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Government proposal to improve quality of learning

Sunday 23July 2000 Media Statement

Government proposal to improve quality of learning

A proposed new Education Council will have a significant impact on the quality of children's learning, Education Minister Trevor Mallard said today.

Trevor Mallard today released a consultation document seeking the views of parents, teachers, the education sector and other interested parties on proposals for the council. The document will be sent this week to every school in the country as well as other organisations and is available online.

The Education Council will replace the Teacher Registration Board and will promote best practice and high standards in the profession in both schools and early childhood education.

“A vibrant teaching profession with the skills and capability relevant to the new millennium is vital to our future,” Trevor Mallard said.

“The standard of teaching is critical to learning. I want to encourage a high quality teaching profession so students can achieve the best possible educational outcomes.

"My vision is for an Education Council that provides a new professional forum for teaching, and plays a major role in maintaining and developing the capability of the teaching profession.”

Trevor Mallard said that when the Education Council takes over from the Teacher Registration Board it will have wider powers and additional responsibilities. The final composition and functions of the Education Council will be decided following the consultation.

“I envisage that the majority of the Council will be teachers. This consultation is an ideal opportunity for teachers to influence the shape of the organisation that will support and promote the teaching profession in the future.”

The proposed functions of the council also include administering a new requirement for police and character checks of all staff working in schools and early childhood centres. Currently only teaching staff are subject to such checks as part of the registration process.

"The Government feels this is an important aspect of our responsibility to make schools as safe as possible for children," Trevor Mallard said.

The Education Council will be established through legislation to be introduced to Parliament later this year and passed next year.

For further information about the consultation check the Education Council website http://www.edcouncil.govt.nz .


ENDS

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