Passchendaele competition launched

Ten senior students will get the opportunity to join the 100th anniversary commemorations of the Battle of Passchendaele in Belgium later this year, as part of a competition for schools and kura.

Education Minister Nikki Kaye and Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Maggie Barry say the national competition, for senior students aged 16-19, has been organised by the Ministry of Education with partners and sponsors the Fields of Remembrance Trust and the Passchendaele Society.

“Entrants are asked to use digital technology to produce a curriculum resource for Year 7-10 students about the Battle of Passchendaele,” says Nikki.

“The winners will attend the National Commemoration Service on October 12, 2017, at the Tyne Cot Cemetery near Zonnebeke in West Flanders.

“This is an amazing opportunity for senior students to learn more about the Battle of Passchendaele, and to share their insights with younger students through the curriculum resources they develop.”

Nikki says the competition is also a great example of the innovative ways that digital technologies are being used to transform teaching and learning in our classrooms.

Maggie says the Battle of Passchendaele left a deep scar on our country, and is a significant part of our history.

“The battle saw one of our darkest days as a nation, with 846 of our soldiers losing their lives on October 12, 1917.

“It's important we continue to commemorate all those who fought for our freedom and peace, and we provide opportunities for our young people to reflect on and honour their sacrifice.

Maggie says this will be the trip of a lifetime for the 10 winners, who get the opportunity – as she did two years ago – to stand on the battlefield, visit war cemeteries and understand the sacrifices made by their forebears.

The competition closes July 2, with winners announced July 24. For more information www.education.govt.nz/passchendaele

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