Powered by ZigaForm version 3.9.2.4

Pages

Better Funding, Better Learning
better funding group photo - banner

The Better Funding Heartland Tour, 2017

The Better Funding Heartland Tour took in regional towns all over New Zealand in one amazing campervan tour. On our trip, we got to hear some amazing stories from families and educators about what they're doing in their communities, as well as seeing the real-world impact of the last few years of funding decisions.

See our tour diaries below.

Auckland City

April 5, 2017

Early morning saw the team at May Road School before visiting the NZEI offices to meet up with REGAL members involved in their termly workshop. The activism of this group is always assured and they took time out from preparing a submission to the Minister to sign on for #Betterfunding. As luck would have it a group of Principals doing media training were on hand to add their signatures.
At the end of the school day the van was at Owairaka school in Mount Albert. Support Staff Rep Foram Shah was a sight to behold flagging down parents and caregivers from many cultures and motivating them to sign the Support Staff petition. It was great to see so many new immigrant and refugee parents keen to learn about the cause of #Betterfunding.

amavi may road princ media regal

The Heartland Tour visits the Kaipara

April 4, 2017

Before hitting the supercity proper the #Betterfunding van spent a day in the North West rural area on the southern Kaipara and everywhere it was met with support. We’ve said it before: people in the provinces get the need for fair and equitable funding of education. They know that cuts to schooling and pre-school bite particularly hard in smaller communities.
Early in the day Melissa Jackson from Waimauku School joined Tony Dunn and Chris Stuart on the van visiting Waimauku Shool and kindergarten.Waimauku School representing for #Betterefunding

Waimauku Kindergarten 100% behind quality ECE

Waimauku Kindergarten 100% behind quality ECE.

It was then on to Helensville Primary and Parakai School where teaching and support staff turned out to show their support. The day ended at Kaipara College, where Teacher Aide Lee Fitzsimmons summarised the thoughts of all when she expressed concerns about the impact of poor funding decisions on vulnerable children.

Helensville Primary shouts out for better learning.

Helensville Primary shouts out for better learning.

Parakai staff united for their tamariki.

Parakai staff united for their tamariki.

Photo-bombing for #Betterfunding at Kaipara College.

Photo-bombing for #Betterfunding at Kaipara College.

Hibiscus Coast shines for #Betterfunding

March 31, 2017

After the rain in Rodney the Hibiscus Coast welcomed the Heartland Tour with sunshine as the team began early at Stanmore Bay School. Branch stalwart Julie Cooney, worksite rep Fran McFall and Branch President Claire Hunt worked the arriving parent community and by start of school had added 120 new signatures to our Support Staff petition.

Claire, Julie and Fran wait for early arrivals at Stanmore School

Claire, Julie and Fran wait for early arrivals at Stanmore School

Early kick-off at Stanmore Bay

Early kick-off at Stanmore Bay

Before our next scheduled spot we made a dash to Whangaparoa College to drop off materials at the invitation of Principal James Thomas. We then made a flying visit Fantails ECE before reaching Silverdale Primary in time for morning tea where teachers and support staff posed in front of the #Betterfunding van. They’re committed to taking large postcards out to thei community for signing and looking forward to presenting them to their MP.
Lunchtime saw the #Betterfunding bus in Orewa township where it was joined by support staff and teachers from Orewa North Primary. The conversations with shoppers were invaluable and the signatures flowed.
Our last school visit was to Stella Maris where a group of teachers and support staff engaged with large numbers of parents picking up their children. From there the battle van travelled to an autism workshop where sixty plus committed professionals needed no persuading to give support to the campaign to end the freeze and adequately fund our tamariki.

Teachers and Support Staff at Silverdale School say yes to #Betterfunding

Teachers and Support Staff at Silverdale School say yes to #Betterfunding

Autism workshop participants are enthusiast supporters of the Heartland campaign.

Autism workshop participants are enthusiast supporters of the Heartland campaign.

 

Rugged weather in Rodney

March 30, 2017

It bucketed down in Rodney but the Heartland Tour went on. In the carpark at Mangawhai Beach school, field Officer Heather Holmes and Branch President Michelle Dempsey sloshed about while gathering a good number of petition signatures from parents dropping off their children. The usual ‘hug, drop and roll’ was completely disrupted.

Heather Holmes getting signatures in the wet

Heather Holmes getting signatures in the wet

Staff with Michelle Dempsey

Staff with Michelle Dempsey

Staff turned out for a photo before the #Betterfunding campervan headed off to Kaiwaka Primary for a morning tea catch-up with teachers and support staff. After signing the petition themselves the staff undertook to take a couple of large postcards out into their community that they’ll deliver to their local MPs.

Kaiwaka staff with driver Chris Stuart

Kaiwaka staff with driver Chris Stuart

At our next stop the Tomarata school Principal Lynne Duffin and her staff had already covered the office area with #Betterfunding signage and have a plan for building community support.

Tomarata School stands for #Betterfunding

Tomarata School stands for #Betterfunding

In the main street of Wellsford wet shoppers joined in the conversation about funding our schools. These communities get the importance of adequate and equitable funding of children’s education. Then it was on to enthusiastic welcomes at Rodney College and Wellsford Primary where even the bin monitors proclaimed the Operations Grant freeze complete rubbish. A great result in trying weather!

Talking to the locals in Wellsford

Talking to the locals in Wellsford

Students at Rodney College with the #Betterfunding battle bus.

Students at Rodney College with the #Betterfunding battle bus.

The freeze is rubbish!

The freeze is rubbish!

Northland tour continues

March 27, 2017
Whau Valley kids busting out a tune for the visitors.

Whau Valley kids busting out a tune for the visitors.

Plenty of media coverage of the Better Funding Better Learning campaign in the Far North.  The Northern Advocate newspaper here caught up with the van at Hora Hora School in Whangarei where staff and principal are strong advocates on behalf of their pupils.
The Northland tour continues this week through Te Taitokerau, visiting Whangarei schools then Dargaville, Northern Wairoa and Rodney district  before arriving in Auckland.

Kamo kids

Kamo kids

Support staff want change!

March 23, 2017

There is a high level of frustration among support staff in Northland – with eight paid union meetings to date telling the same story.

“I believe this is important,” says Leanne Isaac, Pukepoto School support staff member,  “because at our school we have lost teacher aides due to not enough hours or days also due to lack of funding. I have also as admin lost a day which is a financial burden so I also have to make ends meet on what I receive or find another job to make up for for the day I have lost.”

There was also a lot of energy at the Northland meetings, lots of postcards to MPs signed and signatures added to the national petition. The issues are not going to go away as support staff committed to getting their local MPs to walk in their shoes for a day and see what the job’s like.

The Heartland campaign arrives at Pukepoto School in rural Northland.

The Heartland campaign arrives at Pukepoto School in rural Northland.

Support staff standing strong

March 22, 2017
Sixty eight support staff – that’s a great turnout at Otumoetai College, reported here by the SunLive Media in the Bay of Plenty! This issue is not going away. Support staff are ready to stand up and be counted.
“The main focus for us is a two percent pay rise. Many teacher aides are paid the bare minimum, and we only get paid 40 weeks of the year, not 52 – when school isn’t operating, we don’t get paid,” says NZEI support staff representative Barbara Turley.

Otumoetai College support staff turnout for paid union meeting.

Otumoetai College support staff turn out for paid union meeting.

Media following closely

March 21, 2017
NZEI PPTA bus tour of Dunedin...At North East Valley Normal School Pictured from left Lee Phillips co chair Otago Area Council, and teacher Robbie Hopmann

NZEI PPTA bus tour of Dunedin…At North East Valley Normal School
Pictured from left Lee Phillips co chair Otago Area Council, and teacher Robbie Hopmann

Local and national media are paying attention to school support staff paid union meetings.  Most days on the Better Funding Better Learning itinerary, media are  turning out to find out what teachers and support staff are up to.  Here are some more links stories covering the issues:

Heartland tour visits Northland.

March 20, 2017

This week the Better Funding Better Learning campaign travels to Kaitaia, Taipa, Kaikohe, Kerikeri and Whangarei and many small communities between. The big colourful camper van stops at schools and community meeting places to meet and talk about why teachers want an end to what is effectively a funding freeze.  Some of those visits coincide with paid union meetings for school support staff who are bearing the brunt of school budget deficits as their hours are cut and jobs threatened.

Monday March 20:
12.00 PM                   Umawera School
01.00 PM                   Mangamuka School
02.00 PM                   Mission Place Kindergarten
03.00 PM                   Mussel Rock Café, Kaitaia

Tuesday March 21:
08.30 AM                  Kaitaia Intermediate School – principal Sue Arrell
09.30 AM                  Paid union meeting, Kaitaia Intermediate
10.00 AM                  Ahipara School
11.00 AM                   Pukepoto School
12.00 PM                   Kaitaia main street
01.00 PM                   Paid union meeting, Kaitaia Intermediate
02.00 PM                  Doubtless Bay Kindergarten
02.30 PM                   Taipa Area School
06.00 PM                   Paid union meeting, Beachcomber Restaurant, 222 Commerce St, Kaitaia

Wednesday March 22:
08.15 AM                   Kerikeri Primary School
09.30  AM                 Paid union meeting, Kerikeri Primary
10.00 AM                   Lindvart Park, Kaikohe – inter-school hockey tournament
01.00 PM                   Paid union meeting, Kerikeri Primary
05.00 PM                   Paid union meeting, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Kaikohe

Thursday March 23:
08.15 AM                   Opua School
10.00 AM                   Bay of Islands College
11.00 AM                    Kawakawa Primary School
12.00 PM                    Maromaku School
01.00 PM                    Hukerenui School

Friday March 24:
08:00 AM                  Kamo Primary School
10.50 AM                   Whau Valley School
02.30 PM                   Hora Hora Primary School

Saturday March 25:
07.00 AM                   Whangarei Growers Market
12.00 PM                    Whangarei Fritter Festival

Dad and toddler

Last year, thousands of educators from throughout the primary, early childhood and secondary sectors came together with their communities to win the battle against bulk funding in schools. This year, we’re coming together again to fight to restore funding for early childhood and increase funding for schools, so every young New Zealander has the best start in life.
This is the fifth week of the Heartland campaign which has been touring communities big and small through the South Island and is now covering the North Island. Hundreds of people every day are signing a national petition and hundreds of signed postcards are being sent to local MPs at Parliament from their electorate.
The colourful campervan will have visited almost every corner of the country (click to itinerary) from Bluff to the Far North finishing at Parliament at the end of June.

Defrost the freeze – paid union meetings begin

March 18, 2017
Hibiscus Coast paid union meeting.

Hibiscus Coast paid union meeting.

Teacher aides and other support staff are bearing the brunt of the school funding freeze – and it’s the kids they work with who will miss out. Is that fair?

Support staff are currently attending paid union meetings all over the country, and attracting a lot of attention. The Nelson Mail went along to meet support staff who were supported by their principal Helen Taylor-Young and deputy principal Glenda Rapley  at Victory School in Nelson, read here.

The Better Funding Better Learning camper van was there to meet and get signatures for the national petition to end the funding freeze. There was a huge response at Victory School, where parents could really relate to the effect of underfunding on support staff.

The Northern Advocate newspaper in Whangarei reported here that an increase in funding was needed to pay support staff more.  Paid union meets roll out across Northland this week during the Northland leg of the national Heartland Better Funding campaign.

Kaiarahi reo 2

Wahine toa

Wahine toa

Hamilton show of strength at paid union meeting.

Hamilton show of strength at paid union meeting.

Outside the office of Hamilton East MP David Bennett.

Outside the office of Hamilton East MP David Bennett.

Hamilton support staff

Hamilton support staff

Kaiarahi Reo 1