Many schools and early learning leaders will be very familiar with their local ERO team. Over coming Insights we want to take the opportunity to introduce you to some of the team who work in the background shaping the work we do in the sector. In this Insights we introduce Dr Deirdre Shaw.
Deirdre Shaw is Group Manager Evaluation and Policy. She has been at ERO for 14 years and in her current role for just over three. Deirdre and her team of 12 oversees the development of many of ERO’s nationally based evaluation studies and contract work for other government departments and NGOs. They also contribute ERO’s evaluation knowledge to the development of new and existing policy.
Deirdre has seen some significant changes during her time at ERO. “We’re now much more focused on wellbeing. We used to just go into schools and make an evaluative judgement about the system. Now we want to help schools solve the problems we identify. We look at how other schools have overcome similar challenges and we tell their story.”
“A common misconception people have about us is that we’re just Wellington wonks”, says Deirdre. “But we have children and grandchildren – we have personal and ongoing experience of the education system and we’re motivated to make it better for everyone.”
Deirdre has a PhD in human geography, which is about people their communities and their relationship with and across space and place. She grew up on a farm in the Waikato.