Tukunga pāpāho

No easy fixes for education without resourcing to back it up

30 Pae 2024

Changes to education need to be properly resourced if they have any chance of succeeding, NZEI Te Riu Roa said today.

“Members of the education profession will look at the Education Minister’s priorities and be asking how these will work in practise, without significant new investment,” NZEI president Mark Potter said.

“We welcome the focus on learning support – this is an area where there is clear evidence of unmet need in both early childhood education and the schooling sector.”

“However, the right approach here will be to broaden access to learning support, not to target it too narrowly. Restricting access to learning support is what is causing the problems now.

“Expanding eligibility for learning support means wider access to key learning support funding streams like ORS, employing more teacher aides and employing more specialist learning support staff to address long wait times.”

Mark Potter cautioned against an overreliance on data and reporting without addressing the simple fact that teachers need more time.

“One of the most important factors in determining a child’s educational success is their sense of belonging at their early learning centre and school. This means valuing children’s language, culture and identity, and it means having lower class sizes so teachers can have more quality time with each child.”

“New Zealand teachers are held in high esteem professionally and remain among the most sought after globally because of their expertise and skills. There is an assumption being made in today’s announcement that teachers don’t know the best ways to engage children and bring out the best in them. With the right resources this can happen – and we look forward to making this case with Government about where to focus priorities in education,” Mark Potter said.