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The Education Summits  What you told us 

Over 2,000 principles, values and ideas for change were captured at the two Education Summits in May of 2018. This information is helping develop a 30-year vision for education, and is informing the actions we are taking to meet the needs of all our learners. 

An overview of what you told us at the Summits is available here. 

The Summit and the survey | Te Taumata me te rapunga whakaaro

Around 1,400 people spent two days discussing their vision for the future of learning in New Zealand and the values that should underpin our education system.

Close to 4,000 tweets were sent over the Summit weekends about the Education Conversation, and the hashtag #EdConvo18 was trending on Twitter. Participants shared highlights and conversation content, and people who weren’t at the events were able to follow the hashtags and get involved.

There were more than 16,000 responses to the online public survey, which ran until 31 October 2018.

First report on the Education Conversation | Kōrero Mātauranga

Thank you to the 16,000 of you who joined the Education Conversation | Kōrero Mātauranga on the future of education.  

We have done an initial report on the main themes from the first 11,000 responses received. 

Kōrero Mātauranga Survey - Initial Analysis [PDF, 585KB]

The common themes include:

  • No students should be disadvantaged due to financial or family circumstances.
  • Teachers need better remuneration and to have better supporting staff and strategies to improve teaching practice.
  • Children with additional learning needs require more funding and support.
  • Students should be resilient, capable, resourceful, independent, socially competent and curious.
  • Students need recognising for their contribution to family/whānau, hapu, iwi, and community.
  • Students need to be able to think critically, innovate, respect others and take responsibility. They need good communication skills and strong foundation skills in literacy and numeracy.
  • Young people feel there is too much focus on assessments; this is a burden on them and their teachers.
  • Many parents identified reducing bullying as a priority.
  • Many felt the curriculum should focus on progress rather than testing or benchmarking.
  • Differences in achievement between Māori and Pacific students and Pākehā need addressing, and there should be better teaching of Māori culture and history. Some felt te reo Māori should be compulsory, at least in primary schools.

Your feedback will be used to develop the vision for the future of education in New Zealand for the next 30 years, and to inform the various aspects of the Government’s Education Work Programme as we seek to build the world’s best education system.

The voices of young people

A crucial part of the education conversation has been capturing the voices of young people. Thank you to the 1,935 young people aged 5 - 18 who have given us their views and are helping to shape the future of education in New Zealand.

Below is a comprehensive report of the collected feedback from young people, along with a summarised version.

Voices of Young People Report [PDF 749KB]

Voices of Young People Summary [PDF 300KB]

The major themes that young people spoke about include:

  • Greater cultural representation and diversity in the education system and a better understanding of Māori and multiculturalism in New Zealand in order to build a more accepting and knowledgeable society.
  • An education system that meets the needs of different learners and those with learning needs outside the mainstream ought to receive the support and resourcing they need.
  • Recognising that teachers are integral to providing an individualised and student-focused education.
  • Making wellbeing, including mental and physical health, a priority. Young people want more support and awareness of student wellbeing from the education system, their teachers, family, whānau and community.
  • Access to high-quality education for all students, regardless of socio-economic status. Students want to see a reduction in disparity between schools of different deciles through increased funding, improved quality of education and increased support for students from families and whānau who are struggling financially.

Kōrero about the future of Māori education 

In 2018, we started a conversation with Māori whānau and communities about what matters most in the education of Māori learners through a series of wānanga. More than 2,000 learners, whānau and educators came along and discussed a wide range of issues and opportunities for Māori education. 

The feedback from the hui on the future of Māori education is contained in a national report and a series of regional summary reports available on the Māori education page

Thank you for your input. The information we gathered will be used to inform our refresh of Ka Hikitia and Tau Mai Te Reo and the overall Education Work Programme. 

Ethnic communities events

Thank you to the 500 parents and young people who attended our ethnic community events in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

We have produced a summary of the main themes from the events, which generated more than 2,300 comments. 

Education conversation with ethnic communities [PDF, 865KB] 

Communities broadly agreed that:

  • Parents and families want to be more involved in education and to grow their understanding of the New Zealand system
  • Identity, language and culture should be better recognised and valued in schools
  • There are many passionate teachers who are great at what they do and this should be recognised
  • Teaching practices should more consistently support students to feel safe and valued as individuals
  • Access to different pathways and transitions through the education system could be improved to help children thrive
  • Bias and racism exist and they are harmful to both students and parents
  • Being accepted as kiwis and feeling supported when experiencing anxiety and stress are essential for wellbeing
  • Community-based organisations are doing excellent work with families and schools could tap into this expertise
  • Meaningful employment, less conflict and better support for physical and mental health should be priorities for a healthy society 

Thank you for your input. Your voices are already contributing to the development of the vision for the future of education in New Zealand and the Government’s Education Work Programme.

Further engagement 

To see the specific engagements taking place or coming soon, see our Education Work Programme Overview.