The teacher unions are never happy.
Despite a resounding majority victory, the first in the world under an MMP electoral system, the NZEI is claiming that John Key doesn’t have a mandate.
The largest teachers’ union in the country says it will continue to fight against the Government’s plans to reform the education system, despite the weekend’s historic election landslide.
In winning 48 percent of the vote, National became the first party to win an outright majority in Parliament under MMP. But New Zealand Educational Institute (NZEI) national secretary Paul Goulter says that doesn’t necessarily give them a mandate to implement the $359 million Investing in Educational Success (IES) scheme.
“I don’t think there could be any evidence at all to say that parents and communities and teachers in any way support it on the Monday after the election, compared to the Friday before the election. There’s just no evidence of that,” he said on Firstline this morning.
Mr Goulter says parents voted on “bread-and-butter matters”, not individual policies.
Under IES, expert teachers will get up to $20,000 extra pay, and principals up to $40,000. The catch is they would have to spend time away from their usual school to help out others the Government deems are struggling.
In August, 93 percent of NZEI members who took part in a vote on IES rejected it. Three-quarters wanted it dumped altogether, with the rest wanting it retooled.
Mr Goulter says the Government might have a mandate to push ahead with IES if it supplied evidence that it will actually improve educational outcomes.
“The evidence that they’ve bowled up so far is quite frankly pathetic,” he says. “As far as we’re concerned, things like mandates have to be subject to evidence and bringing parents and communities along, and that hasn’t happened.”