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Gateway will build bridges between school and work

Hon Steve Maharey
Associate Minister of Education (Tertiary Education)


6 June 2000


New Gateway will build bridges between school and work

$4 million is to be provided in the Budget to pilot a new Gateway programme designed to improve the transition from secondary school into the workforce, Associate Education (Tertiary Education) Minister Steve Maharey announced today.

Mr Maharey made the announcement this morning while addressing the Hospitality Standards Institute. Gateway will give young New Zealanders the opportunity to mix experience in a variety of workplaces with their class work. Students will be able to include real-life employment experience as part of their secondary curriculum and have this build toward nationally recognised qualifications. $4 million of the existing STAR budget is being re-prioritised over the next three years to fund pilot programmes in the 2001 and 2002 school years.

"Young people are the priority focus of the Government's employment and skills strategy. Gateway provides a further skills pathway for senior secondary students, enabling them to chose to begin vocational qualifications and gain real job experience while they are still at school.

"The need for effective work and life skills training is very real. Too many young people are languishing in unemployment unable to take up the high-wage, high-skills jobs being opened up in our economy.

"Young people deserve better and New Zealand deserves better because we must raise skill levels in our economy if we are to sustain economic growth and close the gaps.

"Students in the Gateway programme will be able to develop their vocational skills while still at school. They will be able to get first hand experience of what it's like in the workforce and also to begin the qualifications needed in today's job market.

"Gateway compliments our new Modern Apprenticeships programme. A review now underway into how existing STAR funds are being used will help to finalise the shape of the programme.

"Gateway will be piloted over the 2001 and 2002 school years. The pilots will be evaluated to see how the programme should run in future years," Steve Maharey said.

ENDS

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