New grants from March 2019 funding round

The following projects received funding in the March funding round

COMET Auckland Talking Matters Koreotia Mai

CET has made a 5 year contribution to this project:

  Talking Matters has been piloted in 3 small-scale pilot projects (Māngere-Ōtāhuhu, Tāmaki and Puketāpapa), identifying what models work and inspire families to talk and can be brought to scale. The project will: that is a key part of the Talking Matters process, as well as internal systems, tracking LENA[1] data on words and interactive turns at home, reading minutes and TV use

Use ‘what works’ evidence to underpin capacity building and resource development

Track the medium-term impact of early oral language on a sample of children in TM action communities. The tracking study research will need to run for at least 4 years (to allow children who are now coming up three to have their language assessed in their first year of school). We have identified some possible measures and approaches (e.g. using MacArthur Bates Communicative Development Inventories) but the study will need further scoping in 2019.

COMET thought that the tracking study would be of particular interest to Cognition Education Trust.

Three phases to 2023

1.  Go deeper and learn (2018-2019): Deepen involvement in our action communities; develop and test model; create strategies for Maori and Pasifka-led initiatives; and future matched funding, scope and start the tracking study; establish strategic partnerships with organisations that can take up TM messages.

2. Expand reach (2020-2021): expand and/or replicate in First action communities; test models of action with at least one organisation/programme of national significance and iwi; support activation in other communities; identify key policy pivot points for early language (e.g. ECE initial teacher education and PLD, child wellbeing framework, foster parenting, access to bilingual reading material, universal public health messages about early language); track impact on children’s language development and whānau; hold Summit 2020. 

3. Share and influence (2022-2023): Replicate programmes; establish partnership and business models that can sustain the work; complete tracking study and publish findings; hold TM Summit 2022; build a advocacy platform for service practice and policy reform; collaborate on technology solutions and broad distribution of public health messages about early language.

[1] Language Environment Analysis tool

Havelock North Kahui Ako Inspire in Education

Havelock North  Kahui Ako: Havelock North Intermediate School, Te Mata Primary School, Lucknow Primary School, Havelock North Primary School have come together to  addresses inequality in learning outcomes between Maori boys and NZ European boys through the Inspire in Education mentoring model based on a kaupapa Māori approach.

The project will involve up to 50 Maori boys, 10 from Years 4-6 in each of the three primary schools and 20 students from the intermediate school.  The key objectives of the programme are:

To support the delivery of Maori language, culture and identity among communities of learning.

To provide schools with evidence based advice to lift Maori achievement

To assist with a support system for students at risk

To foster successful partnerships with parents, whānau, hap, iwi, communities and business.

The intervention provides opportunities for the mentor to link with teachers and principals in schools to advocate for students. By this, students learning anxieties, strengths, challenges, and background etc. may be communicated giving educators insight and opportunity to change practice as required. The mentor is also able to convey to teachers culturally responsive strategies to better meet the needs of this group of students

Achievement data will be collected and collated start of Term 2 and early Term 4.

Wellbeing survey in Term 2

Whanau voice at intervals outlined above

Attendance data at intervals outlined above

Student voice collected in a formative way


Term 1: Intermediate commences programme to ensure transition links of previous years are upheld, and the elements of whakawhanaungatanga are explored 

Term 2-4 Primary Schools commence programmes following the process outlined above.

Intermediate: programme continues exploring elements of Manaakitanga, Whenuatanga, Wananga and Kaitiakitanga. Role models as guest speakers Maori achieving as Maori)

Transition links made between primary school and intermediate, and where appropriate between intermediate and high school.

Storytime Foundation 1000 Days” From thought to action

CET is contributing to the first year of this 3 year project which builds on the pilot CET helped fund to grow the service base and develop the infrastructure to support more disadvantaged families. Up to 5000 families in South Auckland could benefit over 3 years.  Working collaboratively with Talking Matters, Plunket, Family Start, midwives, Ministry of Education, Corrections and others and commencing 1 July 2019 a programme to be rolled out over three years.

  •  Contract a project manager to oversee the project
  • Engage Point Research as eva
  •  Identify all existing and potential agencies that can effectively work collaboratively with SFT
  •  Work with video creator to complete an animated production to describe the services, their purpose and the desired outco
  • Meet with each agency to describe the programme, the resources, the processes and the commitment required of both parties
  •  Contract a part-time resources coordinator to ensure that all resources are prepared in anticipation of delivery to provider agency
  •  Prepare enrolment and follow up questionnaire forms in cooperation with Point Research
  • Prepare activity packs for families including placemats, activities and instructions and books
  •  Commence the rollout
  • Deliver the programme
  • Independent evaluation including literature review, questionnaire, focus group and participant interviews gathering baseline data at enrolment

Cholmondeley Children’s Centre Building mindfulness capabilities

The Christchurch Centre works with many children who have been affected by trauma and struggle to regulate their emotions and cope with daily stressors, impacting their ability to learn.  

Project: The Centre considers Mindfulness an evidenced based solutions to support a practice wide approach to this issue. This intervention will have a twofold effect. With all the core staff who work with children being trained in mindfulness practices with children, this will enhance staff wellbeing as to learn to do this with children, the staff must first practice it themselves. Then the children’s learning will be impacted by allowing them to be coached, taught and supported to use the techniques learned to support better engagement in education.


Training session to be held on-site at Centre before 30 June 2019

Staff to complete eight week online training (including lesson plans and audios)

Teaching staff to develop Kura mindfulness lesson plans

Mindfulness sessions to be introduced into Kura and wider daily routines e.g. bedtimes etc. update documents, for example consistency guidelines 

Core team who attended mindfulness training will upskill remaining and new staff members via practice team meetings 

Training session for regular internal Personal Development session to continue to focus on and upskill from the learning. Currently Cholmondeley holds two PD weeks each year

Implement over two terms mindfulness access success and as needed adapt to ensure that mindfulness is embedded in our practice 

TeachFirst NZ Teacher mentor support

This programme aims to establish a world-class programme for all mentors working with TFNZ participants, with the potential to make available for other programmes, and leave a legacy of supporting new teachers in the schools that TFNZ partner with. 

Deliverables in 2019 academic year:

  • Review and redesign current mentor programme and handbook with updated resources, increased guidance on effective mentoring, and benchmark it with other great models
  • Design an evaluation, with support from CET, to investigate the effectiveness of  current work with mentors, and learn from the experience of the mentors in 2019 about how TFNZ can improve the programme, hopefully in partnership with some of TFNZ schools
  • Develop an online sharing platform for mentors to access information about their participants and additional resources
  • Dedicate a member of the Teach First NZ staff to working with the mentors and the programme
  • Run more in-person, cluster and online meetings with mentors through the year

Initially the learnings from this project will be used by Teach First NZ to inform own programme development, and with tertiary partner to influence the development of flagship qualification. 

Project report which we will make publicly available and shareable via our website. 

In 2020 academic year re-launching the programme with mentors for the year. 

Stewart Germann Grant 2019-Whangaehu School

This year the Stewart Germann grant was awarded to Whangaehu School a rural full primary school  near Whanganui with 37 students from age 5 to 13.

Project Outdoor education to build capacities through whole school camp with Ka Hikitia approach, specifically an outdoor education his camp with focus on building capabilities of tamariki, raising engagement in their learning and expectations of themselves.

  The camp will allow Maori to learn as Maori and also several ADHD students will benefit from learning through movement. The camp would build teacher capacity as teachers learn new skills to bring back to the classroom; along with new relationships, better trust and greater knowledge of the child and family so that curriculum/lessons can fully reflect the needs, dreams and aspirations of our students... 

Continuing grants

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology

Dr Jayne White -    Nature and impacts of different kinds of transitions on young children as they move through early learning to school

Dr White has moved to RMIT, and hosting of this project is now at that institution.  The beneficiaries of the CET-funded component remain NZ children.The project is part of the Pedagogies of Educational Transitions (POET) project investigating children’s early learning transitions across the world: in Brazil, Finland, Scotland, Samoa, Australia and New Zealand.  The project includes conducting a video-informed study that takes account of the emotional and social experiences of very young children in their earliest encounters in formal educational settings outside of their home.  The project involves early childhood education services in a range of settings in Tauranga and Hamilton.
Contact: Dr Jayne White

Whanganui Learning Centre

Improving oral language skills

The Whanganui Learning Centre Trust has its roots in the Adult Reading and Learning Assistance (ARLA) movement that grew from a community need 40 years ago. WLCT has a history of successfully delivering Adult and Community Education, literacy, numeracy and technology programmes throughout the Whanganui community. It is a research-based organisation that is working collaboratively with a range of local and national providers to enhance the foundational skills and well-being of adults and their whanau—especially Māori  and Pasifika with low-or-no skills.

The CET grant is to improve oral language skills through better communication between hard-to-engage parents, their teachers and children. Activities include whanau groups joining with the Whanganui Regional Museum to run an interactive journey on “waka journeys and stories”. 

Contact: Gail Harrison  Manager

Student Engagement Plan-Nga Tama Toa support

CET is continuing to fund this promising programme.

Due to the resignation of the dedicated teacher for the Nga Tama Toa class  (to take up a Principal position), the school has had to transition to an in-class support model. 

There are currently 9 male students being supported in classrooms

A student has enrolled for term 2 who will also require significant support

One student has transitioned into the Rumaki class (teaching / instruction is delivered in te Reo Maori) with the remaining 8 students being distributed in to two senior classrooms

10 students require curriculum adaptation for learning

4 students require support in developing their prosocial skills

9 students require support in developing their confidence

1 student requires toileting support

A full time learning support worker has been employed to work with the target students

Individual learning programmes and targets have been created for all targeted Ngā Tama Toa students.

Contact: Eden Chapman

Paekākāriki School

Get Stuck In programme for disengaged boys

Paekākāriki School is a small village school with 150 children, years 1-8, on the Kāpiti Coast, supporting a diverse socio-economic population.

Get Stuck In takes disengaged boys years 4 - 8 and gives them time outside the classroom, guidance and resources to learn a new craft ( e.g. building, kite making, whakairo (wood carving), to increase their engagement with school in general by boosting their confidence and competencies. They work with a dedicated male teacher aide, with support from classroom teachers.

Alongside the boys’ learning, their teacher aide and teachers will have professional development aimed at informing their own inquiries into teaching priority male students. Working together, they will reflect on the process, and then share their learning of working with this important target student group with the wider teaching community to other schools.
Contact: Julie Bevan