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 11 November 2021




For a roundup of what has been happening across our regions click below.




Our latest news:









Nau mai ki te pānui tênei ko te Kōrero.


More Covid Information – Contractors And Volunteers/Parents


If you look at the flowchart in the mandatory vaccination pack sent out earlier this week, this will give you details about volunteers and parents in your kindergarten. Here is a form you can give to new (or existing) parents explaining how we love them spending time in kindergartens but we do need this information.


As we explained earlier, each week we will send a list of contractors who have attested that their staff are vaccinated, or who have provided proof of vaccination.  This will be emailed to kindergartens at the same time as the Kōrero.


Profiling Our Senior Teachers


Raewyn McKenna

Raewyn worked in administration in several roles, including in the health sector, before moving to the early childhood sector.


She had always been interested in teaching, and involvement in the ‘virtues’ programme encouraged her into early childhood, as she saw that this is a crucial time for the development of relationships including social and emotional competence.


After teacher training at Victoria University Raewyn moved to Thailand where she taught for several years.  She gained valuable understanding about cultural diversity and responsiveness by working overseas, and experiencing being in the minority.


She worked in several centres in the Wairarapa, including Ko Te Aroha Children’s Centre, where she established a programme that was responsive to parents working with and understanding their children’s learning.  The programme was empowering for parents and many moved on to other study or careers, in nursing and hospitality for example, as well as early childhood teaching.


Raewyn completed a Masters degree with her research based on this programme, in particular, around whakawhanaungatanga.


She moved to Waverley and joined Whānau Manaaki, working at Maxwell and Districts Kindergarten before being involved in establishing Tōtara Puku, the first long day Kindergarten in Whanganui that takes children from 0 – 5 years old.


Raewyn has been a member of the Bahá’i Faith for 42 years and spends time outside Kindergarten involved in community building activities.  She loves living in Whanganui next to the river, and enjoys gardening, walking/running as well as spending time with grandchildren.




Tania Jack

Tania grew up in the Manawatu area, where her father was a shearing contractor. She never expected to go to university, and after leaving school, worked in shearing sheds and as a nanny. After a stint as a nanny in Canada she was nannying in New Zealand when the family she worked for encouraged her into study.


Tania trained as a teacher at Massey University in the 1990s, and worked on placement at what was then Cambridge Street Kindergarten (now Fanau Pasifika).  From there she worked at Taitoko Kindergarten, where a strong parent support programme was operating. Tania enjoyed being part of that, watching parents change and grow as they were offered opportunities. Several parents went on to train as teachers, because of the encouragement.


Tania says coming from a non-academic background herself, where university study was not expected or encouraged, she had empathy and understanding for parents to whom the idea of tertiary education was challenging.


Tania worked as assistant head teacher than senior head teacher at Taitoko before moving into the senior teaching role.


Since becoming a senior teacher, Tania has enjoyed the chance to move around various kindergartens with different communities.  Now she is working with Central Plateau kindergartens and several in the Horowhenua area where she lives.


Tania loves working with teams, both the individuals and the team as a whole, to support them in

She is also interested in supporting teams that have children experiencing trauma, and helping them support and empower their young learners.


Tania has two adult children and she lives on an acre of land in Levin. She enjoys the outdoors, including gardening, camping, tramping and trail bike riding. In the past she has had horses and she would like to again if the opportunity arises.



Senior Teacher Update


Regional Staff Meetings

Please remember to enrol into the Regional Staff Meetings through Tūhonohono.  If you are having problems enrolling please contact Kaz, she will be able to help you.  Due to Covid Level 2 restrictions our venue numbers are fairly tight and we will not be able to have walk ins on the day. 


Some venues have changed, so please also check Tūhonohono to see if there is a change.  


Also its important to remember each venue needs us to scan in, hand sanitize and wear masks when entering and moving around the venue.


We suggest sitting in your teaching teams to support social distancing. You are welcome to wear your mask throughout the meeting.


Parihaka PLD

This two hour workshop will be held in Te Puna, Porirua Association Office, on 15 and 29 November at 3.30pm.  Please remember to enrol on Tūhonohono.  


This PLD is an opportunity to demonstrate our commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi Partnership (Ngā Paerewa) and is supported by our WMK Te Rautakina Strategic Plan and our strategic intention to strengthen our bicultural capacity.


Please check your own Tūhonohono for this course as there has been readings attached to the course.




New Head Teacher Meeting 

This will be held on Wednesday 24 November in Te Puna, Association Office Porirua, from 10.00am to 2.30pm.  Please enrol on Tūhonohono.  The agenda for the day will be issued soon.


PLD Tab in Korero:

Have you seen this tab at the bottom of the Kōrero?



You can click on this tab and you will be taken directly to the PLD calendar to check out what courses are available.  From there you can enrol into a course through Tūhonohono.



ICT Update


If you are still experiencing ICT challenges or feel like you need more support or training around Office365 or MS Teams please make sure to let your Senior Teacher or Tania Braybrook know. We are working to tidy up the last of the cyber attack matters and want to be sure we capture your experiences and needs moving forward.


Office Staff Collective Contract


The collective agreement for Whānau Manaaki office staff who belong to the union has been agreed, after negotiations with NZEI Te Riu Roa.  This is the second time the collective has been negotiated.  One of the key features of this new contract was the living wage for all office staff.


Over fifty people are employed at the Whānau Manaaki office, although some such as Senior Teachers are covered by the Kindergarten Teachers Collective Agreement (KTCA).


Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens is the only association to have such an agreement, and it is possible other associations will follow our lead.  




                       Karen, Allanah (NZEI), Jan, Vaughan (NZEI), Karen, Sammy, Mandy                    


Kindergarten Teachers Support Pay Parity


Last Saturday NZEI Te Riu Roa held a day of action in support of pay parity around the country, as part of its campaign for better pay for early childhood teachers outside of kindergarten.

Newtown Kindergarten teacher Catherine Vaughan attended and spoke at the event on Wellington’s waterfront where socially distanced bubbles from different centres were in attendance.  Entertainer and early childhood teacher Karen O’Leary was part of the entertainment.  


Newtown Kindergarten Head Teacher Erin McFlynn had earlier organised a group of early childhood and kindergarten teachers to get together for pay parity last week. 


Most private and community services will next year receive more funding for paying the first five steps of the Kindergarten Teachers Collective Agreement, however the union says that is not enough and the process needs to happen more quickly to retain teachers and pay them what they are worth.


Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens and our wider collective organisation, Kindergartens Aotearoa, support pay parity delivered through a national collective agreement for all services. 


Newtown Kindergartens and their colleagues from other ECE services.


New Children’s Commissioner            


Raising children out of poverty is one of the priorities of the new children’s commissioner, Judge Frances Eivers-Witana who is from Ngāti Maniapoto and Waikato.

A pōwhiri was held for her at Pipitea marae when she took over earlier this month from Judge Andrew Becroft.  


The Children’s Commissioner role involves speaking out and advocating for New Zealand’s 1.1 million children, independently of the government.


Frances says she has seen through her work in the courts in South Auckland the effects of rising inequality as children from backgrounds of poverty move through the system.


“Many have been kicked out of school at about age 10 or 11. They don't have kai in their cupboard. They have parents who love them, but just aren't coping... you start talking to them, they are just ordinary kids – they just haven’t had a chance.”


Andrew Becroft used his five years in the role to speak about children in poverty and the plight of Māori children.


He says the situation of Māori came as a shock. “I underestimated how much and how many Māori feel marginalised from the system and experience racism regularly.


He says highlights of his term include law changes so most 17-year-old offenders come under the youth justice system not adult courts, the introduction of child poverty legislation and targets, and having benefits linked to wage growth.


Despite that, he said 20 percent of children live in financial hardship and 10 percent suffer chronic intergenerational hardship.


More Support for Families


The government announced extra support for families last weekend, meaning 346,000 families will get an extra $20 a week from Working For Families. It’s estimated that this will lift 6,000 children out of poverty.


However the Child Poverty Actin Group (CPAG) said the increases were not enough, and merely compensated for inflation over the past four years since the last increase.


CPAG says an additional 18,000 children have ended up in poverty since the Covid !9 pandemic began.


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