Working together builds the best education system in the world

The Government has set an ambitious goal of building the best education system in the world, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says.

The Coalition Government is working towards developing a 30-year strategic approach to education in New Zealand.

More than 25,000 Kiwis have already participated in the Education Conversation|Kōrero Mātauranga and taken the opportunity to let us know what they think by attending Education Summits and other meetings and completing surveys about the future of education, Chris Hipkins said. This includes fono wananga, meetings and online conversations across the country, and is ongoing.

A cabinet paper released today reports back on the conversation with New Zealanders about making our education system fit for the future and for the needs of all, and two education summits in May.

“Around 1400 people from a wide cross-section of society took part in the four days at events in Auckland and Christchurch in May 2018,” Chris Hipkins said.

“They included teachers and principals from all levels of education, parents, young people and children, Maori, Pacific people, and other ethnic groups, and representatives of learners with disabilities.

“The summits put special emphasis on inviting the voices and communities not usually heard in the education debate, ensuring they could attend. The events were specifically designed for a different style of engagement which enabled an open-ended and genuine exchange of ideas.”

Summit attendees made it clear what was most important to them, Chris Hipkins said.

“At both events, they emphasised the importance of a learner–centred education system, the importance of equity and valuing all learners, and of a holistic approach to learning, which is more connected to the community and which integrates Māori and Pacific values into the curriculum.”

Chris Hipkins said the Government’s several education work streams, including the Tomorrow’s Schools Review, the Early Learning Strategic Plan and the NCEA Review are now drawing on those ideas and suggestions to inform their work on the changes to the education system to meet the needs of all New Zealanders.

The two summits, pre-engagement with stakeholders, and material preparation for the events and in the ongoing conversation cost just under $440,000 to design and develop, and holding the events in Christchurch and Auckland $1.41 million and $1.26 million respectively.

“This important investment is now influencing all aspects of the education portfolio work programme and supporting us to develop an education system that is fit for the future and delivers success for all New Zealanders,” Chris Hipkins said.