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Action plan targets better education in the Bay

Local industry, community groups and education providers in the wider Bay of Plenty have come together to form a collective action plan for tertiary education and research in the region and are seeking input from the wider community.

The Tertiary Action Plan (TAP) has been established to define a collective vision, strategy and desired actions for tertiary education delivery that is closely aligned with local industry needs and the community in the region.

Chairman Bill Wasley (pictured) says the TAP is a regional initiative and takes a Bay-wide approach, in order to best meet the education and research needs of Bay of Plenty people, businesses and communities.

“The aim of the plan is to propose how the region’s tertiary providers, along with government agencies, economic development agencies, iwi, industry and community groups can work in partnership to ensure the region’s current and future education priorities and research are met.

“Key objectives include increasing tertiary education participation and attainment in the region, particularly for Māori, developing a highly educated and skilled workforce that is aligned to regional needs, and facilitating research for sector development and innovation to help support overall economic growth and community development in the region.

“In order for the action plan to have the most impact and achieve these objectives, it is essential that all facets of the community have input into the strategy and that is why we are seeking feedback.”

He says the plan will provide clear guidance for institutions, industry and regional agencies – both collectively and individually – as to current and future tertiary education requirements and how they might fill any gaps or leverage opportunities.

As well as being a regional initiative, the TAP also contributes to the government’s National Tertiary Education Strategy, and has been designed to bring the national strategy to life, making it relevant to the Bay of Plenty region and people.

The TAP is supported by the Bay of Plenty Tertiary Education Partnership (which includes Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi, Bay of Plenty Polytechnic, University of Waikato and Waiariki Institute of Technology), local industry and local government (Bay of Plenty Regional Council, SmartGrowth, Priority One, Grow Rotorua, Toi EDA and Taupo District Council).

The plan incorporates the regions of Eastern and Western Bay of Plenty, Rotorua and Taupo, and is overseen by a reference group consisting of representatives from each of these regions. It is further supported by a project team, which is currently seeking input on the plan from a broad cross-section of the community.

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Thursday, June 5, 2014

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