New Zealand at a very dire crossroads at the moment and it doesn’t seem like the situation is going to improve anytime soon either. Unlike most other developed countries, the biggest issue with New Zealand is that there are very few teachers available to teach the curriculum that is being offered. There are experienced teachers and professors at the top universities, but as we look lower down the pecking order, we find more and more staffing issues. And experts believe that this trend will also impact the best of universities in New Zealand. Education is one of the biggest sectors in the world and is fuelled by a lot of students flocking to colleges abroad. And for a long period of time, NZ looked like the perfect alternative to the west, with the price of education in Australia being too much for a lot of people in the developing world. But that trend looks like it might stop, with more and more staffing issues arising. So why is there such a situation in New Zealand? We are going to deep dive to find out why exactly the beautiful nation is facing such hardships.
The major reason is definitely the curriculum. The curriculum hasn’t been changed in decades and this has left a lot of teachers having to curb creativity in order to ensure that they finish the curriculum. The monotonous nature of the curriculum not only stresses out students, but also teachers. A lot of young teachers feel that they face burnout by the end of a 5-year time period and decide to either pursue further education or move on to an entirely different career path altogether.
The second reason is the lack of funds and the poor pay-scale for a teacher. Teaching is still one of the low-income professions in the country, and one study stated that farming paid more than teaching. The government has sat on educational improvement for far too long, and that is among the major reasons why they are facing such a huge backlash now. The fact of the matter is that not all teachers are going to pay at the same range as the best professors in universities, but for a nation that is trying to push forward the importance of education, it is a sorry sight to see teaching in the low-income bracket.
Large-scale changes need to be done, along with showing educational research its rightful place in the epicentre. But unfortunately for now, there seems to be no steps taken to improve the condition of teachers in New Zealand.