Welcome to our latest update of information and stories you may be interested in...
There is lots to read in this edition, enjoy!
Learning Support Network Meetings
The Learning Support Network Meetings for September, topic Autism, have been confirmed and the details have been updated to the PLD calendar. Please make sure you check the dates, venue etc and enrol through HR.Net.
All staff employed by Whānau Manaaki have to engage in appraisal and that includes Relievers. It is also an essential element of maintaining your Practicing Certificate. We have recently introduced a new appraisal process for Relievers and this is being rolled out this term. There are a series of meetings around the region for Relievers that will unpack the Standards in a practical way and facilitate setting a goal – with an Appraiser – for the coming year. We want all Relievers to attend a meeting – listed below. If it is not possible for you then please contact either Karen Skett or a Senior Teacher to discuss how you will engage in appraisal this term.
Whānau Manaaki Office, Porirua
3pm – 5pm
Upper Hutt Cossie Club
3pm – 5pm
Carterton Courthouse Community Hub
3pm – 5pm
Coastlands, Rimu room, Paraparaumu
3pm – 5pm
Karori Community Centre
3pm – 5pm
ASB Stadium, Kilbirnie
3pm – 5pm
Help Payroll To Help You - Part-Time Teachers And Recording Your Hours Correctly
It’s really important that all teachers and particularly teachers and relievers who work part-time record their hours properly to make it easier to process the pays.
Around 40 per cent of our 700 teachers are now working part-time, and each time there is a variation in hours on weekly returns or staff hour counts, or on leave applications, or on timesheets it has to be followed up, meaning hours of staff time in phone calls to clarify each discrepancy.
We know this is frustrating for you having to answer these queries in the middle of your teaching day, and it can put a lot of pressure on the office team to get the pay sorted by the cut-off at mid-day on Tuesday – with sometimes 350 special entries having to be made each week. So it will help us all if you make sure the teacher reports, timesheets and the leave applications are accurate.
Of course, sometimes we understand things are a bit complicated so if ever you’re not sure how to fill things in don’t hesitate to contact the team at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office.
Thanks for your understanding and co-operation on this one.
Awatea Source Wet Bags
Caroline, head teacher at Awatea, had heard about Spark gifting wet bags to ECE centres. Last Friday Caroline contacted Spark via the Spark website requested some bags and on Monday 60 turned up!
You might want to make contact with Spark, through their website here, and ask for some for your kindergarten.
Kindergarten Administrators’ Pay – What Is Happening?
Kindergarten administrators and other kindergarten support staff may be wondering about their pay following last week’s story about the Ministry of Education support workers (often called ESWs) who work in kindergartens.
This group of workers got a pay rise of around 27 per cent because of an equal pay case taken by their union, NZEI Te Riu Roa. There is a long history to this –a process was set up more than ten years ago to try to cut the gender pay gap. A special unit in the Department of Labour, as it was then, considered cases where women’s work was undervalued. It started with the core public service – those working for government departments. Because support workers were employed by the Ministry of Education (not by Kindergarten Associations) they were the first group. A big research report was done and the government and the Ministry agreed that they were underpaid by about thirty per cent. However before they got the money, the government changed and the National government abolished the whole process.
Last year, aged care workers in resthomes won a big equal pay settlement and this led to a new process, meaning other groups could get pay issues addressed. The Ministry support workers were the first group to use this system, because the research work had already been done.
NZEI is now preparing equal pay cases for other groups, including kindergarten support staff. Some support staff union members were surveyed earlier this year about their pay and conditions and skills and knowledge to gather data. This claim will be pursued but it is not clear how long it will take to get a result. There are several equal pay cases in the pipeline. NZEI will keep members up to date with developments. There may be separate funding available for equal pay settlements.
Kindergarten support staff in Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens are covered by the KASSCA agreement which expires next month. Shortly NZEI Te Riu Roa will ask union members about claims for this agreement. This agreement is likely to be negotiated within the current funding limits – that is without any extra money earmarked for equal pay settlements.
Opportunity To Stress The Need For Quality And Qualified Teachers In ECE
A new strategic plan is being developed for early childhood education, and Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens is feeding into this process, as is NZEI Te Riu Roa.
This plan is important as it will set the plan for early childhood education, and for kindergarten to have a strong future we need to have support for 100 per cent qualified teachers and the funding to go with that, as a bottom line.
NZEI has produced a number of policy papers about different aspects of early childhood education and union members can take part in the discussions or simply vote on the proposals in the paper using the platform, Loomio.
You can choose which ones you are interested in. All the responses need to be in by 31st August.
Here’s the link.
From this link you will get an invitation to participate. Have a go and have your say!
Review Of Home-Based Education
The government is reviewing homebased education, and considering major changes to how it operates, looking at qualifications, size of networks and the role of the visiting teacher or co-ordinator who oversees curriculum delivery and regulations.
There has been concern about the rapid growth of home-based services, sometimes attracted by low start-up costs and government subsidies, and whether there are enough safeguards to ensure quality and good use of government funding.
Whānau Manaaki’s homebased service Etu Ao has been running since 2012 and caters for up to 150 children in the Porirua region. All educators complete a 12-week qualification prior to starting.
One of the proposals could see homebased educators considered employees rather than self-employed, and this could mean they get at least the minimum wage and other coniditions such as sick leave and holiday pay.
Whānau Manaaki welcomes the review and will be making submissions. Teachers, parents and anyone interested is welcome to have a say on the proposals too.
Here’s the link to the discussion document.
Don’t Forget To Invite Your MP To Kindergarten
Here’s Mana MP Kris Faafoi visiting Maraeroa Kindergarten recently. Don’t forget to invite your MP to visit, whatever party they belong to, and also, other list MPs who are in your area. It’s your chance to advocate for our sector and for`100 per cent qualified teachers and funding.
If you host an MP, put it on your facebook page. Whether we like it or not, early childhood education is political and it is our job to advocate for children.
Advocating for children can be an appraisal goal, and talking to politicians can be part of that.
If you need any support for what to say to MPs or how to go about it, or who to invite, contact Jenny, email@example.com
This Week On Facebook
Last week one of the mums from Awatea Kindergarten, who is a teacher at Wellington East School, worked with some of her students and created maternity packs. They arrived with lots of large blue buckets filled with awesome resources that every family needs like nappies, clothes and chocolate.
They fundraised and approached shops for donations. They worked hard so we can give these packs to expectant mothers and fathers.
Our first pack went to an Aunty who is expecting twins and today we gave a pack to Ash our regular Rubbish collecter who has a new baby calle Riley.
Thanks to this resourceful group of students who thought about who they could help and set about making positive change.
At Parsons Ave we noticed a bump had popped out of our balance bike tyre. The wear and tear finally gave way to the inner tube. With holes in the tyre we knew we needed to get another tyre. The essentials of bike care 101. Good thread on tyres and pumped up seamless inner tube. So much interest in the real importance lessons in life - how to fix your tyre!
Dancing Through The Shadows!
How gorgeous is this photo!
Plimmerton Kindergarten sent this photo in of their friend dancing in the recent sunshine exploring shadow and light. Just beautiful!
To Give Away
Cottle Kindergarten have approximately 40 chairs to give away. If you are interested please contact them direct.
Georgina from Shannon Pre-School sent in this really cool idea to up-cycle an entertainment unit. How amazing is this transformation?
One of our head teachers, who shall remain nameless, has sent in one of her goals which she had shared with her team. Feel free to use for your own!
(The best part about presenting this goal to the team was for one minute one of the team actually thought this was a real goal, the look on her face was priceless! :-)
Thank you for taking the time to read Kōrero.
Don't forget to check out some of the stories listed down the side menu. Just click between the stories of use the Kōrero bar to come back to this page.