Why now is a good time to rethink the purpose of ECE

Professor Linda Mitchell and her colleagues surveyed 156 managers from Early Childhood Education (ECE) providers on the initial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The report explores challenges concerning the sustainability of ECE services and raises critical questions regarding funding and planning. It suggests now is a good time to rethink the purpose of ECE, to redefine ECE as a public good, and to plan, fund and support it accordingly.

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Early childhood teachers are shovel ready

Last Friday, ECE kaiako and their supporters across the country showed that ECE is primed for investment, by sending their ‘shovel-ready’ photos to key decision-makers in a day of action.

Qualified ECE teachers are paid on average 24% (and up to 49%) less than their Kindergarten counterparts, despite doing what is effectively the same job. Now, ECE teachers are campaigning for fair pay: parity with Kindergarten.

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Compulsory te reo in schools – what does it look like? / Ko te whakapūmau i te reo ki te kura – ka pēhea hoki?

Ah, compulsory te reo Māori in mainstream schools. It’s a grazing table for politician-elects and a fear-inducing topic for overworked teachers. It’s been on the cards since 1972, when 33,000 people signed a petition approaching  Government on the topic, but so far, it’s been a fruit too high to harvest. Compulsion for me isn’t about language, but citizenship. We’re a country at  a standstill on unified progression and, in my view, that standstill is caused by the ignorance that there’s only one single way to live a life. Ignorance leads to fear and scaremongering. The last decade or so has seen legislation questionably enacted, racism in schools and the New Zealand Police brought to light, prejudice in the legal system exposed and some pretty shocking behaviour from incoming local politicians. All these things leave just one thought in my head: if we’re going to fix what is broken, every individual in this country must be able to exercise great citizenship in their decision-making. We need to extinguish individual ignorance before it enters an institution capable of harm. To me, language compulsion seems one crucial way to ensure everyone gets some basic level of mutual communicative understanding, as well as the linguistic

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O Taumafa Manogi ma Aogā mo le Fanau / Nourishment for the next generation

O le Gagana, o le Fatu po‘o le Mauli lea o le Aganu‘u a Samoa a‘o le Aganu‘u, o le Fa‘asinomaga lea o le Samoa. – Tuiatua Tupua Tamasese Efi, 2018 O a ia Taumafa? O Taumafa Manogi, ua fa‘atusaina lea i le fa‘aaogaina o le Gagana e fafaga ai tama a Samoa e Faatonu, Fa‘asino, Faapoto ma Fesoota‘i ai. E leitioa fo‘i le Fa‘autaga ma le ‘au fai Tofā a fa‘apea mai: “O fānau a tagata e fafaga i ‘upu ma tala ‘ae ‘o tama a manu o fuga o lā‘au.” O la‘u gagana,o le taula lea o lo‘u olaga aoaoina, o le faavae malosi ma le mafuaaga o le manuia o lo‘u taumafai i totonu o Niusila. O se pine faamau foi o suesuega o loo faapea mai, a malamalama le tagata i lana gagana muamua, e faigofie ona fa‘aofi se isi gagana i lona olaga1. Na ou galue o se faiaoga i Samoa ma sa fa‘aaogaina le Gagana Samoa o le Gagana fa‘atonu i aoga. I le galue ai i Niusila nei, na faigofie ona feso‘ota‘i, tusitusi ma talanoa i le Gagana Peretania ona o le lelei o la‘u fa‘asamoa. E faapea foi le maitau i fanau o loo autova‘a

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Lynda Stuart
Reflections of a president

When asked to share some reflections on my three years as NZEI Te Riu Roa President, I was prompted to think back to the very beginning of this journey. I have attended many annual meetings over the years and seen many presidents presiding over them. I would watch them weave their magic over debates and questions, and manage tense moments. I used to marvel at their skill and wisdom. In those early years, not once did I think it would one day be me in that place. The last three years have been an absolute rollercoaster ride. It wasn’t easy, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. The opportunity to represent and advocate for our members and our tamariki locally, nationally and internationally is a great privilege. The last three years have been an absolute rollercoaster ride. It wasn’t easy, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. The dumping of National Standards and charter schools brought us hope of change from a neoliberal and market-driven “one-size-fits-all” approach to education. The conversations about a 30-year vision for education with the review of Tomorrow’s Schools and a 10-year strategic plan for early childhood education, a focus on those children who

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