Day At The Track

HRNZ's education structure paying dividends

02:21 AM 24 Aug 2012 NZST
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When Mathew McAuley drove his first winner from his first race-night drive at Cambridge Raceway last night it reflected the sterling work put in place by Harness Racing New Zealand's (HRNZ) Gateway and Star programmes.

HRNZ's education and training manager, Kristie Hill, said the governing body some time ago recognised the need to educate and inform the younger members of our communities about the horse and the harness racing industry.

"We now offer equine training for high school students. Gateway and Star programs are offered at most high schools throughout New Zealand and strengthen pathways for students to further education and training or employment," Hill said.

She said senior students that had an interest in horses now had the opportunity to add equine unit standards to their ‘NCEA Record of Learning'.

"HRNZ has a number of unit standards resources available for high school students to work on either by correspondence or in small classroom environment with other students who are also interested in the equine athlete. They complete practical components of the unit standards in stables around New Zealand<" hill said.

She went on to say that the students had access to first class workbooks, resources and assessments that have embedded numeracy and literacy. These were developed by industry professionals.

"Gateway is proving an invaluable transition platform for high school students who have an interest in horses after leaving Kidz Kartz - Pony Club (or they may be from harness racing families) and prior to entering the workforce.

McAuley is currently attending cadet school and studying towards a level four qualification.

Hill said prior to leaving school McAuley was on a Gateway program which allowed him to study equine units and get valuable experience in stables.

What Sean McCaffrey had to say about his young employee - Mathew McAuley.

By Duane RANGER (editor)

Mathew McAuley's first race-night win in his first drive behind Bells On Fire:

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