Teachers and Curriculum


diverse learning needs


Technology education, as mandated in the New Zealand Curriculum (Ministry of Education, 2007)
provides an opportunity for schools and teachers to offer contextually relevant and innovative
curriculum responses. Recent governmental initiatives appear to offer additional transitional
pathways for ‘at risk’ students but signpost new challenges for technology teachers who are already
experiencing tensions between political agenda, school compliance and community expectations.
The research upon which this article is based highlights that even when technology teachers feel
motivated and empowered to enact curriculum change in their schools, local constraints require
ongoing, negotiated responses to ensure that all of their students’ diverse learning needs are being
addressed. This article asserts that the continued political shift towards vocational education
through initiatives such as the introduction of the Youth Guarantee Scheme, have the potential to
further undermine the position of technology teachers and technology education within the New
Zealand secondary schooling system.

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