Joining a Community of Learning

In this section:

Can my school or service choose whether to join a Community of Learning? 

Yes. It is voluntary. Boards of Trustees choose whether their school or kura will join or form a Community of Learning. Post-secondary providers and early learning services can also choose to join.

How many Communities of Learning have formed?

More than 60% of New Zealand’s schools and around 495,000 children and young people are part of Kāhui Ako (as of February 2017).

What about Māori medium schools?

Māori medium services and schools may form a Māori medium Community of Learning, or work with English medium services and schools.

How does my local hapū and iwi fit into all this?

Productive partnerships between schools, whānau, hapū and iwi help raise Māori educational progress and achievement. When schools see your children as part of their whānau, hapū and iwi, partnerships become more important. Parents and whānau must be involved in conversations about their children and their learning.

If your child’s early learning service, kohanga reo, school or kura is part of a Community of Learning, contact them to ask how they have involved your iwi, or plan to involve your iwi, in your Community of Learning, or in the setting, reviewing, and measuring of progress on its achievement challenges. You can also connect with your hapū or iwi and ask them about your local Community of Learning I Kāhui Ako.

You can find your local iwi on the Te Puni Kōkiri website.

What role does the Board of Trustees have in a Community of Learning?

The Board of Trustees is responsible for employing three new roles which are created within Communities of Learning: the leadership role, the teacher (across community) role and the teacher (within school) role.

There are also Leadership Advisors, Emerging Leaders and Expert Partners, who are mostly from the education profession. Expert Partners assist a Community of Learning to set its achievement challenges, designed to raise your child’s achievement in subjects like mathematics, reading and writing. Then, they help work out what supports and resources a community needs to meet these challenges.

Ask your Board of Trustees who has been assigned these roles as they will be important decision makers within Communities of Learning. Read more about the roles in page 15 of The Community of Learning Guide for Schools and Kura.

If you are a member of the Board of Trustees, the Education Review Office School Trustees Booklet includes questions and information that will guide you in your discussions with school leaders.

How will my child benefit from the new teaching and leadership positions being created in Communities of Learning?

All our research tells us that high quality teaching and great school leadership are the most important in-school factors in lifting your child’s achievement.

The new Community of Learning roles will, over time, give our teachers and school leaders more opportunities to improve teaching practice within and between schools.

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