• Give Students a Course Related Costs Increase due to Lockdown
    Last year during level four lockdown students were given the ability to borrow an extra $1000 against their student loan for course related costs. For many students this provided a lifeline and peace of mind in a time of great financial insecurity. Lockdown often creates extra costs for students in terms of equipment needed to study at home, extra power and heating bills etc while simultaneously causing many students to have less income coming in. We have been in level four lockdown for two weeks with Auckland just announced as having at least two more weeks of level four. However the government has not increased course related costs or provided any direct support to students. This needs to change.
    47 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Bronte Page
  • Careers in Kapa Haka
    The current issue with recruiting and the retention of qualified and professional kapa haka tutors in schools is a serious concern… Tamariki love kapa haka! The number of students who are participating and passionate about kapa haka is growing all the time! The student's knowledge of Te Reo me ona Tikanga Māori and confidence grow as they learn waiata, haka and other skills. We have seen improvements in the attendance and engagement of many students through a good quality kapa haka group. But finding the right people to fulfil that teaching role is a major and ongoing struggle. The Problem for Kura... As a national education priority (NEG 9 and NEG 10), the ability to find affordable, suitable and committed tutors shouldn't be so difficult. Schools are scrambling around every year to find professional tutors. On more than one occasion we have had people commit to tutoring our groups and then pull out in week one, term one! The anxiety this induces when you have up to 140 kids sitting in a hall ready to learn kapa haka is intense! The solution to this has been employing independent professional tutors. However, they are expensive, especially for smaller schools. Furthermore, the pull between priority curriculum areas and funding Māori performing arts is difficult for principals and boards of trustees. Funding is often prioritised to literacy and numeracy, science and technology, PE and LEOTC (NEG 5). The responsibility for funding Māori Performing Arts is a choice that should not be on the heads of individual principals and boards. As we are bound by Te Tiriti o Waitangi (Article Two), to protect this taonga and this should be done at a national level. Tutors are hard to find and relying on whānau to do the teaching of kapa haka is neither a respectful nor a sustainable option. Once you do find a volunteer (or someone who does the job for koha) the retention of tutors is difficult, life circumstances change for volunteers, more financially viable opportunities come up, new educational opportunities arise and family commitments, at times, take precedent. Many tutors cannot commit (for free) long-term to a school program. The problem for professional tutors... To run a free-market-style business funded by schools can be difficult for kapa haka experts. Particularly in relation to supporting families and maintaining a start-up business model or in the long term. Tutors can only charge what schools can afford and need to do all the mahi of running a business, understanding finances and organsing amongst many schools. They, therefore, need to have a certain amount of energy, confidence, and know-how to take these risks to manage this effectively. This is not an easy model for many people to set-up and run long term. As stated previously, schools are left to rely on whānau who volunteer or are given koha. This often puts pressure on whānau who have their own work and family commitments. It is not respectful to ask for so much for free, in a world where money is the formal acknowledgment of value. This feels disrespectful and is disheartening, to say the least for those who are asked to give so much for so little. On top of that, some tutors may not have the teaching skills required and it can be a daunting task for a whanau member (or two) to tutor a large group of children. There is usually little or no teaching training for these people and it can be seriously challenging for them. In summary, there are few or no professional and secure career pathways for people skilled in kapa haka. We need to create a system where people can achieve success in a Māori world and then have that honored with financial stability and security in the wider community. In short, the current system is not respectful of Māori mahi or the enormous value and importance placed on kapa haka by our tamariki. The schools are doing the best they can to fill this gap, but it shouldn't be this difficult to honour our commitments to Te Reo me Ona Tikanga Māori, me, Te Tiriti o Waitangi. We are calling that the taonga of kapa haka is protected through supported career pathways, that our tamariki have no obstacles to participation and that the Government and Iwi in partnership have a discussion and make a plan to implement structures for a long term tautoko of kapa haka. So join us to fight for paid professional kapa haka tutors in every school!
    287 of 300 Signatures
    Created by Anna-Marie Stewart
  • Rename Colonial Street Signs in Kirikiriroa/Hamilton City.
    This is important because street signs must be names of people who have up-held honor and integrity in their lives. They must be those who were role models and mentors, so our children and community can grow a sense of pride for themselves, in the same way: selfless and serving. Instead, we have names of those who committed violent crimes of theft and murder against women, children and the elderly. Bryce Street, Cameron Street, Grey Street and Von Tempsky Street must be among the first street signs to be removed. They are cruel reminders "of the devastating effects of British imperialism and its continous impact on Maori" (Pokere-Phillips, 2020). And which impact affects ALL New Zealanders. Please act now!
    37 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Jacquelyn Elkington
  • End school streaming - let all our tamariki thrive
    As a nation we pride ourselves on being fair. We want to believe that no matter where you are born or into what circumstances, we all have an equal opportunity to achieve our potential. But right now, an unfair practice that divides and labels tamariki (children) from the very first day they arrive at school is standing in the way of that vision. This practice is known as streaming. It’s often called ‘in-class grouping’ in primary schools and ‘banding’ in secondary schools. At primary school, children are put into groups for reading or maths. The top groups get more challenging work, more teacher time and higher expectations. Being put in the bottom class takes away children’s motivation and self-belief. They begin to think of themselves as less clever or capable. Streaming is a systemic barrier to Māori success that operates at every level in our schools, particularly in mathematics and science. Our research has found streaming is one of the most significant barriers to future success, pushing rangatahi off course.[1,2] Streaming can determine the pathways available to kids long after the decision is made. Many students who were told they’re low ability, do not or cannot enter full NCEA courses. The impact of streaming narrows career choices to low skill, low paid, and high risk jobs and employment. We know that it is bad for everybody, but it is especially bad for Māori and Pasifika students. This is systemic racism in action. Ending streaming is one small step that will have a huge outcome for the futures of our rangatahi. An increasing number of schools around Aotearoa have decided to run mixed ability classrooms with incredible results. These schools have all used alternative ways of teaching and have seen students do better academically, especially Māori and Pasifika students. They used tools that brought teachers and students closer together - like learning more about each child’s passions and goals for maths, and scrapping arbitrary deadlines to assess students when they were ready. Academic achievement improves across the board, kids’ self-belief, motivation and aspirations soar, and social and ethnic barriers amongst the students decline. We need the government to step up to support an equitable education system that enables all rangatahi to be inspired by their future, confident in their culture, thriving in their work and empowered to succeed. Add your name today to join us in calling on the government to end streaming in schools and stand up for our tamariki! This is a movement led by Tokona Te Raki - The Maori Futures Collective http://www.maorifutures.co.nz/. *** [1] He Awa Ara Rau - A journey of many paths, 2019 http://www.maorifutures.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/He-Awa-Ara-Rau-A-Journey-of-Many-Paths-Nov-2019.pdf [2] End streaming in Aotearoa, 2021 http://www.maorifutures.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/TTR_Streaming_Document.pdf
    2,846 of 5,000 Signatures
    Created by Philip Prendergast
  • Create a Teaching Council that works for teachers
    The teaching profession has been facing a supply crisis for a long time. Attracting and retaining quality teachers is paramount if we are going to maintain the high standards of teaching and learning that New Zealanders expect and deserve. The pressures of the job are already such that young graduates and those considering a career change feel they can earn better money and have a better work-life balance elsewhere. Having to cover the cost of a registration and certification personally – unlike nurses or social workers, for instance, whose registration costs are covered by their employers – is another barrier that the profession cannot afford. Teachers deserve a Teaching Council that they can trust, and that trusts them. If we are to keep the profession to the world-leading standard that it is today, we must honour that with fair fees, a high-trust model of certification, and a Council that performs its core functions effectively and efficiently. Nothing more, and nothing less.
    3,171 of 4,000 Signatures
    Created by Chris Abercrombie
  • Make Waka Ama an Olympic sport
    Waka ama is significantly and widely practiced in new zealand, tahiti and hawai'i. The level of competition is high throughout Te Moana Nui a Kiwa and the sport is still going strong despite Covid-19. There is cultural recognition of mana in the sport, outrigger canoe racing is a competitive and dominant sport, widely seen as good spectating friendly, the skill and technique is robust hard and fast, power and speed. Races: Midgets: W6 250m Intermediates: W6 500m straight & W6 500m turns / W1 500m & W1 250m dash J16s: W6 1000m turns & W6 500m straight / W1 500m & W1 250m dash J19s: W6 1000m turns & W6 500m straight / W1 500m & W1 250m dash Opens: W6 1000m turns & W6 500m straights / W1 500m & W1 250m dash Masters: W6 1000m turns & W6 500m straights / W1 500m & W1 250m dash
    20 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Pareoranga Te Kata Picture
  • Retain Media Studies at NCEA Level 1
    Given that the recent coronavirus pandemic has revealed glaring gaps in media literacy and has forced a massive increase in media consumption, the fact that a subject specifically designed to inform young people about this in a more comprehensive and subject-specific way than other "traditional subjects" is being removed is only likely to intensify this. Chris Hipkins himself complained about the misinformation going around so the fact that his Ministry is doing this implies that either he isn't sincere about solving the problem or lacks the foresight required to do so. To be clear, this is not to demean the subjects that were retained such as History or Geography (many Media Teachers would have taught one or the other at some point in their careers) or to place Media above other subjects that were removed, but rather a criticism of the narrowing of the choices available for our learners in a world where new disciplines are created at a regular basis. While their own media release claims "Feedback from thousands of stakeholders was factored into the Level 1 subject changes, which will be introduced from 2023" it is clear that this decision ignored the feedback from a sizeable number of Media teachers. Their suggestion that these subjects are taught as contexts for Social Studies (or English) comes with a number of flaws: 1) if the proposed changes to English and Science are any indication, then it's very likely that it will be difficult to form a Media Studies course without having to force students to severely narrow their choices of Social Sciences. How will they be able to do this if standards have to be reused across courses? All that this will achieve is more competition and conflict between teachers of these subjects. 2) Media Studies itself blends specific content knowledge with theory and concepts ranging from economics, sociology, psychology, literary theory, audience theories and so much more, meaning that to pigeonhole it as just another version of another subject is to heavily dilute it. 3) the numbers that many Media Studies departments have spent years trying to build are likely to drop and the broad and varied nature of NZ education is going to be watered down by this attempt to pick and choose the important foundations that our students need to function in the modern world. So to sum up: if you think that it's important for our learners to be able to learn early on about the media that surrounds them, then sign this petition.
    471 of 500 Signatures
    Created by B Uy
  • Save Our Kindys – Keep The Kindergarten Experience Alive!
    This petition is to demonstrate that the operational changes to be made to Mason Avenue Kindergarten, Nina Busing Kindergarten and Papakura West Kindergarten are not supported by families and the community. The Counties Manukau Kindergarten Association (CMKA) have been rolling out operational changes to all the kindergartens, which has resulted in the loss of the traditional kindy model. If this is not stopped, the last three kindergartens yet to change will be open from 8am – 3:30pm/5pm and will operate throughout the school holidays. Key points: • The quality of teaching and learning will be negatively affected by these operational changes. • Introducing multiple sessions and flexible drop off and pick up times will change the structure and create an unsettling environment for children. • Parents send their children to kindergarten to receive high quality early childhood education under a play based model that reflects the school day. • Longer hours for children - we believe the six hour session time of 8:30am – 2:30pm is long enough for 3-5 year olds. Current research supports this. • The kindergarten will be required to fill the spots for the extra hours so that funding is maximised. • Children need the holidays to rest and recharge, as do the teachers. • Kindergartens have long attracted high quality teachers and risk losing their staff due to unfavourable working conditions. • The choice parents have in regards to early childhood education is removed. A traditional kindergarten is different from a privatised daycare model. There are numerous other childcare centres in Franklin that have longer opening hours and availability during term breaks. • There will no longer be term breaks and fee paying families must continue to pay, regardless of whether their child attends or not. We strongly believe these changes are not in the best interests of our children and community. We propose that the CMKA responds to the community and Mason Avenue Kindergarten, Nina Busing Kindergarten and Papakura West Kindergarten continue to operate as a traditional kindergarten by keeping the current hours of 8:30am – 2:30pm and not operating during term breaks. These three centres are considered highly functioning kindergartens with large waitlists, active parent communities and strong fundraising capabilities - why fix something that isn’t broken? We will deliver the petition directly to CMKA CEO Calmar Ulberg and The Board of Management.
    718 of 800 Signatures
    Created by Jody Christie
  • Save the Wellington Music Centre
    Saturday morning music has been a New Zealand institution since 1957. It provides an opportunity for kids from all sorts of backgrounds, who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford lessons, a chance to learn an instrument and to develop into life long musicians. Wellington Music Centre is funded through the Ministry of Education’s out of hours programme, providing lessons and affordable instrument hire to any child up to high school, in Wellington. Closing the Centre will prevent kids from discovering their musical passion and make the Wellington music scene less diverse and inclusive. Island Bay School must make efforts to find another solution to any problem it has hosting the Centre. One that continues the long lasting positive impact on kids in Wellington, the cultural capital. We ask the School to keep it open and work with the Education Ministry, the community and other experts on ways to manage their administration problems. The solution needs to allow the children of Wellington access to affordable lessons.
    566 of 600 Signatures
    Created by Louis Holland Picture
  • Open Letter: Five To Thrive
    Too many of our children in Aotearoa are missing out on the basics they need to thrive. With political will, we can change this to ensure all of our children have a bright future. We are asking our friends, whānau, and colleagues - Kiwis that care about our children, to sign on to this open letter to ask that every child in Aotearoa gets the five basics they need to do well now, and into the future. To find out more, check out Five To Thrive https://www.fivetothrive.nz/ To keep you updated with the campaign your signature details will be shared with the four organisations leading this campaign; Barnardos, Save the Children, Te Kāhui Mana Ririki Trust, and Whānau Āwhina Plunket.
    604 of 800 Signatures
    Created by Five To Thrive Picture
  • Consent Education should be compulsory for First-Year Tertiary Students
    In a world free from sexual violence, students would be able to learn and achieve, without fear, harm or violence. Students would be able to walk through campus, attend lectures, engage in tutorials, knowing that they are valued, respected, and treated equally. Starting tertiary study is an important time in a young person's life, and sets them up for their entire life course 'pipeline'. When a student faces barriers or trauma during their study, it often has lifelong ripple effects and consequences. Recent research shows that 1 in 3 students will experience sexual harm during study [1], and this mirrors Thursdays in Black's own findings, which highlighted that over 50% of participants had experienced some form of sexual harm during study [2]. Research on wider populations shows that in Aotearoa, 1 in 3 women, 1 in 6 men, and 1 in 2 transgender people will experience sexual harm. Research also shows that women, Māori, Queer/Takatāpui, and disabled students are at significantly higher risk of experiencing harm in comparison to other identities, and that 90% of sexually harmful situations happen between people that know each other, for example friends, relationships, colleagues, or family. At Thursdays in Black, our vision is to improve these circumstances, by mandating sexual consent education for first years students. This education will empower young people by giving them the skills to navigate and create their own healthy sexual relationships, help prevent harmful behaviours, and contribute to the ongoing culture change of tertiary institutions. By teaching these skills to students aged 17-20, we will be setting them up with a kete of tools that will benefit them throughout their life, and help make our communities safer. Yet at present, there is no legal requirement for tertiary institutions to offer compulsory courses to teach students about sexual consent. New Zealand institutions currently have a fragmented approach to consent education, with different institutions offering different levels of engagement, different approaches, and some with out any programmes at all. At Thursdays in Black, we believe that Aotearoa can do better, and see that implementing such an education policy as not only urgent, but long overdue. We request that the Minister pass legislation requiring tertiary institutions in Aotearoa to provide sexual consent education to all first-year tertiary students. Such education should be a research-based program, created with and facilitated by subject matter experts and the sexual violence sector, it should engage student leaders, operate on a bi-cultural model that upholds Te Tiriti o Waitangi, and reflect an intersectional approach that respects the disproportionate impact sexual violence has on specific groups. Tertiary institutions, for the most part, remain out-dated and traditional in their thinking -- often reinforcing a rape culture of power imbalances, misogyny, and toxicity. This does not make a safe environment for our tertiary students. Help make education safe. Sign the petition today to call on the Minister to implement compulsory consent courses for first-year students. 1. Unpublished Phd Thesis by Kayla Stewart, for a preliminary discussion of her findings, see https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/113090659/a-third-of-women-university-students-report-being-sexually-assaulted-what-do-we-owe-them 2. In 2017, Thursdays in Black Aotearoa conducted a report titled ‘In Our Own Words’, which details the extent to which tertiary students experienced sexual violence prior to, and during, their studies You can find it here: https://library.nzfvc.org.nz/cgi-bin/koha/opac-detail.pl?biblionumber=5557
    896 of 1,000 Signatures
    Created by Jahla Lawrence
  • Save our school libraries
    The School Library Association of New Zealand Aotearoa (SLANZA) is launching a nationwide campaign to highlight the plight of our school libraries. SLANZA is deeply concerned about the demise of school libraries in Aotearoa. It is estimated that of the 2500 schools in New Zealand only 900 have a library. Stuart McNaughtons recent report entitled “The literacy landscape in Aotearoa New Zealand” states that 52% of 15 year olds only read if they have to and 28% think reading is a waste of time. Yet his report did not mention School Libraries once and we know from international research that schools with a well-resourced library and specialist library staff positively impacts learning outcomes across all year levels. Our libraries are being closed, relocated to hallway cupboards, are having budgets slashed. We have low decile high schools trying to raise literacy rates but can only fund their library $1000.00 a year to operate and are buying books from Op Shops to stock the shelves. These stories are not acceptable in New Zealand. SLANZA believes that all school students in New Zealand, at every level of their education, should have access to effective school library services that will support their reading and learning. We plan to promote the value and necessity of every student having access to a school library, supported by a specialist librarian with a budget and hours to provide a high-functioning learning environment within all school communities in Aotearoa New Zealand. The Ministry of Education will mandate every student to have access to a school library staffed by specialist school librarians and is Ministry of Education funded. We know school libraries make a difference for our students for their well being, hauora, their learning outcomes, their ability to critically analyse and their growth in empathy. School libraries transform and we in this campaign will be informing our nation of the lack of funding, space and staffing within our school libraries. We want the government to listen and to act, so our school libraries can be resourced fully to continue to transform the lives of all of our students. Our campaign will be launched on September 1st and is called “School Libraries Transform.” Please refer to our website for further information pertaining to our campaign. http://www.schoollibrariestransform.org.nz/
    5,628 of 6,000 Signatures
    Created by Sasha Eastwood-Bennitt