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(New Zealand) $7.4B for "learning support" not enough for highest needs

Nov 17, 2022, Newstalk: ‘Substantial investment’ needed to address complex school challenges – principal https://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/politics/higher-needs-review-substantial-investment-needed-to-address-complex-school-challenges-principal/

A principal says a plan to ramp up support for high-needs learning in schools is only “opening the door” to the growing challenges and will need “substantial investment” to hold it together.

Associate Education Minister Jan Tinetti today announced the findings of the Higher Needs Review, conducted over the past year drawing over a thousand submissions and which she said would assist about 30 per cent of all pupils.

Tinetti, who was a principal at Tauranga’s Merivale School before becoming an MP, said she had seen first-hand the importance of supporting children with high needs.

“We know that this is one of the most broken areas in education,” she said at Berhampore School in Wellington.

“It is something that not only the sector has been crying out for change, but also the families of the young people who have been underserved within the system.”

The Government spends $1.2 billion [$7.4B U.S.] a year on learning support, yet lots of those with the highest needs were missing out, she said.

Associate Education Minister Jan Tinetti visits students at Berhampore School in Wellington to announce the results of the Highest Needs Review. Photo / Michael Neilson