This week thousands of children in our local area went back to school for 2017.
I hope they all enjoy themselves and the new opportunities that are in front of them. I’m sure parents will be pleased to see the school year start again too.
Education is fundamental to the success of our younger generation. We want to equip them as well as possible to progress into the adult world with a breadth of skills and experience that will stand them in good stead for the future.
Evidence shows that quality of teaching and school leadership are the two most important factors in a child’s education.
Our focus for the past eight years has been on improving performance across the education system to ensure every child has the opportunity to be successful.
Throughout New Zealand, more than 1503 schools have formed Communities of Learning, around 60 per cent of our nation’s schools in an effort to work better together and collaborate on shared ventures.
This means that more than half a million students are benefiting from shared teaching expertise and resources – with teachers working alongside each other to raise student achievement.
In addition, there are 95 early childhood education and tertiary providers involved. The Communities of Learning should see better transitions for students from early childhood to school to tertiary study.
With the information technology sector as one of the fastest growing sectors in New Zealand, we also believe it’s important Kiwi students are prepared to learn and work in a modern, high-tech world.
We want our schools ready and able to support young people to develop skills, confidence, and an interest in digital technologies, to set them up for successful futures. So in 2018, digital technology will be formally integrated into the New Zealand Curriculum.
Delivering better education services, which meet the needs of every child, is a top priority for the Government.
That is why Budget 2016 provided a $15.3 million funding increase to ensure students with a range of learning difficulties, can receive support tailored to their individual learning needs.
As a result, an extra 1250 Kiwi children will receive help from teacher aides. We are now funding an extra 550,000 hours of classroom support for students with additional learning needs.
All parents want to see their children lead happy, successful lives. Giving every child the best education possible will help achieve that.
Jami-Lee Ross – Member of Parliament for Botany