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More kids receive early childhood education


More kids receive early childhood education


Participation in early childhood education is strengthening, particularly for Maori and Pasifika children, Education Minister Trevor Mallard said today.

“The latest Ministry of Education statistics show that 94 per cent of children have participated in early childhood education before they enter school. In 2004, the actual numbers of Maori children participating in early childhood education increased by 3.95 per cent to 35,232 compared to 2003, and by 1.88 per cent to 12,061 for Pasifika children," Trevor Mallard said.

“The Labour-led government has invested heavily in increasing the number of children in quality early childhood education - as research shows that if a child has received a top quality education before they get to school, then that will have a positive impact on their educational achievement in later years. These statistics show that this investment is showing positive early returns.

“We are also seeing steady progress towards a more qualified workforce and this will improve the quality of early childhood services available to families.

“The latest statistics also show that just over 22 per cent of teaching staff in teacher-led services were studying for early childhood education qualifications.

“The percentage of teachers with a qualification that meets teacher registration requirements has grown from 41 per cent in 2002 to 44 per cent in 2004. In Auckland, where the demand for qualified teachers is highest, 37 per cent of teachers have these qualifications (up from 33 per cent in 2002).

“All of this bodes well for reaching the targets that the government has set for improving quality and participation in the early childhood sector," Trevor Mallard said.

Other statistics are: The number of licensed and/or chartered ECE services is now 3,574 (up by 1.5 per cent from 2003) with most of the growth taking place in education and care services. The number of licence-exempt ECE playgroups is now 800 – up from 757 in 2003.

The latest early childhood statistics are available on www.minedu.govt.nz A fact sheet about the government's initiatives in early childhood education is attached.

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