Charter Schools

Why don’t education reporters ask Charter schools these five questions?

screenshot-Whaleoil.co.nz

screenshot-Whaleoil.co.nz

Education reporters write articles like the one below, which complaining about large class sizes, but don’t ask Charter schools how they manage to keep their classes small. They complain about schools not having enough money for IT and teachers not being paid enough, but don’t ask Charter schools how they do it despite tight budgets and less money than a State school of the same size.

Growing class sizes, pay levels for teachers and an increase in technology are the top concerns for Kiwi parents, a survey has revealed.

As the school year begins, almost half of respondents to an unscientific Herald on Sunday survey of 160 parents of primary-aged children, were concerned about the high number of pupils in each class. Three-quarters said teachers were not paid enough and 80 per cent were concerned that their children spent too much time focused on screens.

Some parents the Herald spoke to said class sizes needed to be limited and they feared further growth would lead to stressed teachers and poor academic results.

-Herald on Sunday

I would like education reporters to ask the following questions of the three Auckland Charter schools that I visited last year.

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NZ First want taxpayers’ money paid back; They could start with their own $158,000

NZ First want taxpayers’ money paid back from the failed Charter school up north, ironically in the pensioner-of St-Mary’s-Bay’s electorate.

The government last year refused to consider the survival of a Northland charter school unless its owners agreed to reimburse the Crown if it was shut down, documents show.

Education Minister Hekia Parata would not confirm if the trust that owned the failed Te Pumanawa o te Wairua school had agreed to reimburse the Crown.

New Zealand First said the government must ensure it is reimbursed if any more charter schools close.

Documents obtained by the party under the Official Information Act show the government last year wanted the owners of the school at Whangaruru to agree to sell its property and chattels if it closed.

A spokesman for Ms Parata would not say how the trust responded to that request. He said only that the school’s land and other assets would be the subject of a commercial negotiation process.   Read more »

Charter Schools are actually a Socialist’s wet dream

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The total cost of sending child to state school for 13 years tops $35,000. -Fairfax NZ

State schools are not as free as we think they are. Charter schools on the other hand, have been criticised for providing free services by both Labour and the PPTA. At West Auckland Middle School, uniform is provided, stationery is provided, no donations are asked for and no trip or sports fees are required.

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Dope-growing teacher still registered

We’ve been told that Charter Schools and the government put children at risk because there isn’t a mandatory requirement for registration. The teacher unions and Labour tell us that kids need protection and teacher registration is the way to protect them.

And every week we are presented with headlines about teachers before the courts or the tribunal for offences…like drug cultivation.

A Northland relief teacher who was caught growing cannabis has kept his registration after renouncing the drug.

Colin James White, 61, was convicted of cultivating cannabis in December 2014 after police found cannabis growing in his backyard.

Police were visiting the home where White lives with his ex-wife on an unrelated matter when they found four plants growing in a tunnel house in between tomato plants.

A search inside the house revealed two containers with 738 cannabis seeds hidden behind a skirting board and a small amount of dried cannabis.   Read more »

2015 Vanguard Military School graduation impresses

Charter school, West Auckland Middle School has received its first report card from ERO and the future looks bright. Vanguard Military School recently celebrated its own success in a moving graduation ceremony.

Despite the Labour Party and PPTA’s determined opposition to Partnership schools the success stories will not be suppressed. Note the comment of Lulu Bellisma. Her son is already in a partnership school and she would love that to continue when he is high school age.

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Maori and Pasifika embrace Charter schools, the unions must be having kittens

Maori and Pasifika are embracing charter schools with 18 of the 25 applicants for new charter schools coming from those communities.

Clearly there is massive dissatisfaction with current education models.

The authorisation board said 25 organisations had applied to set up more of the publicly funded private schools to open in 2017.

It said much of the interest was from educators and community groups representing Māori and Pasifika people, and most of the applications were from the North Island.

The board’s chair, Catherine Isaac, said the level of interest reflected confidence in the charter school system and showed it worked well.

“We do see it as a vote of confidence in a policy that is connecting innovators with disadvantaged students whose needs are not being met by the existing state school system.”

Ms Isaac said the board would evaluate the proposals over the next two months and announce its decisions by next year.

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Face of the day

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Today’s face of the day Michelle Schneideman, has recently been announced as Head Girl for Epsom Girls’ Grammar for 2016.

Michelle is a former pupil of Mt Hobson Middle School, which is the educational model on which Charter schools, South Auckland Middle School and West Auckland  Middle School are based.

I wish her all the very best for her future and am glad that students in West and South Auckland will now have the opportunity to get the kind of middle school education she gained at Mt Hobson.

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Applications for new Charter Schools Mainly from Maori and Pasifika

Vanguard Military School students doing PT PHOTO-Facebook

Vanguard Military School students doing PT
PHOTO-Facebook

Four of the original five Charter Schools have been successful and this success has resulted in a significant level of interest from mainly Maori And Pasifika community groups. While Education unions opposed to Charter Schools continue to focus on Te Pumanawa o te Wairua, in Northland that now has reduced funding for 40 students because of ongoing problems, the four successful schools have shown what can be achieved.

The board that vets applications for new charter schools says it is not surprised at seeing so many applications.

…It said much of the interest was from educators and community groups representing Māori and Pasifika people, and most of the applications were from the North Island.

The board’s chair, Catherine Isaac, said the level of interest reflected confidence in the charter school system and showed it worked well.

“We do see it as a vote of confidence in a policy that is connecting innovators with disadvantaged students whose needs are not being met by the existing state school system.”

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The hits on education keep coming

Trevor Mallard

Trevor Mallard

There seems to be a rash of negative education stories at the moment.

Firstly there is the upset over un qualified Grandmothers providing pre school care for 3-4 year olds with Trevor Mallard saying…

“I’m not saying that grandparents can’t look after grandchildren but they’re not professionals or trained and don’t think it’s the role of the state to be paying people who don’t have the training.”

Ironically the situation Trevor is criticising was created by the Labour government.

The Labour government brought in 20-hours free ECE for three and four-year-olds in its final term.

-Kirsty Johnston A Newspaper

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He says brochure for a cruise ship holiday like it’s a bad thing

Tom Haig in his article on the PPTA Blog writes disparagingly about a recent report’s findings on Charter Schools. As he highlights each positive statement from the report I can almost hear the scorn dripping off his fingers as he types.

“It’s a private commercial organisation” , a very profitable one too ”

Guess what? Charter school students love their small class sizes and feel like teachers really have time to work with them as individuals.

That’s the stunning new finding from the just released round one evaluation.

This report feels a bit like a brochure for a cruise ship holiday. Yep, cruise ship customers love it. But let’s not talk about the impact on the islands where the ships stop, discharge tourists and waste, and move right along.

confused child

confused child

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