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BOP tertiary intentions receive community endorsement

Collaboration will be the key to achieving priorities set out in the Bay of Plenty Tertiary Intentions Strategy, which has been finalised this month after extensive public and stakeholder consultation.

The Tertiary Intentions Strategy (TIS), formerly known as the Tertiary Action Plan, is a region-wide document that has been established to develop a collective vision, strategy and desired actions for tertiary education delivery in the Bay of Plenty and Taupo. It is closely aligned with local industry and the community.

Chairman Bill Wasley says the basis of achieving sustainable regional growth is through education and therefore the community’s endorsement of a collaborative approach with a strong regional focus, will effect real change for the region.

“Tertiary education is a cornerstone of a strong and skilled economy and a major contributor to improved social and community wellbeing. The Tertiary Intentions Strategy outlines the region’s vision for strong and effective partnerships between regional stakeholders such as economic development agencies, iwi, industry, community groups, government agencies and the tertiary education sector. This will significantly contribute to driving sustainable social, cultural, environmental and economic development in the wider Bay of Plenty region.”

TIS project manager Greg Simmonds says the strategy received positive feedback from the community during public consultation in August and September.

“We received a significant amount of positive community feedback on the draft strategy, which helped us crystallise five key strategic themes which form the basis of recommended actions. These themes are collaborative leadership; Maori engagement and participation; transitional support between secondary school, tertiary education and employment; innovation; and international education.

“Another key initiative to come out of community engagement was support for a specialised and regionally-driven group that would be responsible for the implementation and achievement of the actions set out in the strategy.”

Mr Simmonds says overall objectives of the final strategy include increasing capability and capacity, generating knowledge and innovation and creating sustainable growth.

Recommendations in the strategy have been informed by regional stakeholder interviews, feedback from the wider community, an analysis of regional data and a review of literature on regional tertiary delivery models.

Next steps include establishing a regional tertiary implementation group responsible for working with stakeholders to develop and adopt an annual implementation plan and reporting six-monthly to local authorities on progress.

The strategy incorporates the regions of Eastern and Western Bay of Plenty, Rotorua and Taupo and will be formally launched in 2015. For more information, click here.

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Monday, November 10, 2014

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