Nau mai ki tenei wiki Kōrero.
It has been great to host the Board in our offices today as they meet for their normal monthly meeting. We are lucky to have a group of dedicated and passionate people overseeing the fantastic mahi we all do.
Ma whero ma pango ka oti ai te mahi
With red and black the work will be complete
Lots Happening This Term
At the regional meetings last year, we talked about changes that would be occurring this term, with the introduction of new stuff that is designed to make things easier for you and our other HWM staff in the long term.
As I said at the regional meetings, we are doing our best to ensure that the rollout of this new “stuff” causes minimal disruption to you. Having said that, we do know that there will be a level of disruption as we adjust to new things and to change.
We also acknowledge that there is a lot happening in the teaching and learning space, with the launch of the updated Te Manawa, and the introduction of the Professional Learning Cycle. Therefore, we thank you for your patience to date, and for your patience and cooperation in the future. :-)
Over the coming weeks, we will continue to provide information via the Kōrero to help you to manage and adjust to these changes. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or suggestions on how to better support this process of change. At this stage, contact Karen Skett if you have questions about Staff Sync, and Sharon Coulton if you have questions about the credit card training (if you have technical questions about the credit cards, contact Fiona.Bray@wmkindergartens.org.nz or email@example.com).
Some of the changes occurring are:
- Jobadder - our new online recruitment system: this is up and running for the HR team in the office. We may be able to use it in the future to make communication easier for Head Teachers during appointment process – we’ll let you know if and when this happens;
- All kindergartens having computers with Windows 10 (rather than older programmes like Windows 7): this has been completed, but we will include information and tips on how to adjust to the new programme (if you haven’t already sussed it out);
- StaffSync – our system to link leave and relievers etc with payroll: kindergarten teams would have received an email last Thursday outlining in detail when the training is going to occur, which will be starting in mid-March.There is more information about this below;
- Fraedom Credit Cards - replacing cheques and the petty cash system: again you were alerted to this in last week’s Kōrero and Upper Hutt and Wairarapa Head Teachers were sent emails on Tuesday about when and where their training is to occur over the coming weeks. The remaining Head Teachers will have their training beginning late March, and details of where and when will be sent to you over the coming week or so;
- Tūhonohono - a new platform to replace HR.Net: this is planned to “go live” in mid-March.
Again, thanks for your patience and cooperation with all of this. It may seem a lot all at once, but many of the systems and processes are interlinked and so it’s better to bring it all onboard at once, so everything is in place, and then we can make adjustments and “iron out” any issues during Term Two.
Love you guys.
Senior Teacher Update
Kia ora koutou katoa,
The Senior Teacher team are continuing our work on the key projects below, please read through all of the information, and contact your ST or Sharon Coulton if you have any additional queries, questions or suggestions!
Kindergarten Year Planners for 2021
Each year we develop a planner that teams use to schedule key aspects of their mahi so that this is spread across the year. An updated year planner for this year is now available on Storypark as a template in your kindergarten’s planning templates. You can also use a Word version if you prefer and these are available here.
Induction and Mentoring Programme 2021
A very warm welcome to you if you have just joined He Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens as a newly certificated teacher (with a Tōmua or Provisional Practising Certificate) or if you are a new mentor. We suggest you make time to watch our Introduction to the WMK Induction and Mentoring programme, which is available here in the first cell under “Kits and Resources’. You can also download a copy of our WMK Induction and Mentoring kit from there too.
If you would like to attend a ZOOM question and answer session on 25 February at 3.30 after watching this webinar, please email Lynette at firstname.lastname@example.org for zoom invitation, this will be an important opportunity to clarify the questions you have as a new teacher or mentor, prior to our first seminar.
Induction and Mentoring Seminar 6 March
We are looking forward to catching up with all PCT’s and Mentors at our first seminar for 2021 – remember attendance at our seminars is an important requirement of your Induction and Mentoring programme.
We are making some changes to the way we hold our seminars this year. As we have over thirty teachers who hold a Tōmua or Provisional Practising certificate and their mentors engaging in our Induction and Mentoring Programme, we are running our seminars in clusters in your region so that we meet the group size requirements for HWM PLD.
We are finalising venues for regional clusters, and will let you all know where your closest cluster will be held. The seminars will be from 9.00am – 1.00pm with a Senior Teacher at each venue to facilitate discussion. We will share more details over the next few weeks. Please add 6 March to your calendar and talk with your Senior Teacher if you have any questions, or contact Lynette.
Professional Growth Cycle
The Teaching Council are implementing The Professional Growth Cycle In February 2021 (alongside the implementation of the Annual Certification Cycle).
We have been working on developing a HWM Professional Growth Cycle with a group of teachers, and this mahi is in its final stages now, we will share the HWM PGC with you when its finalised.
In the meantime, you need to continue to develop an Appraisal Goal, as per our policy, but you are not required to gather evidence or keep an appraisal folder. Instead, undertake kōrero around your goal and keep records of this kōrero - focus on professional growth, not on collecting evidence!
The Teaching Council are also holding more live zoom webinars in the coming weeks as well as giving access to recorded webinars, you can access both here.
Te Manawa Review
The Senior Teaching team are in the final stage of the review of Te Manawa, and we will share more information about this going forward - again watch this space!
In the Kōrero last week we let you know about the developments with StaffSync and that you need to attend training.
Some of you have asked to attend different sessions. As we can only have a certain number of people in each group, it’s not very easy to just change – we have to swap with someone else. We will look at all these requests early next week and come back to you. We will only look to change the schedule if your other ‘things’ absolutely can’t be rearranged.
We will resend the schedule next week, including confirmed venues where we can.
These training sessions are ‘Meeting Outside Kindergarten’.
If you have any questions in the meantime, contact Karen Skett.
An amendment has been made to the "6-month grace period" put in place by the First Aid governing body post Covid.
The 6th month grace period is now technically only available to people who, because of Covid, have gone beyond their First Aid expiry date and the 3-month grace period.
This means that for operational purposes, we are back to the "3-month grace period"; and anything over that will have to be negotiated with the First Aid training governing body. (We have managed this successfully with a couple of people already).
The preference is for people to renew within their certificate period, but definitely as soon as possible within the 3-month grace period offered.
Food Policy Changes
Thanks to all kindergartens for adapting to the new food licensing criteria, and for providing feedback about the new food policy to the Whānau Manaaki office.
In response to your suggestions and questions the policy is being amended slightly and we are developing some Frequently Asked Questions which will be available next week.
The Ministry of Education says a new resource is being developed for families about the changes.
"Please Help Me And Our People, Please Save Our Country.”
Whānau Manaaki’s Burmese home-based educators are calling on New Zealanders to support them in their fight against the military coup in Myanmar, which overthrew the democratically elected government.
The educators, known as TONIs, were among hundreds who gathered at parliament on Monday to protest against the coup. There are around 3,000 people from Myanmar living in New Zealand, and many of them were at parliament, travelling from as far away as Auckland and Christchurch.
Most people from Myanmar in New Zealand are refugees fleeing violence and oppression and they are worried for their families at home as well as for the future of their country.
Sandar Kay who works for Etu Ao in Porirua says she was shocked to hear of the coup. “I cannot sleep well. I always think about my family in Myanmar” she says. The military has cut off the Internet which means people here cannot contact their families, adding to their distress.
Like most refugees, Sandar sends money home regularly to her family but now she cannot do that.
“The Western Union bank is blocking money transfers. I am so disappointed and crying. My heart is broken when I cannot support them, I know they need the money at this time.
“Please help me and our people. Please save our country. “
Myat Aye who also works for Etu Ao says she is worried about her family, and about being unable to support them for health and expenses. “My father has a heart problem and he needs to take medicine regularly. I support my parents with money for healthcare. It’s a hard time for me.”
Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens has condemned the coup and offered support to the educators.
All the TONI educators have appreciated the support from Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens.
The government has also come out strongly against the coup, suspending relationships with the military government and cutting off any aid that goes to the military. The government also plans to ban military personnel from travel here.
Teachers should talk to Burmese families in their kindergarten communities, explaining that our Association supports democracy and has opposed the military coup.
If there are further rallies or any other action that teachers can take, we will let you know.
Sandar and Jumabi and Myat attend the protest at Parliament.
Last week, Kathryn Anderson - one of teachers at Pikopiko, was nominated as an ECE Voice Hero! Mel Sutton, the Deputy Principal of Clyde Quay School nominated Kathryn. The two have come to know each other well through their work on the Clyde Quay School Board as well as the kindergarten being on the school grounds.
Here is what Kathryn received from NZEI:
Kia ora Kathryn Anderson,
Congratulations, Mel Sutton has nominated you as an ECE Voice hero - hautipua kōhungahunga!
Over the past few weeks, people across Aotearoa have been nominating inspiring and heroic individuals and teams working in ECE to recognise and celebrate our early childhood kaiako and kaimahi who have gone above and beyond in the last year to meet the needs of their tamariki, whānau and communities.
Click here to find out more about the ECE Voice Heros.
Here's why Mel has nominated you as a hero:
Kathryn goes above and beyond to connect with the community which is particularly challenging with the incredibly diverse nature of the whanau - most have English as an additional language, or do not speak English at all. Several students have additional needs and her patience and love of learning alongside them is inspiring.
During lockdown her commitment to ensure that everyone was doing okay was outstanding.
Kathryn is pivotal in connecting Pikopiko Kindergarten with the local school, Clyde Quay School. She is actively involved in joint projects and fully supports events which benefit our school as well as the kindy.
Kathryn's positivity is unwavering even in extraordinary circumstances, and despite events in her personal life which creates extra challenges.
The quality of the relationships that she builds with the tamariki is clearly evident by the way our school students often pop back to visit, and share memories of being at kindy with her.
This year the physical space the kindy could use was reduced due to extended renovations on our shared site. Kathryn comes up with interesting ways to engage students, even under these extra pressures. Her love of the environment is integral.
Kathryn is simply phenomenal!.
The three words they used to describe you were:
phenomenal, kind, connecting
They also shared this memory that captures why they nominated you:
Each year at our school we have "Book Week" and part of this is teachers going into other classrooms to read to different children. Kathryn joins in, coming down to school to read to the kids. Our students just love having her in, sharing the things they do now that they are at school, and reminiscing on the good times at kindy with her.
How fantastic Kathryn, well done! And we love the crazy photo that was sent in!
Kathryn and Mel.
Countdown Grants For Kindergartens
Countdown is offering “Growing for Good” grants to inspire children to learn about and care for the environment.
Last year's projects saw Pukerua Bay School revitalise their skink garden, Huia Range School and Puaka Bush School build greenhouses, Greenwood Kindergarten install a watering system for their vegetable patch, a number of schools build chicken coops and many others plant fruit trees and vegetables.
Growing for Good grants are open for all New Zealand early childhood centres, primary and intermediate schools to apply for between 1 February and 21 March 2021.
To apply or to find out more information click here.
New Pacific Language Books
Five new Pacific language e-books with embedded audio files have been added to the PELP resources for early learning.
PELP resources support language and literacy in Gagana Sāmoa, Te Gagana Tokelau, Lea Faka-Tonga, te reo Māori Kūki 'Airani, and Vagahau Niu.
The e-books are available on Te Whāriki Online. You can find them by clicking here.
Young Children Miss Out On Healthy Food
About half the families in a study of 6000 children struggled to afford healthy food during the first year of life of their babies. About half of mothers with babies aged nine months were forced to buy cheaper food to pay for other things, with many using food grants or food banks.
Researchers from the University of Auckland and the University of Otago used information from the longitudinal study in their examination of food hardship in preschool years.
The study found 40 percent of Pasifika children and 35 percent of Māori children had used food banks or special needs grants from the government while their child were under four and a half.
You can read the full report, Food Hardship and Early Childhood Nutrition, here.
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