Back to school for Wakatipu teachers


Local teachers are taking a futuristic approach to education.

The Wakatipu Kahui Ako, community of learning, has been set up for schools to share ideas.

Arrowtown School principal Chris Bryant says it’s a new way of thinking.

Instead of acting independently, schools will work collaboratively to come up with ways to improve education across the district, with a focus on reading, writing and maths.

Bryant says that is a subtle shift.

Seven primary schools and Wakatipu High School are involved in the initiative.

“It gives us the opportunity to ask the question, ‘is what we are doing in schools preparing children and students for their future in the best possible way?”‘

Sharing teacher experience and expertise will boost education in the region, he says.

It will also help youngsters progress from pre-school to primary school and on to high school.

Ideas will be rolled out in classrooms for six to eight weeks.

Wakatipu High principal Steve Hall says the idea is a system change and will help schools meet Ministry of Education requirements.

“Ultimately, if students come to Wakatipu High School and they are stronger in those areas, that is going to be good for them and us.

“But the bigger benefit is working with all the primary schools.

“All schools working together for the benefit of all students in the Wakatipu Basin.

“That sense of collaboration and working together is a really great thing.”