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Education And Anti-Violence Campaigns A Focus

October 31 2007

Media Release (For Immediate Release)

Education And Anti-Violence Campaigns A Focus

Education and an on-going campaign against family violence will be priorities for Waitakere Mayor Bob Harvey over the next three years.

Speaking at tonight’s inaugural meeting of the Council, Mayor Harvey- elected for an unprecedented sixth time- said that the special anti-violence project he established with MP Dr Pita Sharples would continue.

“Family violence is not OK anywhere so I, Dr Pita Sharples, the other members of the Mayoral Taskforce Against Family Violence and those people who work in their family violence are tirelessly will continue to take the lead in putting an end to this scourge,” told new Councillors and around 150 of their family and friends who had gathered for the swearing-in ceremony.

Mayor Harvey said the other issue he wishes to address is education.

“Unfortunately the figures show we have a very low educational achievement level and an acute number of low achieving school leavers.”

While Waitakere has excellent schools too many students – nearly a quarter - attend schools outside the city, Mayor Harvey said.

He noted that only 19% of school leavers in Waitakere leave with University Entrance (compared to 37 percent in the Auckland region) and that 14% leave school with little or no formal attainment.

“We also have a very low uptake on tertiary education,” said Mayor Harvey.

“I know there are many people who are as concerned as I am and that there has been some significant work recently looking at how e might achieve better education outcomes in the city.”

“I am looking forward to the Waitakere Education and Learning plan due for release in December.

The purpose of this plan is to initiate a whole of community approach focusing on the strategies and actions we need to put in place in order to achieve a top notch learning environment in the city.”

“Once the plan is released the next step will be to prioritise action areas and develop a work programme for implementation and I am hoping I can be of some help in that regard which is why I am keen to set up a Mayoral Taskforce on Education,” he said.

“Such an initiative will provide high level support and leadership and a way to bring the different strands of this work together.”

“This is an incredibly important issue because without an education young lives are being marginalised.”

The Mayor also pointed to two major projects which will “transform” the City.

“We are on the threshold of two of the biggest projects this city has ever seen - the undergrounding and redevelopment of New Lynn and the northern strategic growth area.

“The northern strategic growth area will transform Waitakere’s competitive position in the Auckland region.

By 2016 our population is predicted to be 223,000 which will make us bigger than North Shore City.

Suffice to say the project and its success is imperative to this city’s future not to mention incredibly exciting,” said Mayor Harvey.


© Scoop Media

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