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Mäori benefit from 2nd Chance Education Initiative

Skill New Zealand
Media release 16 November 2001

Mäori benefit from 'Second Chance Education Initiatives'

A recently released effectiveness audit shows that Skill New Zealand's Training Opportunities and Youth Training programmes are helping Mäori with low or no qualifications to gain nationally recognised qualifications and to get jobs. The audit (conducted by Te Puni Kökiri) concludes that the programmes are meeting their objectives in respect of Mäori.

The Training Opportunities and Youth Training programmes are designed to remove barriers to employment and further education and training, for groups with no or low qualifications. Skill New Zealand's role is to develop and purchase a range of training for these groups in consultation with the Department of Work and Income (DWI) and the Ministry of Education (MOE).

Bob Carson, Skill New Zealand's Strategic Manager Mäori, says that the programmes are a good example of mainstream programmes that are delivering good results for Mäori.

"The programmes are not solely aimed at Mäori, they're actually mainstream courses aimed at the long-term unemployed, domestic purpose beneficiaries, Workbridge clients, and youth with low or no qualifications. So the fact that they're showing good outcomes for Mäori is very encouraging.

"The audit also found that the training programmes are not only helping the target Mäori group to gain useful skills for the job market, but that the level of satisfaction and enthusiasm that trainees expressed in relation to their courses was extremely high," says Mr Carson.

Mr Carson considers that the level of enthusiasm apparent among trainees for foundation education highlights the value of this style of education and training, particularly for young Mäori who have come through the mainstream schooling system with low or no qualifications.

Mr Carson says that while the audit results affirm that the providers of training are doing a good job, the report also includes recommended activities for ongoing programme development. The report highlights the better the quality of the training provider the better the outcomes for trainees.

"The upshot is that Youth Training and Training Opportunities are working well for Mäori, but there are areas we could do better. If our programmes are to continue to be useful and current it is imperative that we consider and act on the recommendations.

"The findings are promising, but we cannot afford to become complacent. If we are to deliver useful programmes for Mäori we must strive for continued quality and improvement always," says Mr Carson.

ENDS For further information please contact: Bob Carson Strategic Manager Mäori, Skill New Zealand - Pükenga Aotearoa 04 801-7273 or 025 740-211, bob.carson@skillnz.govt.nz, www.skillnz.govt.nz


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