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Tokoroa teachers band together to gain future-focused skills


A record number of Tokoroa teachers have signed up to postgraduate training in digital and collaborative learning by leading education provider The Mind Lab.

Enrolment was so high, The Mind Lab responded by deciding to deliver their award-winning programme onsite in Tokoroa.

"The overwhelming community support for this training has been fabulous and shows us a real willingness for our educators to go the extra mile for our young people," Jocelyn Hale, Principal of Forest View High School said.

"Tokoroa students deserve the very best education and educators. Collaboratively working together to ensure we have current, interesting ways to deliver curriculum and engage our students is a top priority for us," Jocelyn added.

Next year's changes to the curriculum with the introduction of Digital Technologies | Hangarau Matihiko has meant teachers increasingly around the country are recognising the need to refresh their practice.

In just six months, all schools and kura must implement the new Digital Technology areas of the New Zealand Curriculum. This ultimately means literacy, numeracy, and now, digital fluency will be the standards of educational success for New Zealand children.

National Postgraduate Director at The Mind Lab, Dr David Parsons, says this is an exciting time for education in New Zealand.

"While we may view ourselves as a country at the forefront of innovation, the recent OECD report 'Measuring Innovation in Education 2019' suggests that New Zealand is actually behind by world standards in terms of innovation in schools, particularly in terms of formal teacher education, so The Mind Lab is offering an engaging and collaborative way to address this through our innovative postgraduate qualification.”

"Although our use of ICT in schools is above average by international standards, it is how these tools are used that matters," David added.

The new Digital Technologies Technology Areas, "Computational Thinking" and "Designing and Developing Digital Outcomes", need to be integrated into the curriculum for all New Zealand students from year 1 - 10 for 2020.

The community of Tokoroa is on track to prepare for the rapid changes ahead.

Each teacher enrolled has committed to the required programme that runs from 4-8pm onsite at Forest View High School for 16 weeks before the teachers go online for the final 16 weeks.

"We are fortunate to partner with The Mind Lab and take advantage of their contemporary training which will benefit all our students," Jocelyn said.

"Each and every teacher deserves recognition for their efforts to refresh their training to teach the future problem solvers of this country."

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