Annual Report 2017 — Part one
Section 19B reports
The Vote Education and Vote Tertiary Education Section 19B Reports in Relation to Non-Departmental Appropriations for the year ended 30 June 2017 were presented to the House in accordance with section 19B of the Public Finance Act 1989.
Parts 2 and 3 of the Annual Report 2017
Download the full Annual Report 2017 to view:
- Part 2 — Our performance information
- Part 3 — Annual financial statements.
Every child and student achieves educational success
Every student should be supported to meet their potential. We are focused on raising the quality of teaching and learning, and supporting all children and students to meet their potential.
Increasing participation and engagement
In order to learn and achieve, children and young people must participate and be engaged in what they are learning.
Improving participation in quality early learning
Participation in quality early learning has positive and long lasting associations with students’ literacy, numeracy and social skills. The Government set a Better Public Services (BPS) goal to increase participation, with a target that by December 2016, 98% of children starting school would have participated in quality early childhood education (ECE).
As at December 2016, 96.7% of children had participated in ECE prior to starting school. The 98% target had been reached in some regions, including Nelson/Marlborough, Canterbury and Otago/Southland and by 30 June 2017 most places have very few children not participating in ECE.
While the period for the BPS target has officially ended, we continue to focus on lifting participation in early learning, particularly for Māori and Pasifika children and those from low socio economic communities. As at June 2017, 96.8% of children starting school had participated in ECE, an increase of 0.2 percentage points from June 2016.
Participation in ECE remains a key performance measure for the Ministry.
In January 2017, new Engaging Priority Families and Supported Playgroup initiatives began in areas with high numbers of non- participating children.
Indicator 1 Increase participation in Early Childhood Education (ECE)
Better Public Services: Supporting Vulnerable Children, Result 2
Jun 2016 Dec 2016 Change (% points) Dec 2016 target All 96.6% 96.7% Up 0.1% 98.0% Māori 94.9% 95.0% Up 0.1% 98.0% Pasifika 92.7% 92.9% Up 0.2% 98.0% Decile 1-3 schools 93.7% 94.0% Up 0.3% 98.0%
The Engaging Priority Families initiative provides coordinators to help 3 and 4 year old children to go to ECE. They support the hardest to reach families, helping them to find the right early learning option for them, encouraging regular attendance, supporting learning at home and helping them with the transition to school. The Ministry currently contracts 12 providers across the country, working in communities with the most need. These providers engage and support almost 900 children from priority families at any given time.
Through Supported Playgroups, we provide an early learning option for communities with large numbers of children who do not attend ECE because parents want to stay with their children or where there are significant barriers to setting up and sustaining an ECE service. A Supported Playgroup is a certificated playgroup, with regular support from a Kaimanaaki or Playgroup Educator to ensure the provision of quality ECE and encourage involvement by families. The Ministry currently contracts 12 Supported Playgroups in targeted areas.
We continued to implement the Strengthening Early Learning Opportunities (SELO) for children, whānau, families and communities programme. It is a professional development programme for early learning, targeted at ECE providers and kōhanga reo that have low participation rates or need support in providing quality early learning. The evaluation of SELO (SELO Evaluation Report – Cognition Education) confirmed that it reached the intended targeted group, which included Māori, Pasifika and low socio- economic families. Generally, ECE me ngā kōhanga reo were satisfied with the SELO model, in particular the localised approach.
Improving participation at school
Our research has shown a clear link between attendance and achievement at school. Nationally, there has been a decrease in the number of students attending school regularly. During Term 2 of 2016, 67.2% of students attended school regularly compared with 69.5% in 20153. Māori and Pasifika students had the lowest regular attendance rates, with 54.7% and 57.2%, respectively.
In the Attendance Survey Report, regular attendance is defined as more than 90% of half days. This does not mean we regard 90% as adequate for learning; it is the threshold we use to benchmark attendance.
We are increasing the number of tools available to schools to help them increase their understanding of absence and its impact on achievement.
Our Attendance Service supports schools and students to manage and improve attendance. We contract providers to deliver the service throughout New Zealand. Five additional providers were contracted to deliver the service at the beginning of 2017, bringing the total number of Attendance Service providers to 16 across 24 service areas.
As of Term 1 2017, 82% of schools are signed up to use the Attendance Service and refer students who are unjustifiably absent. This is an increase from 68% in Term 1 2016.
Through the initiative Every Day Matters, we provide schools with individualised analysis of their attendance data. This is a voluntary initiative, with 209 schools registering to send their complete data from their student management system each term. We anticipate more schools will sign up during the remainder of 2017 as they see the value this reporting provides.
In 2016, the age standardised stand down rate increased slightly for the first time in 10 years but remains lower than rates prior to 2013. The rates for suspensions and exclusions remained consistent with 2015. Schools continue to stand down, suspend and exclude more Māori students than any other group.
Per 1,000 students 20154 2016 Change Stand downs 19.3 20.6 Up 1.3 Suspensions 3.5 3.6 Up 0.1 Exclusions 1.4 1.4 No change
Research shows that children with significant behavioural problems are highly likely to experience poor education and life outcomes, and that timely and effective interventions can help them improve their self-control and learn more positive ways of behaving. Budget 2017 gives $34.7 million in funding to provide specialist behaviour services to an additional 1,000 children aged 0 to 8 years old.
Graph showing half-day attendance, by ethnicity, Term 2 2016
- 0-75% of half days – 13.1%
- 75-85% of half days – 15.6%
- 85-90% of half days – 16.7%
- 90-95% of half days – 21.3%
- 95-100% of half days – 33.4%
- 0-75% of half days – 11.9%
- 75-85% of half days – 14.7%
- 85-90% of half days – 16.1%
- 90-95% of half days – 20.2%
- 95-100% of half days – 37.0%
- 0-75% of half days – 4.8%
- 75-85% of half days – 7.3%
- 85-90% of half days – 11.0%
- 90-95% of half days – 18.3%
- 95-100% of half days – 58.7%
- 0-75% of half days – 6.0%
- 75-85% of half days – 10.3%
- 85-90% of half days – 14.3%
- 90-95% of half days – 22.8%
- 95-100% of half days – 46.6%
- 0-75% of half days – 5.8%
- 75-85% of half days – 9.8%
- 85-90% of half days – 13.9%
- 90-95% of half days – 22.6%
- 95-100% of half days – 47.9%
- 0-75% of half days – 7.6%
- 75-85% of half days – 11.0%
- 85-90% of half days – 14.2%
- 90-95% of half days – 21.5%
- 95-100% of half days – 45.6%
Improving educational achievement
We want New Zealand’s education system to deliver equitable and excellent outcomes for children and young people.
Maintaining performance in National Standards and Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori
National Standards and Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori set clear expectations that students need to meet in their first eight years at school. For National Standards these expectations are set across reading, writing and mathematics, and for Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori expectations are set across pānui, pāngarau, tuhituhi and kōrero.
The introduction of National Standards has led to a small and sustainable increase in reading, writing and maths since 2011. However, the proportion of students achieving at or above National Standards decreased slightly between 2015 and 2016 with decreases of 0.3% in reading and writing, and a 0.1% decrease in maths. Achievement has consistently remained highest in the reading standard, followed by maths and then writing. Achievement is not increasing year on year at a rate we would like to see and our target of 85% by the end of 2017 is unlikely to be met. There are challenges and successes for each group; however achievement for Māori and Pasifika remains lower than other groups across the three standards.
Indicator 2 Enrolled students at or above National Standards levels, per 100 students Year to December 20155 2016 Change (% points) 2017 target Reading All 78.1% 77.8% Down 0.3 85.0% Māori 68.9% 68.8% Down 0.1 85.0% Pasifika 66.1% 66.0% Down 0.1 85.0% Decile 1-3 Schools 65.5% 65.5% No change 85.0% Writing All 71.5% 71.2% Down 0.3 85.0% Māori 61.8% 61.6% Down 0.2 85.0% Pasifika 60.6% 60.5% Down 0.1 85.0% Decile 1-3 Schools 58.8% 59.1% Up 0.3 85.0% Maths All 75.5% 75.4% Down 0.1 85.0% Māori 65.6% 65.3% Down 0.3 85.0% Pasifika 63.3% 62.7% Down 0.6 85.0% Decile 1-3 Schools 63.4% 63.0% Down 0.4 85.0% Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori results: Year to December 2015 2016 Pānui 68.5% 69.0% Tuhituhi 59.8% 58.0% Pāngarau 60.9% 57.7% Kōrero 63.0% 59.8%
During 2016/17, we continued to support programmes to accelerate achievement of National Standards and Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori. Students from different backgrounds tend to make the same level of progress year on year. Because levels of progress are similar, students whose progress falls behind early struggle to catch up in later years. The Ministry has developed tools to help teachers understand more about the rate and pace of progress to enable them to better target resources to lift performance.
A new set of BPS results was agreed in 2016/17, which has a focus on improving mathematics, pāngarau, literacy and tuhituhi skills for all students. They are designed to help keep a system focus on these important foundation skills.
To help us meet the 2021 BPS target, we will review and develop the programmes that have the greatest impact on student progress.
During 2016/17, we reviewed and will be enhancing Programmes for Students and Mauri tu Mauri Ora. These programmes aim to accelerate the achievement of students who are not meeting the National Standard in mathematics, or at Manawa Ora in Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori.
New BPS result 5 targets
By 2021 By 2021
80% of Year 8 students are achieving at or above the National Standard in writing, or at Manawa Ora or Manawa Toa in Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori tuhituhi.
80% of Year 8 students are achieving at or above the National Standard in mathematics, or at Manawa Ora or Manawa Toa in Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori pāngarau.
Improving performance at NCEA Level 2
The National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) measures students’ achievement at secondary school. NCEA Level 2 is the minimum qualification that young people need to progress into further education or training. The Government set a Better Public Services target in 2012 to increase the number of 18 year olds achieving NCEA Level 2 or an equivalent qualification to 85% by 2017.
Since its introduction, the percentage of 18 year olds with NCEA Level 2 has reached record highs. The number of 18 year olds with NCEA Level 2 or above increased from 83.3% in 2015 to 84.6% for 2016 (an increase of 1.3 percentage points). This means we are very close to reaching the BPS target of 85%.
The national NCEA Level 2 achievement rates for Year 12 students are increasing across all ethnic groups, with Māori and Pasifika achievement improving at a faster rate than the national average since the targets were introduced. This is narrowing the gap between Māori and Pasifika and total achievement, but the gap persists. We are continuing to monitor these groups closely.
Indicator 3 Increase the proportion of 18 year olds with NCEA Level 2 or equivalent qualification
Better Public Services: Boosting Skills and Employment, Result 5
Year to December 2015 2016 Change (% points) 2017 target All 83.3% 84.6% Up 1.3 85.0% Māori 71.1% 74.3% Up 3.2 85.0% Pasifika 77.6% 78.7% Up 1.1 85.0% Decile 1-3 schools 75.0% 76.9% Up 1.9 85.0%
5 We have restated previous years data which means there are some small differences from what was previously reported. This is due to some schools sending in late data returns and others correcting their information.
Graph showing the new BPS Result 5 target to improve mathematics and literacy skills. The graph shows the level of achievement in mathematics/pāngarau and writing/tuhituhi between 2012 and 2016 with dotted lines leading to the 2021 target of 80%. In 2016, the proportion of Year 8 students at or above for writing/tuhituhi was 69.2% and for mathematics/pāngarau was 70.6%.
Below the graph is a note that reads: Data in the graphs comes from school and kura reports of student achievement against National Standards or Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori provided to the Ministry of Education under National Administrative Guideline 2A. The percentage at or above standard or Manawa Ora or Manawa Toa is calculated using all the Year 8 students that we have information about.
Data in the graphs comes from school and kura reports of student achievement against National Standards or Ngā Whanaketanga Rumaki Māori provided to the Ministry of Education under National Administrative Guideline 2A. The percentage at or above standard or Manawa Ora or Manawa Toa is calculated using all the Year 8 students that we have information about.
Supporting Māori and Pasifika students to participate and achieve in education
Ka Hikitia – Accelerating Success 2013-2017 and the Pasifika Education Plan 2013-2017 set out our commitment to improve educational outcomes for Māori and Pasifika students.
During 2016/17 we identified the key education areas to prioritise in the future. The transformation of the education system through Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako and the statement of National Education and Learning Priorities (NELP) provide an opportunity to link these key system levers with our updated plans.
The Building on Success initiative supported school leaders and teachers to develop professional leadership and schooling practices to deliver the curriculum effectively and increase educational success for Māori. Through this initiative, the national provider Kia Eke Panuku and Te Kākahu, the Whanganui rohe provider, worked with 103 secondary schools to raise Māori student achievement and develop more culturally responsive teaching practices over the past three years. A Ministry survey of Kia Eke Panuku indicated that in 2016, schools had made positive improvements, particularly around increasing teachers’ ability to teach in more culturally responsive ways and increasing the use and understanding of te reo for Māori students.
Despite improving in many achievement rates over previous years, Māori and Pasifika students still face inequitable outcomes: ECE Participation in 2017 Achievement of National Standards in Reading 18 year olds who have achieved at least NCEA Level 2 Māori 95.2% Māori Māori 2016 68.8% 2016 74.3% 2015 68.9% 2015 71.1% Pasifika 92.4% Pasifika Pasifika 2016 66.0% 2016 78.7% 2015 66.1% 2015 77.6% General population 96.8% General population 77.8% General population 84.6%
Similarly, schools involved in Te Kākahu from 2014 progressed well and were creating better connections between the schools, whānau and iwi. Schools who joined the programme later remained in a developing phase, with most uncertain or not confident about the improvements they had made. The initiative ended in 2016 in alignment with the new PLD structure. Both providers have assisted these schools and Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako to evaluate their priorities as they transition to the new structure.
The Māori Achievement Collaboratives (MACs) focuses on leadership, fostering collaboration and professional growth leading to changes in individual schools aimed at Māori success. The initiative will help to achieve the Ka Hikitia – Accelerating Success 2013-2017 goal of Māori students enjoying and achieving educational success through change in the hearts and minds of principals.
The initiative was piloted in 2014 with six clusters supporting 46 principals. The MAC initiative is now delivered across nine clusters supporting 157 Principals. Nationally, 12,119 Māori students are targeted under the initiative. However, because the initiative supports system change the total numbers of students impacted nationally is 41,681.
The latest survey results on the effectiveness of the MAC initiative indicates that:
- 68% of respondents rated the MACs PLD delivery as either very effective or highly effective
- 29% rated MACs as effective
- 92% of respondents agreed that the MACs PLD has impacted positively on Māori student achievement
- 84% of respondents agreed that Māori student achievement had improved in their school.
To encourage participation and achievement for Pasifika students, we developed Tapasā – a competency framework for teachers of Pasifika children and young people. During 2016/17, we strengthened the connection of Tapasā with ECE and learning support, and completed consultation with the sector. The Education Council will lead implementation with the sector.
Providing Te Reo Māori language pathways
Te Rāngai Kāhui Ako ā-Iwi is a framework to support quality and sustainable Māori-medium education, recognising diversity region by region, iwi by iwi. We have been introducing Te Rāngai Kāhui Ako ā-Iwi to iwi in four of the 10 education regions, and to Māori-medium peak bodies and government agencies. This will be rolled out to the remaining six education regions from August 2017.
To support Te Rangai Ako Kāhui ā-Iwi, we are working alongside iwi to identify ways to ensure children and young people in Māori-medium education have access to quality and sustainable learning pathways. We are working with iwi to draft regional action plans to set out their aspirations for Māori-medium education in their region, and their plans to make this a reality.
At the end of 2016, we completed the development of NCEA Achievement Standards, derived from Te Marautanga o Aotearoa, for Levels 1, 2 and 3. This supports all wharekura students to follow a Māori-medium derived qualification pathway through to the end of schooling, and to transition appropriately into tertiary education.
We continue to support Te Kura Whānau Reo, a language programme administered through Te Ataarangi which seeks to develop the language capabilities of 75 whānau to support their tamariki learning in and through te reo Māori.
Providing Pasifika language resources
The Ministry has been piloting the use of Pasifika Dual Language resources that build on Pasifika language knowledge in order to improve English literacy.
A research project into the benefit of using the Pasifika Dual Language resources found that 82% of the children involved in a three month pilot have improved between two to 15 reading levels, and that their confidence and self esteem have also been significantly raised. Another 24 Pasifika Dual Language resources were completed in 2016/17, meaning schools will now be able to order a full set of early readers online from September 2017. Support for teachers and parents to use these readers is also available.
Enabling all children and young people to achieve their potential
New Zealand needs an inclusive education system where all children get the support they need to access the curriculum, participate fully and achieve in education.
Modernising learning support
We are modernising our learning support system so that it is easier to access, child-focused and more efficient. Through the Learning Support Update, we have been testing a new service delivery model for learning support in the Bay of Plenty – Waiariki region since March 2017. The new model and implementation plan were co-designed with regional sector partners and key stakeholders from Whakatane, Ōtūmoetai and Taupo.
Key features of the new model include:
- providing a streamlined process for parents and schools/kura to access support
- using Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako as the primary platform for delivering learning support
- local learning support teams who will coordinate service providers and facilitate flexible, tailored, dedicated solutions for children and young people
- using a single Learning Support Plan to document actions, resources and goals
- collecting individual student data related to learning support and achievement.
Early indications from the Bay of Plenty – Waiariki test suggest that the new model is facilitating quicker and easier access to learning support when needed.
We will continue to roll out the new model to further Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako throughout the remainder of 2017 and during 2018.
Maintaining and improving learning support
During 2016/17, we provided or funded specialist services and support to over 36,000 children and young people with additional learning needs.
Over the last year we have reduced the average time children and young people have to wait for support to be provided following a referral, from 73 days in June 2016 to 60 days in June 2017.
We continued to fund Resource Teachers: Learning and Behaviour to work with teachers, schools and kura to support over 17,000 Year 1 to 10 students with learning and behavioural difficulties. Resource teachers have a particular focus on supporting Māori and Pasifika students, as well as children and young people moving into state care.
Our Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS) supported over 320 children and young people who were struggling to stay at school and learn. These children struggle due to their complex and challenging educational, behavioural and social issues at school, in their families and whānau, and in their communities.
With the additional funding for In-Class Support received through Budgets 2016 and 2017, around 3,375 students who have ongoing high learning needs will receive up to five additional teacher aide hours per week through this initiative from the start of Term 3, 2017.
We continue to monitor the satisfaction of parents and educators of young people who receive our special education core services. As the preschool age population and school rolls continue to grow, there are more children receiving these services than ever before.
Our 2016 client satisfaction survey found:
- 64% (down 8% from 2015) of respondents were satisfied with the overall quality of our service delivery. Parents reported the highest levels of satisfaction with being included in developing the plan and goals for their child, feeling like their cultural needs were well considered, and being treated fairly
- 63% (down 6% from 2015) of respondents were satisfied with the child’s progress after receiving the service. Educators reported the highest levels of satisfaction with being treated fairly, staff competency, and being included in developing the plan and goals for the student.
Parents and educators experienced the lowest levels of satisfaction with the same aspects of service delivery. These were the amount of time it took to get the service, the child’s progress after the service, and value for tax dollars spent.
We are disappointed with these results, both of which fell short of our stretch targets of 85%. We know that we have more work to do to meet the expectations of parents, caregivers and educators, and this work is underway.
In mid-2015, we consulted extensively with over 3,650 parents, whānau, schools and local communities to understand their frustrations with dealing with the Ministry's Special Education provision. Both families and educators told us the special education system could be hard to navigate, with too many hurdles to get to the right support. Parents told us that they don’t always get support for their child soon enough. We have used this feedback to inform our approach to modernising how learning support is delivered across the sector.
We worked with the New Zealand School Trustees Association (NZSTA) to develop a Disputes Resolution Process for schools, families and whānau where there are issues and concerns about students with learning support needs that cannot be resolved between the parties. We held workshops with a wide range of stakeholders including representatives of teacher unions, disabled people’s organisations, parent support groups and education sector groups.
The new process will focus on early resolution of issues by supporting facilitated conversations, introducing a review process to consider all options and provision of a mediation service for complex issues. There will be a phased implementation in three regions (Auckland, Whanganui/Manawatu and Marlborough), which will be evaluated before being rolled out nationally.
Providing additional support through targeted initiatives
Year 9 Plus
Year 9 Plus was established in 2016 to provide intensive educational and social support to 100 of the most vulnerable Year 9 students in Gisborne.
Early findings show the Year 9 Plus trial is improving outcomes for vulnerable youth with complex educational needs. The majority of whānau surveyed attribute the improvements in their child’s attitude to learning in the last six months to Year 9 Plus. They also report improved family relationships and students having increased confidence.
At Risk of Not Achieving programme
Through our At Risk of Not Achieving programme, we continued to work with 349 secondary schools where there were high numbers of Māori and Pasifika students at risk of not achieving NCEA Level 2. During 2016/17, we worked with schools and kura to provide additional resources to support students. This included mentoring, providing whānau and iwi support, and working with schools to make Pathway Support programmes available to students. An additional 542 Māori students and 161 Pasifika students achieved NCEA Level 2 or equivalent.
In 2016, we also worked with 85 national tertiary providers in 148 locations where there are high numbers of Māori and Pasifika students who are at risk of not achieving NCEA Level 2. Utilising tools and resources such as Vocational Pathways, schools and providers can work on curriculum review and design to increase student achievement and progression through the education system into training and/or employment.
Count Me In
Through Count Me In, we supported Māori and Pasifika 16 to 18 year olds to reengage in learning and attain NCEA Level 2 or an equivalent qualification.
On entry to Count Me In, over 780 (or 89%) of the young people we supported through the programme had no NCEA Level 1 literacy and numeracy credits and 779 (or 89%) had no NCEA Level 2 credits. When the Count Me In programme ended on 30 June 2017, 64% of the young people we supported had attained NCEA Level 2 credits, with 145 (or 17%) attaining either NCEA Level 2 or an equivalent qualification. We expect the attainment to increase once first semester courses are completed.
Count Me In provided several valuable insights into the issues that adversely affect the ability of Māori and Pasifika young people to re-engage in learning and attain relevant qualifications. We will continue to use these insights as we work to reduce the number of young people that are not in education, employment or training. We will also encourage other agencies working with young people not in education, employment or training to adopt the methodology, and have refined our original Facilitators Guide and published a new Supporter’s Guide which contains tools for use by parents, families, agencies and employers.
Partnership Schools | Kura Hourua
Partnership Schools continue to target our most vulnerable students, providing a schooling option to help them reach their potential. This year, we initiated two further Partnership Schools procurement application rounds – one resulting in two new Partnership Schools to open in 2018, and another is currently underway for schools to open in 2019.
Creating a positive environment for learning
Positive Behaviour for Learning
Positive Behaviour for Learning (PB4L) is a long term, systemic approach involving several initiatives. These include whole school change initiatives, targeted group programmes and individual student support services. The initiatives are designed to help parents, whānau, teachers, early childhood centres and schools address problem behaviour, improve children’s wellbeing and increase educational achievement.
As at 30 June 2017, 174 secondary schools are participating in PB4L Restorative Practice and 779 schools are implementing PB4L School- Wide. We are looking to significantly increase the number of schools accessing the School- Wide framework over the coming year.
Since the beginning of the initiative over 22,000 parents have participated in the Incredible Years Parent programme, as well as 15,900 teachers and early childhood educators in the Incredible Years Teacher programme. These PB4L programmes are targeted at students who need additional support.
Restraint and seclusion
In November 2016 the Secretary for Education wrote to all schools stating the expectation that they should cease the practice of seclusion. Schools were offered support to enable the change of this practice immediately.
Schools should be, and usually are, a safe and happy place. But there are times when things risk getting out of control and someone needs to step in. On rare occasions a student may need to be physically restrained.
During 2016/17 we worked with a sector- based advisory group to develop new rules and guidance on physical restraint. The new rules, which came into force in August 2017, require schools to notify, monitor and report on the use of physical restraint.
Rates of bullying in New Zealand schools are high compared with most other countries. Some schools already have comprehensive approaches to bullying prevention and are building positive school environments, while others are still developing their approaches.
The Secretary for Education established the Bullying Prevention Advisory Group in 2013 to begin cross-sector work to address bullying in New Zealand schools. The group is a collaboration of 18 organisations, with representatives from across the education, health, justice and social sectors, as well as internet safety and human rights advocacy groups.
Bullying-Free New Zealand Week, which ran between 22 and 26 May in 2017, provided schools with an opportunity to review their bullying prevention policies, run classroom activities, and get their students and community talking about bullying. This year’s theme was ‘New Zealand students with solutions – working together to end bullying’.
Prior to the Week, schools accessed more than 900 copies of the Ministry developed activity pack from the bullyingfree.nz website. This pack provided a range of bullying prevention-themed ideas, classroom activities and information.
We are also developing a Bullying-Free New Zealand School Toolkit to provide practical resources for schools to use. So far, we have completed:
- a parent’s pack with information and tips on how to deal with and talk about bullying issues
- 10 professional learning and development stand-alone downloadable modules for school staff
- Tackling Bullying: A Guide for Boards of Trustees, to help boards provide leadership and direction in bullying prevention in their school.
We are an agency partner in the Ministry of Health-led draft Suicide Prevention Strategy. The draft Strategy builds on previous strategies and new knowledge about preventing suicidal behaviour. The document identifies a range of priority population groups including young people aged between 15 to 24 years old. Our focus on promoting student wellbeing and building resilience aligns well with the proposed pathways within the draft Strategy.
International student wellbeing
We also led the development of a new International Student Wellbeing Strategy which was launched in June 2017. The Strategy ensures international students have their safety and wellbeing needs met, and will support the new International Education Strategy when it is finalised. The Wellbeing Strategy was developed with input from students, communities and providers.
As part of the Education (Tertiary Education and Other Matters) Amendment Bill, we worked with the sector on changes to enable schools to manage international students’ misconduct outside school. We also looked at how we can improve the regulatory settings that ensure provision of a quality international education system.
Supporting effective teaching and educational leadership
The quality of teaching and leadership is one of the most important factors in enabling all children and young people to succeed in their education. Research shows that professions who collaborate, mentor and learn from each other grow in quality.
Supporting high quality and innovative teaching
Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako each have a number of teachers who share their subject and practice expertise, both within and across schools. With our support, these teachers will drive a shared view of best practice and support its implementation. Teachers can move within Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako to have the greatest impact on children and young people’s progress and achievement. This is being realised with the appointment of 198 across school teachers and 1,009 within school teachers by 30 June 2017.
The Teacher-Led Innovation Fund supports teachers to develop innovative practices that improve learning outcomes, particularly for students who are Māori, Pasifika, have special education needs or come from low socioeconomic backgrounds.
The first 17 schools completed their projects at the end of 2016 and we are compiling summaries of them for publication to spread effective practice.
Schools that were approved in the second round are currently implementing their projects.
The third round of the Teacher-Led Innovation Fund commenced on 1 July 2017 and widened eligibility to include early learning services. Thirty-three new projects were selected in the third funding round, including six led by early learning services and kōhanga reo.
Investing in leadership
The Principal Recruitment Allowance (PRA) attracts a wider pool of experienced applicants to vacant principal roles in our struggling schools. It helps our most high need schools and kura attract effective principals who can provide the leadership needed to lift student achievement.
An evaluation of the implementation of the PRA is currently underway and will focus on the quality of the allowance design and how it is being implemented, which will help identify improvements to support progress towards intended outcomes.
Improving professional learning and development
Professional learning and development (PLD) equips teachers and leaders with the knowledge, skills and confidence to work with an increasingly diverse population and use technologies to support their teaching where possible.
In 2016/17, 67% of schools targeted for professional learning and development demonstrated a positive shift in capability, which was just below our target of 70%.
We have redesigned the PLD system to improve the quality of PLD provision and enable schools to have greater choice about the PLD they receive. The new PLD system is now operational and two allocation rounds of PLD have been undertaken. Over 1,000 schools and kura (including Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako) received a PLD allocation from the first two rounds.
Cabinet agreed that the Education Council will take responsibility for implementing PLD from early 2018 as it is consistent with their role in promoting high quality teaching and leadership. We are working with them on this transition.
Informed and supportive parents, whānau, iwi communities and employers
Research shows home environment and parental involvement have a significant impact on educational achievement. Parents need to be informed and supportive to help children succeed.
Informing and engaging parents and whānau through our online channels
Over the last year we have updated our parent’s website with new information, including:
- information on the changes to the Education Act, including links to 22 fact sheets
- a ‘know your rights’ section providing more information on cohort entry and compulsory attendance
- news items about the importance of children attending schools, with links to information on attendance and what to do if your child is stood down, suspended or expelled
- four videos outlining the benefits of Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako and how they link with local communities.
In the first six months of 2017, we have seen a steady increase in the average monthly activity on the parent’s website. In 2016, there were 25,565 visitors and 56,438 page views per month, and between January and June 2017, this has increased to an average of 33,670 visitors and 72,348 page views per month. The number of followers of our Facebook page for parents has also increased by 60% from 2,752 in January 2017 to 4,400 at the end of June 2017.
We have supported children’s access to universal services by delivering education content for the Hand in Hand book targeted at caregivers; a joint early enhancement for the Investing in Children programme sponsored by the Minister of Health. This is targeted at caregivers and is also available from Ministry of Education regional offices, and online via a link from the Ministry’s parent's website to the copy on the Oranga Tamariki website.
Engaging parents, whānau and iwi
Ka Hikitia Express to Success hubs are places of additional support outside school for secondary students to catch up, get ahead or get back on track. The students are primarily 16 to 18 year old Māori and the hubs help them achieve NCEA Level 2 or an equivalent qualification in a positive, supportive environment. In 2016, 341 students participated in eight hubs. The hubs are based in areas where there are high proportions of Māori students disengaged from education.
In previous years the hubs have focused on working with students, but in 2017 there has been a shift to focus on Māori whānau. This has involved providing whānau workshops and toolkits, for example, helping to understand NCEA, providing information on career opportunities for youth/whānau and tips to support youth success. Some hubs also develop whānau education plans with whānau and their children. Formal analysis of the impacts of the hubs will be undertaken in 2018.
To support iwi partnerships with Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako, we have released the first of two videos to showcase iwi partnerships in action, based on the Te Matakōkiri programme. Te Matakōkiri encourages young people to explore, experience, engage and learn alongside expert partners within their community.
Work is underway in three regions to pilot tools to support partnerships between iwi and Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako. This work will continue into 2017/18.
Engaging Pasifika parents, families and communities
The PowerUP programme aims to lift participation in early learning and accelerate achievement for Pasifika primary and secondary students by providing information and support to parents, families and children. PowerUP is located in community settings and delivered by community providers. The programme reached over 18,000 families, parents, adults, students and children through 20 PowerStations in 2016.
Target (2016) In 2016 PowerUP reached: Parents and families 800 3,634
Pasifika NCEA students
1,500 4,514 NCEA Level 2 students 800 1,502 Year 9 and 10 students 1,000 2,452 Primary school students 1,000 6,249
After attending the parent/adult sessions at a PowerStation:
- 82% of adults were very confident in their understanding of what a child gains from going to early childhood education (compared with 33% before attending the sessions)
- 68% of adults were very confident in understanding National Standards (compared with 33% before attending)
- 70% of adults were very confident in their understanding of how the credits a student achieves contribute to NCEA qualifications (compared with 44% before attending).
PowerUP Plus, a strengths based programme to enable PowerUP to increase its reach to Pasifika parents, families and communities, was evaluated in 2016/17. The key findings were that the programme:
- was relevant to parents and is delivered in a way that is authentic for parents to learn from and reflect on, and which encourages positive changes within families to support their children’s education journey
- provides a safe space for students to engage with teachers and academic mentors to better understand how to approach their learning to achieve success
- enables parents and other adults to build trusting relationships, such as with providers and teachers, that support change.
The first year of longitudinal profiles has also been completed, which gives us a better understanding of what families learnt during PowerUP and how they used this information.