Waikato University

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

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 Wilf Malcolm Institute for Educational Research (WMIER) and associated Video Lab of The University of Waikato are 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 inTauranga and Hamilton.
Contact: Dr Jayne White  Co-Director WMIER Video Lab


Bruce McLaren Intermediate School

Samoan identity, language and culture class

Bruce McLaren Intermediate School is in Henderson, West Auckland with a very multicultural roll.  Pasefika students make up 50 %, the largest group is Samoan. 

This  project will be a Teacher-as-Inquirer activity that will research the benefit of implementing a new Identity Language and Culture Class specifically for  Samoan students, led by an existing teacher.  This class will be more holistic than just a bilingual class.  This teacher will examine the benefits of having the dedicated ILC Class on site by comparing it to a control group of Samoan-culture mainstreamed students. The enquiry is whether the dedicated ILC class is making a positive impact on learners.  Funding will be used for the teacher’s up-skilling, her release time to measure the mainstream students and to connect with Waimahia (formerly Weymouth) and Kowhai Intermediates to investigate other existing practice and to understand what Bruce McClaren will need to do differently for their community of students.

Contact: Liz Wood Principal

Havelock North Primary School

Engaging in learning and raising achievement  
of Māori boys 

Havelock Nth Primary has 552 students -58 (10%) Māori, with a cohort of Māori boys who are under achieving.
The project is linking with Havelock North Intermediate and the work Conrad Waitoa (Inspire in Education)  is doing with a similar group (funded by CET), with encouraging results.  The project is to engage with 6 boys and their whanau to build their self-esteem and advise staff on successful strategies to impact on all Māori learners.
This work will generate important data and professional development to share with the other 6 schools in the Community of Learning in the Havelock North area.
Contact:  Nick Reed Principal

Storytime Foundation

Books for Babies in South Auckland

Research shows that a strong bond between a caregiver and child during the first 1000 days significantly improves outcomes in life for the child and the wider family. It also has positive effects on literacy. A caregiver taking time to read to their child—especially as a baby—is a key driver of early attachment.
Storytime Foundation is the only agency delivering books and information, free, into New Zealand’s most deprived homes through Well Child providers, to enhance early attachment, build cohesive families and improve social outcomes.
The current grant is to deliver Books for Babies to 1300 high -need families in Manukau. South Auckland.

Contact: Tony Culliney CEO

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

Silverstream South School

Effective transition to primary school    

Silverstream South School is in Mosgiel on the southern boundary of Dunedin,  with  282 students, mainly low-income- 66% European, 25% Māori, 3% Pasifika, 3% Asian. In 2018 there were 63 new entrants from 10 early Learning Centres  and there will be  6-10 four year olds in each ELC, per term.

The project sets up a collaborative model between family/whanau, ELCs and Silverstream South School, to achieve a transition to school that is more supportive, better prepared, child- centred, and will reduce anxiety and disruptive behaviour; with a drop in RTLB referrals and disruptive behaviour in older children as they progress through the school.  The project will explore:

  • The barriers to transition
  • Early intervention for children with special needs
  • Play- based learning, learner agency and wrap around care
  • Resources that support whanau and children
  • Programmes the school can support, like digital learning, kapahaka, science, music or arts 

Contact: Greg Hurley Principal

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


Manurewa Community of Learning

AREA: Attendance, retention, engagement and achievement

The Manurewa Community of Learning (“CoL”), based in South Auckland, is the only CoL from ECE through to tertiary.
This CoL has identified the transitions (ECE to Year 1, Year 3 to 4, Year 6 to 7, and Year 8 to 9) as the most critical area of need in the Manurewa CoL, a situation compounded by a high degree of transience in the community. Ongoing National Standards data since 2011 identifies the transitions are the most critical from Year 6-7 and Year 8-9 as these children are at their most vulnerable developmental stage and they have to make two transitions in quick succession. Attendance, retention, engagement and performance rates decline during the transitions.

CET is supporting a 4-year project focusing on Years 6-9.  After  4 years’  the first cohort will transition to high school with foundational support and the formation of good behaviours.

The educators within the CoL will address the specific pedagogical and assessment elements, but their ability to positively influence students and whanua/families is greatly restricted outside school. The programme includes the engagement of a fulltime educator from within the community to serve as a community liaison with and between whanau and school personnel. This position is called “Arataki (“Pathway Guardian”) Coordinator”.

Contact: Iain Taylor Principal


Havelock Intermediate School

Inspire in Education programme

Havelock North Intermediate has six contributing schools and is a part of a CoL/ Kahui Ako.
The school is exploring the reasons for lower achievement amongst Māori boys. CET is funding a programme, run by Inspire in Education that mentors six students at a time, forming a bond between them, the mentor, the school, the whanau and community. The boys explore their backgrounds, complete pepeha, meet local community members, discuss issues and problems and set learning and behavioural goals - such as greater participation in school or community activities, specific goals around maths achievement. Wellbeing is at the centre of the programme: health, fitness, kindness to self and others, self-management, participations, restorative practice.

Contact: Julia Beaumont, Principal


Auckland University

Professor Rubie- Davies- HERO High Expectations Remarkable Outcomes project

Professor Christine Rubie-Davies’ previous research identified that teachers who had high expectations for all their students, had marked positive effects on their students’ learning and social-psychological outcomes. That led to investigating the practices and beliefs of high expectation teachers to identify how they structured their classrooms and student learning in ways that resulted in such large gains for their students. 

The High Expectations Remarkable Outcomes Project (formerly the Teacher Expectation and Equity Project) is testing the model that when teachers in regular classrooms are trained in the practices of high expectation teachers, their students make large academic and social-psychological gains as compared to students with a control group of teachers.

The CET grant is for the first year of the HERO Project, for collection of baseline data and to employ seven second-year BEd (Tchg) pre-service teachers to work in each of the seven classes.

Contact: Professor Christine Rubie-Davies