Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako

Education is about our tamariki. It touches every person, every whānau, and every community in New Zealand. Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako are a foundation for their journey.

What is a Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako?

A Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako is focused on a child’s individual learning progress and achievement, from early learning through to tertiary and beyond. 

A group of educators work in partnership with parents, whānau, communities, iwi and employers to support every child’s learning journey with dedicated education resources to support each community.

It's an exciting time and a great opportunity for classroom teachers like us and for our tamariki, which is what it's all about

- Susan Swann-Eason, within school teacher, Rotorua Central Community of Learning

How does it work?

A Community of Learning shares best teaching and learning practice and experience across its community of education providers, sets shared goals within the community to achieve in the next 2-3 years (called achievement challenges) and collectively works within the community to achieve those challenges.

Watch our video about how some of New Zealand’s educators are building positive relationships with parents, whānau and iwi so that our tamariki benefit:

How will being part of a Community of Learning benefit my child or whānau?

  • your child’s individual learning needs will be better supported because their teachers will have greater access to information about your child’s progress, as they move from early learning services, to school or kura, secondary and tertiary education, and into employment.
  • your child’s teachers can share your child’s learning progress and achievement with each other. Knowing what your child needs, they will be better able to assist them when they need it, at the right time, in the right subjects, and in the right place.
  • your child will benefit from innovative and creative teaching and learning practice. Communities of Learning let our best teachers share their expertise and experience with each other. This will help lift the overall quality of teaching in our early learning services and schools.
  • schools will have more opportunities to partner with tertiary providers and employers to support your child’s career and employment opportunities. 

Our ultimate goal is that children are happy, that they are confident and that they know who they are and what they have to contribute.

- Jocelyn Te Maipi-Mason, Early Childhood Centre Manager, Whakatāne Community of Learning

How do I find out if my child is part of a Community of Learning?

Find a Community of Learning online or ask your child’s teacher.

How do I get involved in my child’s Community of Learning?

Parents and whānau are key influencers and partners in their child’s learning journey. So, getting involved in your Community of Learning is important.

  • talk to your school or early learning service about how you could get involved and what you, and other parents, could do to help form a Community of Learning
  • go along to a meeting at your local school or Community of Learning - find out what’s going on and have your say
  • if you’re on your Parent Teachers Association (PTA), talk to other parents about what you can do to engage more with your Community of Learning. Brainstorm ideas with them
  • talk to your Board of Trustees about Communities of Learning and getting involved. The board is there to represent what you want for your child.

Can I get involved in developing achievement challenges for my child in a Community of Learning?

Yes. Communities of Learning involve parents, along with students, teachers and the wider community, in the setting of their achievement challenges. It is important that you and your whānau are involved because these challenges are designed to help lift your child’s educational achievement.

Steps to take:

  • find out if your Community of Learning has set its achievement challenges. If it has, ask how you can get involved in helping to meet its achievement challenges, or how you can help adjust them when they are reviewed
  • if your Community of Learning is in the process of setting its achievement challenges, or has yet to set them, then ask how you can be involved in helping to set them.

Read some examples of Achievement Challenges developed by different Communities of Learning and endorsed by the Minister of Education.

Share this story

Last reviewed: Has this been useful? Tell us what you think.