Response to NZEI Te Riu Roa report on offensive behaviour

Statement can be attributed to Katrina Casey, Deputy Secretary, Sector Enablement & Support

We welcome NZEI Te Riu Roa’s report. The offensive behaviour captured in it is unacceptable in any environment. All of us need to ensure that teachers are safe and feel valued and supported.

As part of our own focus on teacher and principal wellbeing; we have partnered with NZEI and members from a number of key national teacher and principal representative bodies, including the Education Council, other unions and the NZSTA to develop an Education Professionals’ Wellbeing Framework. This framework has been endorsed by representatives of these groups and a plan is being developed on how to roll it out across the education sector.

At a school level we know there is also a lot of work being done to tackle challenging behaviour. We provide a range of supports and guidance to help schools with this. These supports range from all of school professional learning development, to individual specialist support for staff. But more can be done in this area.

We are currently expanding our existing behaviour services to reach an additional 1,000 children each year aged 0-8 from 2018/2019. The budget for this initiative is $34.68 million over four years, and an extra 56 specialist staff and service managers will be recruited over the life of the initiative.

Budget 2018 also provided $283.8 million over four years to fund a range of supports and services for students with additional learning needs.

We are reviewing NZEI’s report closely and will consider its recommendations as part of our wider work on teacher and principal wellbeing.

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