Amy - Admin Extraordinaire

Amy Jacobsen

As a qualified secondary school teacher I have seen the barriers to learning in the classroom first hand. With experience in four Waikato High Schools of varying deciles, the struggles of students, teachers and families are very real, and quite complex. The intentions of all schools are without a doubt in the best interest of their students, however most schools are dealing with aging facilities, high class numbers, changing curriculum (NCEA changes), and a diverse range of learning needs of their classes. I often felt the role of teacher is split into three; psuedo parent, social worker, then lastly educator.

Education is the gateway out of poverty without a doubt. Unfortunately some students by no fault of their own are already on the backfoot, be it from learning challenges, economic background, challenging home environments, a number of school changes… the list goes on. These kids are often in survival mode and as a result miss out on chunks of foundational knowledge. It is THESE kids who need further support and are often unable to access it.

I joined MFAL after tutoring students for another organisation and was awestruck how quickly kids picked up new skills with targeted one-on-one learning. I believe in tuition support because I have seen it work. It is the model of help that I had hoped to offer my classroom students, but simply did not have the time or resources to do so.

I have taught both literacy and numeracy, and can say confidently that if I had to choose one that students need, it is numeracy. As adults we use maths everyday in various forms; food budgeting, calculating how much fuel to get to one place, time to get to locations, making food with our families. It is an essential skill and no calculator in the world will help unless you understand what you are asking it to do, unless you understand maths.


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