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Education is a great leveller in society. National wants every child to have the opportunity to succeed no matter who they are or where they have come from.

National’s Education Discussion Document outlines many proposals we want your feedback, and reconfirms our commitments.

In Early Childhood Education (ECE) we continue to focus on those critical first 1000 days for a child, on social investment and on the quality of education and care our children receive in those foundation years.

We’re proposing spot checks on ECE services to ensure they are meeting the required standards. If they are breaking the rules, we’re proposing that these services be put on notice and parents informed. If problems aren’t fixed quickly, services will risk losing their license to operate.

National will also support teachers so they can spend more time actually teaching.

Too often our teachers are burdened with too much bureaucracy. Teachers should be focussing on face-to-face time with our children.

Last year Simon Bridges announced a National would reduce class sizes in primary. We are committed to this policy and have now released draft student-teacher ratios.

More time with a teacher means more opportunities for children to ask questions and get answers, and for teachers to focus on areas where a child may be struggling.

Smaller class sizes means more teachers. National is proposing a number of ways, including financial incentives, to attract more people to the profession, or to get people to return to teaching.

We’re also considering changes to initial teacher training, which include strengthening practicum requirements, accredited schools involved in teacher training and more support for teachers who mentor beginning teachers.

A quality education comes from our teachers, but it also comes from strengthening the Curriculum. We want local curriculum to thrive and teachers to have world class curriculum resources. Children must leave school with firm foundations in core areas of reading, writing and maths.

It’s also important parents know how their children are progressing. National will ensure we continue to improve school reporting systems, including better access to online reporting. As parents you deserve to know what your child is doing and what areas they need to improve on to succeed.

National is also proposing some changes at the tertiary level. First year Fees Free has been an expensive failure. Not only has it not increased participation, but there are fewer learners now than before. It’s been a waste of hard earned taxpayer money

We also oppose the Government’s Reform of Vocational Education. National will return polytechnic assets and decision making back to regional polytechnics. We know the regions and local industry are best placed to teach their students.

Enter into the contest of ideas with your feedback at https://www.national.org.nz/education

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