Column – New Zealand National Party
Welcome to my November Newsletter. I have been busy last month in and out of Parliament. The highlight of course was the All Blacks winning the Rugby World cup! Congratulations ABs you have done us proud!Ngaro’s News: November 2015
National List MP based in Te Atatu
Welcome to my November Newsletter. I have been busy last month in and out of Parliament. The highlight of course was the All Blacks winning the Rugby World cup! Congratulations ABs – you have done us proud!
This has been a busy time for parents and our kids who have sat NCEA exams, and students completing their tertiary finals and assignments. Best wishes for some good results!
Education has always been a key priority for this government
National is working hard to ensure all our kids have the opportunity to engage in learning that best meets their needs.
Trades Academies provide a different learning choice for students – vocational learning directly related to the workforce and skill needs of industry.
They deliver trades and technology programmes to secondary students based on partnerships between schools, tertiary institutions, industry training organisations, and employers.
The programmes are all about offering students more choice about how and what they will learn. They are becoming an increasingly popular choice for more young people.
Students like learning that is directly relevant to their career aspirations and is a starting point for them to go on to higher studies in their chosen area.
So National is shifting more funding to Trades Academy places to meet the demand from our young students. From 2016, there will be 600 extra Trades Academy places per year, on top of the 340 extra places already announced in Budget 2015 – totalling 940 more a year.
The extra places will be prioritised to areas where there are more young people at risk of not achieving NCEA Level 2 and would benefit from having the additional learning choices, such as Northland, South Auckland, Bay of Plenty, and Gisborne.
The recent Education Review Office report on Trades Academies noted that the learning in Trades Academies motivated and engaged students, and helped them change their attitude to learning. It also found students developed a clear learning pathway into careers.
Trade Academies play a key role in ensuring more young people achieve the qualifications they need to successfully participate in the modern economy, and New Zealand employers get workers with the skills industries need.
A skilled workforce is the engine-room of a thriving economy.
With Principal Mike Purcell of Henderson High School and my 2016 Youth MP Fa’ataualofa Abbytailor So’olefai.
Youth MP 2016
I have selected my Youth MP for 2016. Her name is Fa’ataualofa Abbytailor So’olefai from Henderson High School. She is a Year 12 student and will join 120 other Youth MPs on in July next year. I was very impressed with all the applicants and wish we could take them all down to Wellington. Our Youth MP will engage with the youth in her community to gather their views and represent them in Parliament.
Youth Parliament 2016 is a significant opportunity for young New Zealanders to share their views and the views of their peers with the country’s decision-makers. Held once every parliamentary term, Youth Parliament gives young people the opportunity to understand and participate in Parliament and the decision-making process.
Last month I visited the principals at Henderson Primary, Edmonton Primary, Liston College, Rangeview Intermediate, Birdwood Primary Henderson High School and Te Kura Kaupapa Ranui. I was really impressed with the tremendous work they do in their schools. At Bruce McLaren Intermediate I spoke at their assembly to acknowledge all our teachers on International Teachers day. I also paid tribute to the teachers I had that made a real impact on me and the choices I made.
Pop the Top Spring Festival, Te Atatu Peninsula
In the weekend I was at the Pop the Top, Te Atatu Peninsula’s Spring Festival at the Te Atatu peninsula community centre, which ran from the 17-31 October. It was a celebration of cultural diversity with events and activities like zumba, pilates, yoga, cooking, art, photo exhibition, book swap, native plants, Samoan drumming, Chinese cooking, dance, eating healthy, wine & cheese tasting, a community potluck dinner, and many others run by individuals and groups within the community. I met locals, Dalton Neho who is making outdoor furniture form recycled materials and good friend Tamati Norman who has started his own skincare product line called ‘Native’. There was definitely something there for everyone. Congratulations to the organisers for an excellent job in bringing all this talent together and celebrating what is unique in Te Atatu peninsula.
Waitakere District Court Graduation
It was an honour to attend the graduation of a participant in the Alcohol and other Drug Treatment Court (AODTC), a five-year pilot programme set up by Judges Lisa Tremewan and Ema Aitken at the Auckland and Waitakere District Courts. It was humbling to hear of the success stories of the participants who had turned their lives around. The rationale of the project is to keep people in the Court longer and to engage them in treatment. The longer they are engaged, the better chance they have of success. The model is practised in over 2,500 locations in the United States. I was very impressed and and encouraged by the great work being done by Judge Lisa Tremewan and the providers, familes and individuals in achieving good outcomes.
At a morning tea in Te Atatu South we had some fiery discussions and questions from our senior citizens around the flag, local body issues, my private member’s bill, and other important topics. It was great to see local stalwarts such as Elizabeth Grimmer, Beverley Webb, Heather Wylie, Bill Teariki, Vishare Khire and others attend.
In the weekend I celebrated Diwali (the Festival of Lights) with my Parliamentary colleague Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, his electorate agent Rahul Chopra, and the Indian community at the Trusts Stadium. Diwali symbolises the triumph of light over darkness, good over evil and the renewal of life. It was awesome to witness the festivities and cultural rituals on display and of course the tasty, spicy food. Happy Diwali to the Indian community! Shubha Deepawali and Happy Bandi Chorr Divas.
I finsihed off the month at West City Mall collecting for the Blind Foundation. Thank you to the generous people who donated to this worthy cause. The Blind Foundation does such an awesome job and deserves all the support it can get. Thanks to Phil Turner, Accessible Formats Manager of the Blind Foundation for popping in with my t-shirt.
I attended the Te Atatu community House AGM, and was great to listen and discuss with Jacqui Hanson the Co-ordinator, Leo Nobilo and others on the future plans for the house which plays an integral part in the Te Atatu community.
News from Parliament
Events in November
26 Nov: White Ribbon Campaign Waitakere
27 Nov: Pacific in the Park, Ranui Primary School
29 Nov: Sunpix Awards
I look forward to meeting you at the community events I will be attending over the coming weeks. If there is an issue you wish to discuss with me please ring/email to book an appointment. My door is always open.