THURSDAY 6 SEPTEMBER 2018
FOUR RANGATAHI SHARE THEIR STORIES
… AND TALK ABOUT HOW VANGUARD MILITARY SCHOOL CHANGED THEIR LIVES
Dr Lance O’Sullivan urges the Minister of Education and all MPs to view the “Four rangatahi from Vanguard tell their stories” videos before considering the Education Amendment Bill.
Dr Lance O’Sullivan has invited the Minister of Education, all Members of Parliament and in particular the Māori Caucus in Parliament to view videos of young students at Vanguard Military School who have shared their stories and explained how their lives have been turned around by their attendance at the School. This Partnership School has been achieving outstanding results in academic, social and leadership terms for its largely Māori and Pacific Island students in years 11, 12 and 13 since it opened in February 2014.
“Now only in its fifth year, Vanguard Military School has demonstrated by its academic results that it genuinely transforms lives and has provided a positive and aspirational pathway for rangatahi who were failed by the mainstream education system”, he said.
“I was failed by mainstream education myself until I found an education model at Hato Petera College that was right for me that encouraged me to focus on the positive contribution I could make to society. This was achieved through recognising and developing important aspects of a young person – self-belief, pride and identity,” Dr O’Sullivan said.
Dr O’Sullivan said the stories of the rangatahi prompted him to make a series of videos so their stories could be told directly to political decisionmakers.
“It was a privilege to listen to the rangatahi who were very honest with me about the circumstances that brought them to Vanguard, and how a sense of hopelessness and despair can be turned into hopefulness, ambition and achievement thanks to the culture, discipline and sense of pride that is evident at Vanguard” he said.
“Each year hundreds of young people receive an outstanding education at Vanguard, where achievement levels are comparable and, in many cases, better than the top academic schools in New Zealand. These achievement levels prove that any child who is given a positive and uplifting environment can succeed and become valuable, contributing members of society.
“From my observation, many of the challenges facing schools across New Zealand such as recruitment and retention of good teachers and effective and efficient administrative and governance models have been managed very well by Vanguard and other Partnership Schools. These experiences and the value these new models of education offer should be incorporated into the Government’s review of New Zealand’s education system,” said Dr O’Sullivan.
“The generous support of people who also believe in the promise of what Partnership Schools had to offer youth of New Zealand allowed The MOKO Foundation to commission this work so these rangatahi could tell their story.
“This week the Select Committee considering the legislation that has enabled this change has reported back to Parliament. I invite every Member of Parliament to view these videos before they vote on the legislation and consider how the successes achieved by Partnership Schools can contribute to the Review of an education system that has not met the needs of many including in particular the best interests of Māori and Pasifika youth,” Dr O’Sullivan said.
“I have long been an advocate for disruption of outdated models of care in the health system that continues to underdeliver to those with the greatest needs. The time has arrived for disruption of the education system so that the benefits can flow to all New Zealand students,” he said.
“The MOKO Foundation is making the stories available this week on a staged basis on our website – www.themokofoundation.com – with a new story every day so everyone can see what a huge impact this amazing school with its powerful kaupapa has had on these young people,” said Dr O’Sullivan.
For further information or to arrange an interview with Dr Lance O’Sullivan please contact firstname.lastname@example.org / 021 257 2666
Parris’s story – Parris is a 17 year old student at Vanguard Military School doing NCEA Level 3. Six years ago her world fell apart and she started self-harming in response. Now she travels 4 hours every day to attend the school that has changed her life.
Josie’s Story – Josie had a baby when she was young and she had to make a hard decision in order to get her life back on track – see how the physical challenges she faced at Vanguard helped her to overcome her fears and enjoy the success of achievement.
Josie: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5BlIJtIwCmM being released 6 am Thursday 6 September)
Bradley’s story – Bradley lost his mother recently and before she passed away he made her a promise – now he’s focussed on fulfilling that promise at Vanguard Military School.
(Bradley’s story to be released 6 am Friday 7 September
Josephine’s story – Josephine had to leave her family and her home in order to live her best life. Now she works in a restaurant at night to support herself, pay rent, buy food and attend school. See how Vanguard helped her to achieve the education that is so important to her.
(Josephine’s story to be released 6 am Saturday 8 September)
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