Hadassah Wharawhara

Northland schoolgirl Hadassah Wharawhara was one of 12 young people selected to be a member of the new Ministry of Education Youth Advisory Group.

The group has been set up to enable young people to have their say and have more input on the education system and issues that affect them.

Topics the ministry expected the group to cover included the future of work, student well-being, education, mental health, perspectives on technology and the use of digital tools in learning and assessment.

The group will meet quarterly, in the third week of every term at the Ministry of Education in Wellington.

Hadassah is in Year 12 at Te Kāpehu Whetū partnership school in Whangarei.

“It’s really important for youth to have a say, a lot of the policies that are being created affect us firsthand so having a youth voice is key.”

She said her school had been very supportive, and she was excited to make a meaningful contribution.

“I’m the only student from the far North.

“I’m just doing this on behalf of my school and for Northland, and it’d be great for more Northland kids that want to do this, and proving that they can do it and anything else is possible.

“It’s really important for youth to have a say, a lot of the policies that are being created affect us firsthand so having a youth voice is key.”

Minister of Education Chris Hipkins said he will attend the orientation and the group meetings where possible.

When he couldn’t attend he said he would Skype in on the meeting.

An experienced youth facilitator selected by Ministry of Education officials will be present at each meeting.

Mr Hipkins expected the group to offer fresh perspectives and valuable insights about education.

“I want our young people to have a say in the way our education system works and the Youth Advisory Group provides an exciting opportunity for young New Zealanders to get involved in the decision-making.

“I am looking forward to working with this inspiring group of young people, hearing about their experiences of our education system, and how they think we can improve it.”

Insights from this group will be shared with the Ministry of Education and other education sector agencies.

 

 

Originally featured in the Northern Advocate, Monday, 23 November, 2017
by Charlotte Carter

Photo: Te Kapehu Whetu Partnership School student Hadassah Wharawhara has been selected for a Youth Advisory Group with the Ministry Of Education. Photo / John Stone