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Teachers who inspired, focus of new website

Hon Hekia Parata

Minister of Education

10 February 2013

Embargoed until 3.30pm

Media Statement
Teachers who inspired, focus of new website

A new website aimed at acknowledging the life-long impact that teachers have on their students’ lives has been launched today by the Education Minister, Hon Hekia Parata.

‘Inspired by U’ is a website designed to recognise and celebrate teachers and educators who have made a difference to their student’s lives,” Ms Parata says.

The website invites people to go online and write a virtual postcard to the teacher that inspired them most.

Around 200 prominent New Zealanders, including Prime Minister John Key, have taken part and written to a former teacher telling them why they inspired them.

“I am very fortunate that I can remember a range of teachers who inspired me throughout all my years of education”, says Ms Parata.

“I’d like that to be the experience of every young New Zealander, and that’s why we have been investing in a programme of initiatives to raise the quality of teaching and leadership, and keep, grow, and attract the best in to the profession”.

“I think everyone can remember at least one teacher who had a real impact on their time at school and the ‘Inspired by U’ initiative is a great way of recognising those teachers,” says Ms Parata.

“Celebrating excellence in education is an important part of the Government’s commitment to raising the status of the teaching profession, and publicly acknowledging the powerful contribution the profession makes to lifting overall student achievement.

“Hosting the International Summit on the Teaching Profession in March together with Festivals of Education in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, introducing the Prime Minister’s Education Excellence Awards, establishing the new professional body EDUCANZ, and the $359million investment into better career pathways, are all part of acknowledging the profession, raising its status, and recognising the critical contribution that quality education achievement makes to the future prosperity of New Zealand,” says Ms Parata.

“I have filled out my postcard, and I invite all New Zealanders to send a message of acknowledgement to the teacher or teachers that inspired them.”

To contribute your story, go online to www.inspiredbyU.org.nz.

For more information about the Festivals of Education visitwww.festivalofeducation.co.nz, and for the Prime Minister’s Awards go towww.pmawards.education.govt.nz


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