NorthTec relaunches Dargaville learning centre

30 January 2020

NorthTec relaunches Dargaville learning centre

Staff, past and future students gathered at NorthTec’s “new” Dargaville centre to celebrate its launch as a learning hub in the Kaipara.

The campus at the corner of Gordon Street and Parore Street is owned by NorthTec and was used as its learning centre in Dargaville for many years, before transferring to premises in Murdoch Street until the end of 2019.

However, this year the Gordon/Parore Street centre has been refreshed and relaunched, bringing NorthTec back into the centre of town.

Around 60 people turned out to the whakatau and barbecue, with Ngāti Whātua kaumatua and NorthTec painting tutor, Ben Hita, leading the blessing of the freshly painted and upgraded premises.

A group of graduates from Matua Ben’s level 4 painting programme, which finished in 2019, took time out from their jobs to return to support him at the whakatau, and to urge new and potential students to make the most of the opportunities offered to them.

They were joined by staff from People Potential, which will also be based at the centre, working in partnership with NorthTec to offer education in the heart of the Kaipara region.

Matua Ben thanked all those who had been involved in upgrading the learning centre. He said: “My level 4 students are all in work but have taken time out of their jobs to come here to support you. They are the evidence of what NorthTec has offered them – here is an example of what NorthTec has done for students.”

NorthTec Chief Executive, Wayne Jackson, told the group that the relaunch of the Dargaville centre demonstrated that the Government’s plans to reorganise the vocational training sector included continuing to provide education in the regions.

He said: “I think this learning centre is a symbol of the investment in the sector that is going to happen. The signal from the Government is they realise that the cost of running small centres is not the same as running large centres in big cities. They have promised to recognise that, and will make sure that our seven campuses are well supported.”

NorthTec will deliver programmes in agriculture, horticulture, primary industry skills, sustainability practices, painting, construction and commercial transport from its Dargaville centre. Semester one gets under way on 17 February, so students can still enrol for these programmes.

People Potential will offer tutoring in NCEA levels 1 and 2, and will also provide Youth Services.