12 February 2020 at 9:00 am
From the CE: Manaakitanga: it's what we do
The outbreak of the novel coronavirus has been a challenging time for New Zealand’s international education sector. However, I’ve been proud to see that our key principle of manaakitanga has endured even under duress.
First, I want to acknowledge the complex and difficult situation that many students and their families, as well as agents, are facing during this period of uncertainty. This is a tough time, and I know there are a lot of people working hard in trying to make things a bit easier.
While there are no confirmed cases of coronavirus in New Zealand to date, there’s no doubt that this has been a frustrating start to the school and academic year.
I also want to acknowledge our sector – the education providers, peak bodies and related government agencies – who have been working hard to address this rapidly changing situation, both here and internationally.
Led by the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Education for the education sector, our sector has been working hard to respond to the impact of the coronavirus and support our international students.
Right now, we’re continuing to respond to short-term issues, while also looking at the longer term picture.
Looking ahead, amongst other things, we’re thinking about how we recognise and acknowledge the commitment that international students have made to study in New Zealand. We also need to remain a sought-after education destination and ensure students continue to be warmly welcomed to our shores.
Manaakitanga – to look after one another by extending respect, hospitality and warmth – must underpin everything we do.
I’d also like to thank the homestay providers and others who have continued to warmly welcome international students into their homes, and the staff who have ensured everyone has the support they need.
He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tangata! He tangata! He tangata!
What is the most important thing in the world? It is people! It is people! It is people!
Ka kite anō,
Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao