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School curriculum gives guidance on values

5 November 2004

School curriculum gives guidance on values

The school curriculum framework gives guidance about attitudes and values that are important to New Zealand Society, Associate Education Minister, Marian Hobbs said when asked to comment on Cardinal Tom Williams' call for ethics and philosophy to be taught in all secondary schools.

"Our schools are expected to reinforce the commonly held values of individual and collective responsibility which underpin our democractic society," Marian Hobbs said. "The New Zealand Curriculum Framework sets out the values of honesty, reliability, respect for others, respect for the law, tolerance, fairness, caring or compassion, non-sexism and non-racism. This is not intended to be a full and exhaustive list. Students are encouraged to develop and clarify their own values and beliefs, and to respect and be sensitive to others whose values and attitudes may be different from their own.

"The Health and Physical Education curriculum deals with personal and social well-being. It encompasses the physical, social, emotional, intellectual , and spiritual dimensions of a person's development. Students are encouraged to set realistic and worthwhile personal goals, and to develop healthy patterns of living.

"However, a major review of the curriculum in 2002 identified that social cohesion and citizenship need to be more explicit in our curriculum. The CEO of the NZ Catholic Education Office, Brother Pat Lynch, has taken an integral role in this review. The New Zealand Curriculum Project aims to reframe, refocus and revitalise the current curriculum.

"I doubt that any High School Principal would argue that their assemblies were value-free. It is the practice of values, their integration into daily lives, that is so difficult to ensure a 100 per cent success rate."


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