The Education and Training Act intends to provide high-quality, culturally responsive, seamless and comprehensive education for all learners from early learning to tertiary education. The Act executes a series of reforms that are dedicated to strengthen school governance and refocus on what matters most for learners and their safety.
The bill which was opened for public consultation and feedback earlier this year is expected to be in effect before the beginning of 2022.
The proposed changes to the Education and Training Act following the consultation will encourage to induce more active involvement of students, parents, families and whānau.
The major changes proposed in the bill are,
All non-teaching and unregistered stakeholders working in early learning services or schools need to undergo police verification before beginning employment.
More disputes, including certain cases of serious misconduct to be resolved at the lower Complaints Assessment Committee level to Streamline the Teaching Council’s disciplinary regime.
Pastoral care for domestic and international tertiary learners will be introduced.
The changes will facilitate the government to better regulate the framework of the compulsory student service fee and empower the government agencies to utilise 'National Student Numbers' for the efficient administration of funding to support work-based training.
In order to augment the recognition of the quality and impact of PLD, Education Review Office (ERO) will be closely monitoring the schools.
The New Zealand Qualifications Authority will be able to cancel any Private Training Establishment’s registration if it is convicted under the Immigration Act 2009 for allowing a student to study when they are not entitled to.
There were few minor changes made in the act by the cabinet to improve the performances, such as the necessity for the Secretary of Education to review and confirm strategic plans received from school boards. This, however, retains the secretary's ability to order changes where there are concerns about a plan’s quality. Also, it Clearly defining a ‘free kindergarten association’ by listing all free kindergarten associations recognised by the Ministry in a schedule to the Act. Out of Zone enrolments are proposed to remain the same because of the volume of feedback received to support the current system.