Tahatai Coast School was yesterday named the regional winner of the first Tahi Rua Toru Tech national championship.

Tahi Rua Toru Tech, a new digital technology championship open to all New Zealand school students, was launched in April this year.

Local technology hero and IT Professionals New Zealand president Mike Dennehy said the entries were a great example of the innovation and creativity Kiwi kids were capable of.

"It's fantastic to see the that the emphasis in Tahi Rua Toru Tech is on creating solutions for real-world problems – it is not just about learning how to use a device or an application," he said.

Tahatai Coast School was the first challenge winner for a website designed by Year 5 students designed not only to educate people on zero waste, but for people to purchase zero waste environmental products.

The team, named Kereru, will now compete for the national title in their respective levels at the national finals in Wellington on December 5.

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The competition, backed by the Ministry of Education, is designed to encourage greater participation in technology and will inform and inspire students, teachers, parents and their communities about the new digital technology/hangarau matihiko curriculum.

The curriculum is currently being introduced at all primary and secondary school levels for Years 0 to 10 in 2020.

IT Professionals NZ chief executive Paul Matthews said ensuring all Kiwi children and young people leave school with a basic understanding of digital technology was essential in preparing them for the 21st century workforce.

"Tahi Rua Toru Tech sets out to provide a positive experience about this important subject before it becomes compulsory," Matthews said.

He said every student in New Zealand had the potential to shine in Tahi Rua Toru Tech – and in digital technology.

"This is not only a competition for students who are good at maths," he said.

"Successful technology solutions require the application of every skillset, including design, logic, art and people skills."

Matthews said the competition emphasised teamwork, as students will be required to work in groups.

"Great solutions are not invented by individuals, they are created by teams of people working together to achieve a common goal."