Speaking at the Annual National Centre of Literacy and Numeracy for Adults Symposium in Wellington, Mr Joyce announced “Te Ata Hapara” for Maori learners and the “English as a Second Language Option.” Both are part of the Literacy and Numeracy for Adults Assessment Tool which is the key diagnostic tool for adult literacy and numeracy competency in New Zealand.
“New Zealanders who struggle with literacy and numeracy must have the opportunity to gain the skills they need to find sustainable employment,” says Mr Joyce.
Improving adult literacy and numeracy is one of the six priorities in the Government’s Tertiary Education Strategy. In 2015 over $300 million will be invested literacy and numeracy learning and assessment programmes through the Tertiary Education Commission.
There are 1.3 million New Zealanders with low or very low literacy and numeracy skills, with Māori and Pasifika adults over represented in the statistics.
“The number of learners receiving adult literacy and numeracy opportunities through TEC funded initiatives each year has quadrupled since 2010 to an estimated 175,000 in 2013. This figure continues to grow with the embedding of literacy and numeracy throughout foundation-level education,” Mr Joyce says.
Guiding the work of the TEC in the area of literacy and numeracy is the Literacy and Numeracy Implementation Strategy which is currently open for consultation. The strategy sets out how the tertiary education sector, employers and learners will lift literacy and numeracy skills between 2015 and 2019. For further information on the strategy and the process for consult click here.