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Mahia i runga i te rangimārie me te ngākau māhaki

Tōtika - Balance
Mahia i runga i te rangimārie me te ngākau māhaki

With a peaceful mind and respectful heart,
we will always get the best results

E te whānau, ngā tumuaki o Aotearoa, tēnā koutou katoa

This week I opened the PB4L conference in Auckland. What an inspirational event with a theme of positivity, purpose and passion and an auditorium filled to capacity. It was a privilege to be mixing with over 500 teachers, principals and RTLBs from so many Kura Kaupapa Māori, Whare Kura and schools from across the country.

Associate Minister Louise Upston announced at the conference that PB4L will continue to be supported by the Ministry into the future. The audience was much appreciative of this commitment because they recognise the power of PB4L to transform the culture of schools to better manage behaviour and learning.

A highlight of the conference was listening to speakers who have been engaged in PB4L for a number of years. In his keynote address Iain Taylor described being passionate, positive and purposeful as following ten commandments, which he listed as:

• Never forget why you did something
• Beware of comfort zones
• Don’t be alone – get your A Team
• Perfect doesn’t exist but working towards it does!
• Steal good ideas relentlessly… we are all magpies!
• Do the worst first
• Press the off switch
• Remember the good times
• Do one thing at a time and do it well, relentlessly
• Do it slowly unless kids are being affected and therefore change is needed urgently

The 'ten commandments' sound simple but can help you solve some very complex issues. I commend them to you!

I also acknowledge the sterling work of the organising committee who pulled together such an inspiring and energetic collection of keynote speakers and presenters.

Update on Halswell Residential College
I promised that I would be promoting the continuation and expansion of the Halswell Residential College as an option for the growing number of severely behaviourally challenged young people in our communities, who deserve the best education we can give them. Since the Ministry has been reducing the numbers eligible to apply to Halswell over recent years, we were concerned that the school was on a trajectory for closure.

I am pleased to say that I am now in receipt of a letter from Deputy Secretary Katrina Casey which states, and I quote:

"Halswell is not on a trajectory for closure...In 2016 the Minister of Education also agreed to a request from Halswell to become fully co-educational, removing the limit on the number of girls that can be enrolled at the school. The Ministry is committed to keeping residential schooling available as an option for young people who will benefit from this."

I am delighted that the Ministry has told us it is committed to Halswell Residential College for the long term and given that there are currently spaces available at this exceptionally well conducted and resourced school, I encourage you when discussing options with parents and caregivers of your severely challenged young people, to include Halswell as a possible option, whether for the short term or longer term. The expertise available at Halswell is outstanding and many more young people could more quickly and safely learn to manage their behaviour and learn useful skills by attending the College.

NZPF Conference, Queenstown
It is just three weeks before we open our own conference in Queenstown. I am delighted to report that, like the PB4L conference, we have almost reached capacity. If you intend to register but have left it to the last minute, please don't leave it any longer!
We don't want you missing out so Click here to to register

NZPF Elections
Don't forget to exercise your democratic rights to vote in the NZPF elections which open tomorrow. Look out for your voting forms which will arrive from ElectioNZ in your inbox.
You can use our election to get in some voting practise for the general election on September 23rd!


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