Confident about learning
Sam Lakatani remembers the day he was expelled from high school for cutting classes.
“There were four fellas in front of me and then it was, ‘Mr Lakatani, we’d like you to leave’. I never forgot that,’’ he says.
Mr Lakatani went home and got a long lecture from his big brother.
Two weeks later he got a job reconditioning shock absorbers.
It’s only now that he’s completed adult training through a workplace communication course that the Freemans Bay resident feels he’s had a second chance at education.
This week is Adult Learners Week and Mr Lakatani is among those raising the profile of adult learning.
The week is an opportunity to celebrate the successes and achievements of everyone taking part in Adult and Community Education (ACE).
It has also become a vehicle for encouraging others to consider adult education, whether it is learning to adjust to life in a new country, retraining to find employment, adjusting to life after prison, acquiring parenting skills or just getting out and doing an activity to make life better and meet people.
Mr Lakatani says the workplace course at his previous job, City Care, unlocked a confidence in him that makes all the difference.
“It’s actually helped me to become a more approachable person. My tutor also made me think for myself – I didn’t do that at school.”
The course, delivered by workplace trainers Sadler & Associates, is taught onsite at various workplaces around New Zealand. It is a partnership between employers, government and trainers which aims to help people reach their full potential with the overall goal of improving workplace pro- ductivity and efficiency.
Mr Lakatani’s tutor Hazel Balderston says the change in his confidence has been significant.
She says the training also helped him to draw the links between the value of his life experience and what this had taught him.
Mr Lakatani is now setting goals for the future.
“I’m ready to pick up my game – I’d like to teach and coach in future,” he says.
Adult learning: Sam Lakatani and tutor Hazel Balderston. Mr Lakatani is helping promote Adult Learners Week.