November 15, 2004
NZEI Supports Early Childhood Education Awareness Week
The country’s largest education union supports Early Childhood Education Awareness Week which began today.
The event is organised by Te Tari Puna Ora o Aotearoa/ the New Zealand Childcare Association to highlight the importance of early childhood education.
NZEI Te Riu Roa represents 43,000 members working in all four education sectors: early childhood, primary, secondary and tertiary. Of this total 3500 NZEI members work as teachers and support staff in early childhood education centres.
“We fully support Early Childhood Education Awareness Week,” says NZEI Te Riu Roa National President, Colin Tarr.
“This year’s celebrations comes a month after NZEI gained pay parity for a thousand early childhood teachers working primarily in community-owned not-for-profit services.”
“This was an historic achievement as it will lift their salaries to the same level as teachers working in primary and secondary schools and free kindergartens.”
“This provides real recognition that the work early childhood teachers do is as important as their colleagues in primary and secondary schools and should be given equal value.”
“NZEI members support Early Childhood Awareness Week because they know from working in the education system how important it is for children to receive quality early childhood education.”
“This is because it lays a foundation on which children can build as they progress through primary and secondary school and on to tertiary education or into the workforce,” says Colin Tarr.