Education Minister Hekia Parata says her meetings with education experts and leaders in the United States confirmed that New Zealand’s education system is a world-leader in preparing young people for the 21st century.
Ms Parata joined international education experts and leaders, including OECD Secretary-General, Dr Angel Gurria and UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, for discussions at the Asia Society Center for Global Education in New York.
“The Center is focusing on how education systems can build global competencies and global citizenry among students all over the world. New Zealand’s focus on a broad and diverse curriculum that develops competent, confident and connected citizens was of great interest to the Center,” says Ms Parata.
Another highlight was a meeting with Dr Craig Nevill-Manning, a New Zealander known on the world stage as a leading computer science educator and technological innovator. He established Google's first remote software engineering centre in Manhattan, and is now Chief Technology Officer at the company Sidewalk Labs.
“Dr Nevill-Manning’s career is an inspiration to young New Zealanders studying science and technology subjects. He is a shining example of what science and technology students can achieve”.
Dr Nevill-Manning is a former doctoral student of Professor Tim Bell at Canterbury University who has been a key advisor on making digital technology a core part of the New Zealand curriculum.
Ms Parata also met with Teachers Pay Teachers (TPT), an innovative US start-up that provides a platform for teachers to share curriculum resources with each other.
“I was interested to hear that a significant number of New Zealand teachers are participating in TPT, both as users of the resources as well as some designers."
Digital technology is a topic Ms Parata will explore further this week at the Global Education Industry Summit in Israel, a country known for technological innovation.
“We have worked hard in New Zealand to ensure our schools have access to the best digital technologies available. We recognise that our children and young people need to be confident using a broad range of digital technologies. The Summit will be another opportunity to share our experiences, while exploring those of other countries.”