Council welcomes new curriculum – with one big reservation
12 April, 2017
Early Childhood Council welcomes new early childhood education curriculum – with one big reservation
The Early Childhood Council has praised today’s (12 April) release of an update to New Zealand’s early childhood education curriculum – ‘with one big reservation’.
CEO Peter Reynolds said the two-decade-old curriculum, Te Whāriki, was due for an update, but that ‘this update will have minimal impact if the Government fails to fund the professional development necessary to bring teachers up to speed’.
Mr Reynolds said that 20 years ago, when the old curriculum was introduced, the then Government ‘promised resources to help early childhood services implement it’.
But these did not arrive in sufficient quantity, and implementation was, and remained ‘uneven across the country’.
The $4 million dollars the current Government had allocated for professional development to implement the new curriculum was ‘a small amount that might not get the job done’, Mr Reynolds said. And he was ‘concerned that history might repeat itself’.
‘There’s only limited point in a refreshed curriculum if many services fail to implement it,’ he said.
Mr Reynolds said the new curriculum was well-thought through and presented, and called on the early childhood education sector to work with the Ministry of Educaton to implement it thoroughly.
He said the reduction of learning outcomes from 118 to 20 would focus teachers and ‘make everything much more comprehensible for parents’, and the improved links between the early childhood and school curriculums would help create ‘a seamless experience for children and their families’.
The Early Childhood Council is New Zealand’s leading representative body for childcare centre owners, committees and management. It has a membership of more than 1100 early childhood education centres.