Riu Roa and Post Primary Teachers’ Association (PPTA) signalled the possibility of sector-wide industrial action before the Christmas holiday break but have come into the New Year tight-lipped about a Term 1 mega strike.

Epic battle starts over Tomorrow’s Schools reforms

It was designed to let schools offer a variety of kinds of education and then let the “consumers” (students and their parents) choose between them. But in practice, under the 1989 Tomorrow’s Schools system, families have chosen based mainly on the wealth of their communities – their decile ratings.

Culturally responsive teaching in a globalized world

In this increasingly globalized landscape, schools face significant challenges. Researchers have documented lower educational outcomes such as student achievement and graduation rates for immigrant students in the majority of countries around the world.

In response to these outcomes, more research is being devoted to understanding and supporting conditions for equitable learning. Culturally responsive teaching (CRT) is one idea to support these conditions. CRT is concerned with teaching methods and practices that recognize the importance of including students’ cultural backgrounds in all aspects of learning.

Telford students poised to hear minister’s verdict

A proposal from the Southern Institute of Technology (SIT) to take over Telford from beleaguered Taratahi Agricultural Training Centre went to Education Minister Chris Hipkins on Friday, and will be considered in cabinet on Monday.

The robots are coming – can we be friends with them?

Voice-controlled artificial intelligence systems, and even robots, have become more common in our everyday lives; from Siri, Apple’s “intelligent personal assistant”, to WoeBot, the chatbot therapist, to Travelmate, the suitcase that uses GPS to stay close to your connected smartphone.

As they proliferate, how should we properly address, and relate, to these virtual beings?

South Auckland school scraps donations and provides free stationery

Parents at a south Auckland school no longer have to worry about buying stationery or paying donations. Rowandale Primary School in Manurewa has scrapped its request for an annual donation and is providing free stationery for every student.

Hungry children won’t show up for new school year, principal says

Principal Belinda Johnston knows of students that are without uniforms or regular meals. When the bell sounds for the start of the school year at south Auckland’s Anchorage Park School some of the chairs are likely to be empty, principal Belinda Johnston says.

It’s not that the decile three Pakuranga primary is struggling to fill its roll, rather that many parents will feel self-conscious about sending their kids to school hungry.

School uniforms – why do they cost so much?

Twenty families a day are calling the Christchurch City Mission seeking help paying for new school uniforms.

How to cope with anxiety when going back to school

It’s that time of year: school’s country wide are opening their doors for a new year. It can come as a welcome relief to parents after the long summer break, but it can cause anxiety in kids. How does a parent cope with that?

Gwendoline Smith is a clinical psychologist, speaker, blogger and author.  She also works closely with the Faculty of Education at the University of Auckland to provide guidance to school councillors.

Tauranga’s booming population hits schools in 2019

Tauranga’s surging population is forcing schools to build new classrooms and repurpose existing buildings as they prepare for a big influx of new students in 2019.



Are teachers valued in New Zealand?

I love teaching young people.  I love the energy, the challenges and the diversity they bring to my life.  But I am seriously concerned about the future of education in New Zealand.

National MP Nicola Willis wants to chop up to two weeks off schools’ summer holiday

Nicola Willis, who argues the case for a shorter break in an opinion piece in today’s Herald, said she intends to write a private member’s bill to implement the idea.

Media releases


Quitting teachers explain why they are leaving

NZEI: Surveys* of teachers and principals who quit the profession last year show they left mainly due to a lack of work/life balance and burnout from high workload. The survey respondents included 169 primary and 201 secondary teachers and principals.

Rāmere 25 o Kohitātea

School year begins as more teacher strikes loom

Schools begin to reopen next week under the threat of industrial action by both primary and secondary teachers. That’s despite direct talks between the primary teachers union and the Education Minister, Chris Hipkins, over the holidays in an attempt to resolve the deadlock that last year resulted in two strikes by teachers and principals. (RNZ Audio)

Are our teachers ready for the new curriculum?

As thousands of children get ready to start the school year, there is concern that the biggest change to the school curriculum in decades will take students and teachers by surprise. (Newshub Video)

Learning local

Schools are being encouraged to develop localised teaching units now that national standards have been abolished. NZHerald’s Simon Collins has produced a five-part series.

NZ schools need 376 teachers in 2019 as overseas recruitment drive falls short

A search of the Education Gazette on Wednesday found 376 vacancies – 180 in primary, 165 in secondary, and 31 in composite and area schools.

Count on it: kids can love maths

What does mathematics look like in your daily life? Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Education at Massey University Dr Jodie Hunter talks to Kathryn Ryan about how parents can help their children learn to love and understand maths by spotting the patterns all around them. (RNZ Audio)

From speaking zero te reo to teaching the language

At one point Jamal Peeni could only speak two words of te reo Māori. Now he’s been chosen to teach the language at one of the top te reo courses in Aotearoa.

How ‘safetyism’ created an epidemic of anxiety and fragility

The new morality of a strident and vocal “Generation Z” minority who demand protection from words and ideas they do not like is spreading quickly in English-speaking countries.

Emotional tools for kids taught through books and songs

New Zealand author Avril McDonald is taking her book series Feel Brave into the music world.

Free school buses trial to begin in Tauranga next week

The Welcome Bay school bus trial will establish whether free fares for students can assist in Tauranga’s traffic congestion at the start of Term One for Welcome Bay students.

Long serving Nelson principal accepts new role in Golden Bay

Hugh Gully, longest serving principal of Nelson Intermediate, has been announced as the new head of Collingwood Area School.

Media releases

ShapEd delivers three new primary schools

ShapEd delivers three new primary schools under third schools Public Private Partnership.

First micro-credentials for secondary school students

MITO: Secondary school students keen to gain experience in the automotive industry while at school can now achieve micro-credentials.

Fully Funded Scholarships at The Mind Lab

The Mind Lab: In a bid to help support educational equity across New Zealand, The Mind Lab is offering full-tuition scholarships for their Postgraduate Certificate in Digital & Collaborative Learning to the first 100 teachers working in decile 1-3 schools for the March 2019 intake.


Rāapa 23 o Kohitātea, Wednesday 23 January

Education Minister Chris Hipkins believes teachers’ strike ‘unjustified’

Chris Hipkins believes it would be unjustified for teachers to strike again. The Education Minister has been in negotiations with the Post Primary Teachers’ Association (PPTA) over the last week, and further discussions are expected with NZEI, the primary school teachers union.

“We are happy to talk to them about how we can reconfigure [the offers] to meet their needs but the ability of Government to continue to add to the offer is constrained,” he told The AM Show on Tuesday.

Six-monthly school reports to parents look set to be axed

Traditional six-monthly school reports to parents may be axed in a revamped school curriculum with more localised teaching topics. A review group on curriculum, progress and achievement, set up to develop new ideas for primary schools after national standards were abolished in 2017, wants parents to get real-time digital information about their children’s learning instead of traditional reports.

Digital report cards are better for children, parents but worse for teachers: Principal

A primary school principal says digital reports cards could be better for kids and parents but would mean more work for teachers. Education Minister Chris Hipkins is considering giving traditional report cards the axe – after a primary school review group suggested going digital.

The lucrative relationship between schools and business

Parents spending up large on digital devices for their children’s schoolwork, should get tax rebates, ex-school principal Graham Prentice believes. Around half of schools (48 per cent) have “bring your own device” (BYOD) policies, according to research done for Ministry of Education by private market intelligence company IDC.

Maps of space and time

What do maps do? That seems easy: they locate you in space. But they can also put you in time. Ngāi Tahu’s innovative Kā Huru Manu is one of those maps. As an interactive cultural mapping project, online at kahurumanu.co.nz, it layers original Māori place names and travel routes (known as kā ara tawhito) over the familiar shape of the South Island, restoring its lost histories.

Teachers deregistered for almost 600 matters in past 5 years

Data supplied by the Teaching Council under the Official Information Act shows that teachers were barred temporarily or permanently for 128 matters of sexual behaviour or contact and 59 matters of “inappropriate behaviour (sexual non-contact, etc)” in the five years to the end of 2018.

Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust CEO steps down

Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust CEO Kararaina Calcott-Cribb has stepped down from the position she has held for the past three years.

Media releases


Ministry of Education employees supporting children with learning needs to take strike action

NZEI: Learning Support Service Managers, the Education Ministry staff responsible for the allocation and management of support services for children with additional learning needs, are set to take strike action from Monday [21 January] after a bid to gain parity with other managers employed by the Ministry of Education failed.

First NZ Study on effects of screen-time on pre-school children

NZGovt: Obesity, poorer motor skills, hyperactivity problems and poor sleep are just some of the effects that may be experienced by pre-school children who exceed New Zealand’s screen-time guidelines, according to a study funded by the Ministry of Social Development’s Children and Families Research Fund.

Still time for schools to access ongoing support

Ministry of Education: The Ministry of Education will continue to support principals with their teaching vacancies beyond the start of the first term and well into the school year with a range of supply initiatives.

Maori Kids to start the school year more behind than ever

Maori council: Maori Kids to start the school year more behind than ever before: rise of the digital divide In this press release: an overview of the problem faced, solutions for Government to consider and tips for parents to try and cover the costs involved. The new school …Maori Kids to start the school year more behind than ever before: rise of the digital divide.