Jodie and her colleague Karina have identified that a lack of soft skills can be a significant barrier to students’ learning and employability and as a result have embarked on a project with Ako Aotearoa to develop descriptors and progressions to support tutors to consistently integrate soft skills into their programmes. In their interactive workshop, they will share key aspects of their work to date including the development of a tool which enables students to self-reflect and evaluate their soft skills.

Jodie is a passionate educator with more than twenty year’s experience in the Early Childhood, Primary and Tertiary sectors. She is currently CEO of Matapuna Training Centre, a Gisborne PTE that offers foundation education to youth and adults. Prior to taking up the role five years ago, Jodie was working as an independent consultant to Boards of Trustees and she completed a number of statutory interventions in the Gisborne/East Coast area.

Karina Terekia has ten years’ experience as a tutor at Matapuna Training Centre. She has held a variety of roles that have included adult and youth programmes. Karina is currently teaching the Induction Youth Guarantee class at Matapuna Training Centre. Her students are usually aged 16 or 17 and none have achieved NCEA level 1. Karina embeds literacy and numeracy into engaging projects to ensure that all students leaving her class have achieved the minimum Literacy and Numeracy requirements to achieve NCEA level 1.

In his workshop, Mike will share insights on how we can support learners who have been short-changed by the education system (especially those with dyslexia and other learning differences) to achieve in tertiary education and the workplace.

Mike Styles is the National Specialist – Literacy and Numeracy at Primary ITO (Industry Training Organisation).

He has led some major initiatives to support learners to achieve such as Primary ITO’s mentoring programme, where volunteer mentors assist industry trainees to achieve their qualifications.

Over the last five years, Mike has led Primary ITO’s programme to support learners who have dyslexia, and other learning differences. He is the project lead in an Ako Aotearoa National Project Fund research study to discover how best to support adults with dyslexia in multiple tertiary learning environments. He has presented on Primary ITO’s wrap-around support programme for dyslexic learners at conferences in Oxford UK, Modena Italy, and Hobart Australia.