Tuesday, May 28, 2024

$24m to import 700 teachers and boost post-COVID student support

Associate Education Minister, Jan Tinetti, has today announced a $24 million investment to deliver close to 1,000 additional teachers and boost post-pandemic student support to New Zealand classrooms.

“Teacher supply has long been a priority for us. Ensuring we have more teachers is vital to ensure our kids are getting the education they need,” said Minister Tinetti.

“By investing a further $24m… we plan to deliver close to 1,000 additional teachers – we expect to recruit approximately 700 internationally and 300 domestically.”

The Minister said overseas-trained teachers bring diversity to communities.

“It’s also the quickest way to get experienced teachers into schools, so we’ll bring in hundreds more through this package,” she said.

“But the long-term goal is to improve the supply of domestic teachers, so we can meet demand when needed. So we are increasing the number of teachers who can train while they are placed in schools, putting more incentives in place to get beginning and returning teachers into hard-to-staff roles and expanding our successful ‘career changer’ scholarships, which are designed to encourage and enable mid-career professionals with valuable life experience to become teachers.”

Education Minister, Chris Hipkins said $20 million would go toward additional teaching and tutoring services for young people whose learning has been disrupted by COVID-19.

“We know that young people have missed some crucial time in the classroom throughout the last two and a half years and we need to address the impact of that head-on,” said Mr Hipkins.

“So we are putting $20 million towards additional teaching and tutoring services. This will include exam preparation, workshops, tutorials and homework, and one-on-one mentoring. We know that schools are best placed to make the best decisions to target the funding where it is needed most.”

Of this investment, more than $2 million will support programmes designed specifically for Māori and Pacific students, while $17.4 million will help year 7-13 students in schools with greater proportions of young people facing socio-economic challenges to educational achievement, which have been exacerbated by COVID-19.

“The Ministry of Education will expand existing community-led programmes across the motu that can target the specific needs of Māori and Pacific NCEA learners in their community,” Ms Tinetti said.

“Altogether, these community-led programmes will be able to help at least 2,245 year 11 to 13 Māori and Pacific learners get extra practical NCEA help during Term 4 this year.”

The Equity Index will be used to weight the rest of the funding, and schools will decide which students are offered the service, drawing on their knowledge of their own learners, the Minister said.

“The Ministry will also directly purchase additional tutoring and teaching for non-enrolled or at-risk students, to help support them to re-engage with schooling.”

In addition, 500 more Te Kura dual tuition summer school places are being added – giving students in Years 11 and 12 more time to study over the 2022–2023 summer term.

“The Government has confidence that through addressing teacher supply issues and improving students’ outcomes through additional learning resources, we will be able to address some of the inequities that have been made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“We are committed to ensuring all our tamariki receive the supports they need to overcome obstacles in their learning,” Ms Tinetti said.

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