Chris Hipkins

So now a Charter school isn’t spending enough money?

You’ve really got to love the Labour party.

First they complain that charter schools are getting too much funding, and now Chris Hipkins is complaining they aren’t spending enough.

The Minister of Education has been questioned over why a charter school has ended up with $2.5 million of unspent government funding sitting in its bank.

Hekia Parata has defended the funding of the school in Whangarei, saying it was performing well.

The first group of the publicly-funded private schools opened last year followed by a second group this year.

Labour MP Chris Hipkins challenged the minister today over charter school money, using Whangarei charter school Te Kura Hourua O Whangarei Terenga Paraoa, run by He Puna Marama Trust, as an example.

“How can she claim that the funds being given to partnership schools are being used for education when He Puna Marama Trust received $3.9 million in government funding to the end of last year – yet their audited accounts show they only spent $1.4 million on education, leaving $2.5 million unaccounted for?”

The minister said Mr Hipkins was “quoting selectively” from the accounts.

She said the trust was responsible for other schools, including early childhood centres and an academy.   Read more »

Two Politicians, two very different parties but a common belief in a ‘ Fair go ‘

After the story of the Student teacher hit the headlines I approached three politicians for comment and their responses are below. Two of them have a common belief in a ‘fair go’ for the Student teacher which is heartening to see.

Labour Party’s Spokesperson for Education, Chris Hipkins

Chris Hipkins

Chris Hipkins,Labour Party’s spokesperson for Education.

I don’t comment on specific employment matters.

On the general issue, I would expect all trainee teachers to be given full support to complete their qualifications. They should not be discriminated against based on gender, race, sexuality, past employment, or future employment prospects.

– Chris Hipkins

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Labour’s leadership puts head in sand and starts cleansing dissent

Matthew Hooton, in his NBR column tells the tale of how Labour are moving to shut down what they see as dissent inside their party.

Progress wanted Labour to take a more holistic view of who people are, how they live and where they want to be.  As they see it, in a 24-hour day, people want the opportunity to spend eight hours being involved in creating something meaningful and valuable at work.  They want another eight hours to enjoy time with their families and communities.  And they need the remaining eight hours for sleep in a safe, warm, comfortable home.

Progress believes this more well-rounded vision is a far more accurate echo of the message of Labour’s original founders than the views of the “self-serving unionists and gaggle of gays” they believe have undue influence on the party today.

Alongside Labour’s approved factions – the Women’s Council, Te Kaunihera Maori, the unions, Rainbow, the Pasifika Sector and so on – the new Progress group thought they might have something to offer.  It turned out they were wrong.

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Northland College has over $2.6M in unspent property budgets

Winston Peters, the Labour party and assorted other vested interests are crying a river of tears over Northland College and their unkempt buildings.

Apparently it is all the government’s fault, despite the school receiving far more in annual funding than any charter school gets, and it being staffed by union flunkies.

But take a quick look through the Ministry of Education property system, which is publicly accessible. You can drill in to project specifics.

It appears that the neglect set in after Jim Peters, Winston’s brother finished up as Principal in 2002.

And Northland College appears to have over $2.6million in unspent property budgets – no wonder the place is run down.

Northland College Budgets Allocated 2001 to 2014

Northland College Budgets Allocated 2001 to 2014

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Labour lies about door and Judith shanks them

Judith Collins has shown that she still has the goods, shanking Labour hard over the $30,000 door between offices that they have insisted on.

Audrey Young has the story:

National MP Judith Collins tonight released emails that show a $30,000 door that will separate Labour MPs from National MPs sharing a floor in Parliament House was opposed by the National Party.

She and six other National MPs were consulted about the door by National senior whip Tim Macindoe in January this year.

Mr Macindoe’s reply to her and the six other MPs he consulted says: “I have now heard from all of you in response to my request for your thoughts about installing an extra security door on Level2 and I’m pleased that you are all of the same view…Thank-you for replying and for the helpful reasons you provided for not wanting the door.”

Mr Macindoe said he had told Jim Robb, the Parliamentary Service group manager of precinct services, that National wanted to the status quo to be maintained.

Labour whip Chris Hipkins said yesterday the door had been proposed by National MP Gerry Brownlee after last September’s election, but omitted to say parties had been consulted in January to say whether they really wanted it.

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PPTA will be outraged over this!

The government is spending $298 million on four new schools via a PPP (i.e. a private company is making a profit).

Education Minister Hekia Parata last week signed the $298 million contract with the Future Schools Partners (FSP) consortium to finance, design, construct, and maintain Ormiston Junior College in Auckland, Aranui Community Campus and Rolleston Secondary School in Canterbury and Wakatipu High School in Queenstown.

Eventually this will cover 6000 students and the set up cost equates to $9.83 million per 200 children.

Charter Schools are all charitable and their set-up equates to $1.12 million per 200 children.    Read more »

Why do Labour not take the easy wins against John Key?

The Labour Party are dead set useless and concentrate on all the wrong things.

They have badgered the PM for being a dork and pulling a waitresses hair, and badgered so much that the voting public think that Key has been victimised because Labour have gone over the top on it.

They have been calling for a Minister to step down because something that his adult brother did, as if the minister had any control over his sibling. The public are again struggling to work out what Labour is on about for the simple reason that they know that if one of their family members did something dodgy that they had no control over they would hate to be held to account.   Read more »

It’s ok, she’s registered

Being a P smuggling drug dealer is no impediment to teach as once again our teacher registration process is shown up for the farce that it is.

Labour and the Greens oppose charter schools, mainly on the basis that teachers don’t have to be registered.

A former childcare worker and P addict caught smuggling methamphetamine into New Zealand has been cleared by her professional body to return to the classroom.

Haley Carol Jacobs, 37, was sentenced last year in the Auckland District Court to six months’ home detention for importing bags of P from her South African homeland.

She lost her job and her husband and feared that she had blown a promising early learning career.

But now, a New Zealand Teachers Council disciplinary tribunal has concluded that her “very serious” offending should not result in her being struck off the teaching register.

There were “mitigating circumstances”, the tribunal found, including that she had admitted her offending and took responsibility for it from the start.    Read more »

A Challenge to Chris Hipkins

Hipkins! ...eyes front and pay attention!

Hipkins! …eyes front and pay attention!

Chris Hipkins, apparent opposition spokesperson for Education refuses to visit New Zealand’s successful Charter Schools.

Instead he prefers sitting in parliament, being fed nonsense by Tom Haig of the PPTA and taking pot shots at the one Charter School that has struggled. The best he has managed is to follow the teacher union’s 2011 talking point – i.e. the  “failed model overseas” nonsense.

Tennis great Andre Agassi is putting his heart and soul into the model and runs a highly acclaimed Charter School in Las Vegas. He aims for 99 more.

The challenge to Hipkins – please publicly tell Agassi that his is a failed model and that he isn’t really helping all of the kids who are going to college through the education he is helping to provide.

Call him up, send him an email, take a delegation to his school and tell him to his face, invite him here.

Do what ever it takes to lift from him his misapprehension before he damages thousands more children.

It is time to take a stand Mr Hipkins.   Read more »

Speaking of National and arrogance… Hekia Parata

bill-english-hekia-parata-john-key

Charter schools are an important and effective step towards solving a problem with children that are on the fringes of the current education system.  Charter schools are also a political hot potato.  The opposition and the media are looking for any excuse to expose them as failures.

Education Minister Hekia Parata ignored advice from her ministry and signed off on a Northland charter school that has been plagued with problems since opening last year.

It can be revealed that Parata received a glowing reference from the charter school authorisation board regarding Te Kura Hourua ki Whangaruru and signed a contract with the school’s sponsor in September 2013.

That was despite ministry concerns the Whangaruru school had not outlined a “safe environment” for students and had not spoken with local iwi about their plans.

Since the school opened, the Education Review Office has identified a number of problems with the quality of teaching, learning, management, leadership and student engagement.

The quality of teaching, learning, management, leadership and student engagement.  That’s not a minor list of complaints.   Read more »