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Independent Schools Of NZ Celebrate Ten Years

Independent Schools Of New Zealand Celebrate Ten Years

The Trustees/Governors, Heads and Bursars of Independent Schools of New Zealand hold their annual conference this weekend in Auckland to celebrate ten years of meeting as a combined group.

During the 1980s it became increasingly obvious that the three groups should combine their strengths to enhance the future vitality of independent schooling in New Zealand. The 1984–1990 Labour Government had removed all state support for independent schools and many schools were forced to become state integrated schools in order to remain financially viable. As a result the remaining schools formed the Independent Schools Council and the first combined conference for Principals, Governors and Bursars was held in 1992.

With the return of the National Government, and subsequent ongoing support since 1999 from Hon Trevor Mallard, who recognises the value of independent schools to the taxpayer, member schools have been able to plan with some degree of financial security. They meet this year in Auckland focussed on future pathways for independence.

Over the two days, Friday to Sunday, 17-19 May, the 150 delegates meeting at the Crowne Plaza will hear from:

Dr Paula Barrett, Clinical Psychologist from Griffith University, Queensland. She will talk about improving the resilience of children in school settings. This is essential with so many pressures on children and the demands on schools to assist families to cope.

Hon Bill English has examined the good things that happen in independent schools and looks at ways these can be implemented in the state sector. He is keen to provide parents with more choice when it comes to their child’s education.

Stephen Newton, (Chairperson of National Council of Independent Schools Australia) has prepared an in-depth paper explaining the state funding of non-government schools in Australia.

And Hon Marion Hobbs, substituting for Hon Trevor Mallard, will be talking about Government policy.

On Saturday, Dr John Hood and Bridget Wickham will talk about independent schools catching the KnowledgeWave, as well as challenging them to maximise their collective potential.

The pastoral care of international students and caring for children outside of nine to three in the school environment will also be discussed as these are two issues of great interest to members.

Senior students from local independent schools will also participate in the conference and provide delegates with their perspective on how schools can best meet the needs of this generation. A similar session was very successful at the KnowledgeWave Conference and these students have reacted enthusiastically to the invitation to be present.

Independent Schools of New Zealand’s 43 members are at the forefront of educational innovation in both teaching and management. They produce excellent results but are always striving to do better. This conference aims to provide ways for that to happen.


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