Term Two 2021 May Update


It is hard to believe we are a couple of weeks into term two.  We hope that you have had a great start, a chance to recharge the batteries after a long first term.

In April I had the privilege of speaking to our APPA Alumni. There is so much knowledge and expertise in this group. It was an honour to sit and chat with past principals and mentors and update them on the work that we are doing.  They have much to share and were very interested in future curriculum updates.


I am looking forward to visiting some cluster breakfasts in the coming months, HPPA this month and North Shore next month. If you would like me to visit your cluster please email me.

We have a few items to share in this update, we know your time is precious so we will try to be brief.

Remember your APPA Executive can help answer questions, provide an ear for support and serve as advocates if you have any issues you need addressed.

We are looking forward to seeing you at the APPA Luncheon on the 26th of May.

La' ma ne'ne' 'äe | Go and be well

Stephen Lethbridge


We welcome Saane Faaofo-Oldehaver to the Executive. Saane fills the NZPPA co-option position to the Executive. We hope to have the Aka Tamaki position filled very soon.

The APPA Executive travelled to Wellington for the NZPF Moot late last term. We used this opportunity to meet with the Ministry of Education, ERO, Minster Tinetti and Minister Hipkins.

ERO Meeting

We met with Nicholas Pole and Jane Lee to talk about the ERO trial experience. We shared that whilst the trial schools may be getting a significant amount of resource with regular visits and carefully constructed interactions, schools not in the trial were receiving a light touch. We also raised concerns around the evaluation of the project and were assured that this would begin promptly.

Ministry of Education

Iona Holsted and Ellen MacGregor-Reid hosted us at Mātauranga House and we were taken through the Education Service Agency information. We also shared our concerns around the accuracy of predicted student numbers across the region over the coming years as well as the inequity we face in terms of staffing and resourcing when compared to our Secondary School counterparts.

The ESA information was surprising. We found it difficult to see where local support for schools was going to be enhanced. In short, this looked like an internal reorganisation with additional Deputy Secretaries having oversight over the Northern, Central and Southern regions. Regional Directors of Education remain in place but will report to the newly created Deputy Secretary positions. It looks like this is as local as it gets! We shared some concerns over this and urged for sector consultation, but were informed that ESA establishment was the domain of the Ministry and consultation is happening within the MoE and that is where it will stay.

Minister Tinetti

It was great to connect with a fellow Principal in parliament. We talked about our issues with Learning Support, Learning Support Coordinators, Kāhui Ako, Curriculum Review, Workload, and the Education Political football. We were assured that 'one of us' was there now and things will start to happen... This was the first time we had met with Jan and we are looking forward to re-visiting these initial conversations to see how much traction the sector is getting.

Minister Hipkins

From the outset we emphasised that our relationship with the Ministry has never been better. Covid-19 has increased the level of trust between schools and the Ministry. We informed the Minister that we now needed to get traction on all the issues that we were facing prior to Covid - they haven't gone away and, in some instances, they are now worse. The Minister wanted to assure us that he was in awe of how Auckland had handled repeated lockdowns and he is working with his Associate Ministers to address the inequity in our system.

We shared our concern about the lack of 'local support for schools' in the ESA model. We said we could not really see any of his recommendations in the new model. This prompted him to state that local support was important and he will seek further clarification on the difference the ESA will make for schools on the ground.

We talked about vaccination roll out and it was quite clear that the Education Sector will not get any preferential treatment. We offered Auckland schools as community vaccination hubs and the Minister said that all options were on the table. As we left the Minister's Office the Vaccination team was walking in to update the Minister.

Executive Commitment

Your executive are committed to working with the Ministry to have the issues we face in Auckland addressed. We will have new people to work with due to Katrina Casey leaving the MoE at the end of June. Katrina has an amazing amount of institutional knowledge that will be hard to replace. We will continue to press the MoE to support us on the challenging issues we face in our region.

Our Term One Luncheon was a huge success with great food, important information around the Privacy Act and connecting with colleagues.

We hope you can join us for our Term Two Luncheon.

When: Wednesday 26 May 12:30 - 2:00pm

Where: Ellerslie Event Centre

Speakers: Perry Rush NZPF President and Liam Rutherford NZEI President

Both Perry and Liam are keen to talk about where we are at with the Education Accord as well as the issues that we are facing on a daily basis.

When you signed up for membership at the start of the year you would probably have pre-paid for the lunches. That means we will assume you are coming.  If circumstances change, or you are bringing a guest, please let Sue Green know. If you didn't sign up - you need to let Sue Green know as well - you don't want to miss the food and dialogue!

Perry and Liam need to see the power of the region so let us pack out the Ellerslie Event Centre. We look forward to seeing you.

Once again we had an interrupted start to the year with Covid-19 level 3 status meaning that we had to hold a Zoom meeting in March. This week we held a face to face council meeting, it was so good to dialogue in person. At this meeting we shared the revised framework for the Council Meetings.

We want to move away from the traditional presentation of cluster reports to using the broad Council expertise to work on the issues we all face. Each cluster president/representative is in one of our Strategic Goal Groups.  These are:

  • Learning Support
  • Teacher Supply, Resourcing and Capacity
  • Curriculum Review
  • Progress & Achievement

Note the dates and the Cluster 'Newbie' column - we want Cluster Reps to bring along a colleague from their cluster so that we get some diverse voices around the table.

We are looking forward to the progress that the council makes in these areas.