Sitting in a room with education ministers, teacher union
representatives, and education leaders from 26 countries has
left Big Rock School principal David Grant with a different
perception of New Zealand's education system.
Mr Grant was one of a small group of New Zealand principals
invited by the Ministry of Education to officially observe
the International Summit on the Teaching Profession, in
Wellington last month.
The summit was a global conversation centred around the theme
''Excellence, Equity and Inclusiveness - high-quality
teaching for all''.
Mr Grant said each nation's representative shared initiatives
which aimed to strengthen the profession and raise pupil
achievement, but the main issue discussed was working out how
to make education equitable.
''Education needs to be for everybody - it shouldn't be for
those who have got the most money,'' Mr Grant said.
''The summit was about addressing the issue, sharing ideas
that work, ideas that don't work, so that countries don't
follow failed models.''
Mr Grant said he found the summit beneficial, and would
discuss what he had learned with staff.
''One thing the summit gave me was a clearer understanding of
why the Government is taking the education direction that we
are - with things like national standards and the new expert
The New Zealand delegation, made up of Education Minister
Hekia Parata and representatives from the Secondary
Principals' Association of New Zealand, the New Zealand
Educational Institute and the Post Primary Teachers'
Association, presented two main plans for action that came
from the summit.
Ms Parata said the summit was an opportunity to work with
other successful education systems from around the world, and
agree on actions New Zealand can take to improve its