Partnership Schools

Te Ururoa Flavell calls out the teacher unions

Te Ururoa Flavell has called out the teacher unions who are boycotting a charter school in Whangarei.

Te Ururoa Flavell, Maori Party Co-Leader, has expressed disappointment at the influence of PPTA in advising Whangarei Boys High teachers to not teach students who attend Te Kura Hourua Te Kapeha Whetu.

‚ÄúAs I understand it the Board of Trustees at Whangarei Boys High was happy to support Kura Hourua students in specific areas such as the visual arts. That type of cooperation has been modelled in the relationships that many other kura establish with general schools, wananga, polytechnics and other education providers across New Zealand. It represents a dynamic relationship that we should surely be fostering in our communities ‚Äď that the education and learning of our students impacts on us all,‚ÄĚ says Te Ururoa Flavell, Maori Party Co-Leader.

‚ÄúI recognise that Partnership Schools is a major political issue and teachers have a right to their views on educational policy, but what about the kids? Surely we should be putting the best interests of our young people ahead of our politics.‚ÄĚ

‚ÄúI was a teacher for many years and I know that the profession prides itself on putting the interests of our children first, but this flies in the face of those values. I would have thought as teachers, that what matters is that every student experiences success. That‚Äôs what Te Kapeha Whetu want. That‚Äôs what the Maori Party wants. Come on PPTA ‚Äď surely there are other ways of making political statements that do not impact so immediately on our kids.‚Ä̬† Read more »

Unemployed teachers – there is a solution

Might be a job at a partnership school?

Hundreds of teachers are out of work as graduates fight for vacancies which can attract as many as 100 applications each.

A new Ministry of Education report on teacher supply shows jobs remain hard to come by.

Aucklander Rebecca Young, 40, has been looking throughout the country for a primary school job since graduating in May last year. At least 40 of her graduating class were in the same position, she said.

“I get letters that say my CV is fantastic, but it is just the high volume of applicants. I got a letter the other day saying I was one of 100, so it has come down a little bit, from 140 or 150.”

Ms Young is now looking overseas after sending in more than 80 applications for primary school posts.

However, both the Government and an education school say the situation has improved, and further relief is on the horizon as population growth increases the need for teachers.¬† Read more »

John Banks talks to Willie Jackson on Partnership schools

The PPTA are unhinging over Partnership schools.

Meanwhile the government and those involved are getting on with setting them up.

John Banks was on Radio Waatea with Willie Jackson and explains just precisely why he is implementing Partnership schools.

It is a wide ranging discussion and well worth listening to.

Read more »

Oh – this is what the teacher unions are worried about

The first New Zealand Charter/Partnership Schools are about to be authorised. The teacher unions have pedaled all kinds of nonsense about “no evidence” of demand or success overseas. In the US demand cannot keep up with supply…this is also from the Huffington Post a nice lefty site…so the teacher unions can hardly complain about the source for this.

There are 6,000 charter schools nationwide, more than 1,000 in California and upwards of 250 in Los Angeles.

It turns out, that’s not enough.

A report released¬†Thursday¬†by the National Alliance for Public Schools estimates that 520,000 students nationwide are on a charter school waiting list, including 50,000 kids in California hoping for a spot. ¬† Read more »

I bet he was registered

Another teacher is in court on sex charges.

The Labour party tells us that on order to protect children at Charter Schools all of the teachers should be registered. Apparently the mere act of registration serves to protect.

Since it is mandatory for current teachers to be registered it is highly likely that the teacher arrested and charged in Dunedin is/was registered:

A teacher accused of sexually abusing six students has pleaded not guilty and will face trial in March next year.

The man is facing 13 charges and has been granted name suppression to protect his former students.

The man appeared at the High Court at Auckland today where his lawyer Richard Earwaker entered not guilty pleas on his behalf.

The trial has been set down for eight days.¬† Read more »

Some Charter School effects the Unions are really worried about

The successful Charter Schools in the USA are changing the education landscape. Now other schools are having to adapt to their practices which means teachers working harder and longer days.

Carol R. Johnson, Boston school superintendent, has strived to build a collaborative relationship with charter schools, and she said she ­intends to review the report and identify any best practices that can be adopted by the city’s school system.

But she noted that many characteristics of charter schools, such as high expectations and extended days, are in place in several city schools, and she said she is eager to see that expand to all schools.

‚ÄúIn the highest-performing schools in Boston, we see similar results when those items are in place,‚ÄĚ Johnson said.¬† Read more »

Labour insists on registered teachers, but why?

Richard McGrath of the Libertarianz party issued a press release late last night about Labour’s insistence on having registered teachers.

It is telling and you really have to wonder at Chris Hipkins continuing to insist that the kids are safer with registered teachers.

Libertarianz leader Richard McGrath today voiced his support for the prospect of charter schools competing with their state counterparts, and said concerns by Labour MP Chris Hipkins about registration of teachers deserve to be explored further in the interests of child safety.
“Registered teacher James Parker admitted at least 74 charges of sexual offending against young boys. He is still on the register of teachers, and as such Chris Hipkins probably believes he is safe to be supervising children.”
“On¬†January 16¬†this year, registered teacher Douglas Haora Martin pleaded guilty to making upskirt videos of 17 unsuspecting young women and girls. Despite resigning from Lincoln High School on¬†January 24, the Teachers Council kept him on their register until¬†April 13. Chris Hipkins probably believes he was fit to be teaching schoolgirls during that time.”¬† Read more »

I bet he was registered

The various teacher unions all oppose charter schools on¬†the¬†basis that the government won’t require all of their teachers to be compulsorily¬†registered. They say it is to protect the kids.

Presumably this teacher was registered when he was setting a great example to his pupils:

A teacher at Broadgreen Intermediate School pierced his own ear with a safety pin, just days after students were told off for doing the same thing.

The Nelson Mail was contacted by Sue Brown who was concerned by reports that a teacher had pierced his own ear in front of 30 students last Thursday, and then filled the hole with a paper clip.

Ms Brown, who has a nephew and niece at the Stoke school, said students had been disciplined for similar behaviour the previous week. She has since returned to her teaching job in Australia.¬† Read more »

Truth says Maori Party President may support partnership schools at Education Select Committee

I have written at Truth’s website details about support of the Maori party for charter schools at the Education Select Committee this morning.

At the education select committee mid morning today, a Dr Toby Curtis, who is chairman of the Iwi Education Authority will be presenting to the Science and Education select committee.

Accompanying him is none other than Pem Bird, the Maori Party President and Ngai Tahu elder, who will be arguing in favour of partnership schools. Bird, according to his biography on the Maori Party website is an educationalist, awarded a QSM for services to Maori Education in 2008, by the then Labour government.
Despite union wailing and carping partnership schools looks like it is now a done deal.


Duff Talks Absolute Nonsense

It is a classic defensive tactic for people with an inherent interest in the failure of certain groups to protect their power through accusing others of doing what they specialise in.

PPTA relic Robin Duff writes an editorial in Herald on Charter Schools that first of all talks abject nonsense and then shifts the blame for educational failure to anywhere but his PPTA members.

Mr Duff begins with¬†clich√©s – “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” That happens to be a counter to the old – “If the PPTA is against it then it is probably a good thing for kids”.

Mr Duff then makes several baseless assertions re the success of one model of schooling – that currently runs 125 schools and has changed the pathways of 1000s of African American children for the good. Duff tries to cover himself with phrases like “tend to”, “magically”. With all due respect to Mr Duff the achievements of the KIPP schools make Mr Duff’s pale into insignificance. There are also plenty of other good models around the world that are doing things the one size fits all model the Duff advocates cannot do.

Without having been to a KIPP school Duff then makes completely unsupported assertions about what goes on there:¬†¬†”renowned for drilling and teaching to the test – again creating the impression that marks are improving, but whether there is any deep learning going on is a moot point.” Of course it is a moot point if you don’t bother to actually find out.

And how on earth would Duff know this:

“This battery-hen model of education is not what the charter school pushers would ever choose for their own children” – does he know to which schools the Charter School advocate send their children. Sure the NZ teachers that are represented by this lack of integrity must ask for Duff’s resignation.


“drawn by the profits to be made”. Here Duff must know he is not telling the truth as he surely must be aware most Charter Schools are not-for-profit.

Apart from the nonsense which people have come to expect – there is something more disturbing that the PPTA/NZEI have not yet answered. Why do they have an inherent interest in the sustained failure of Maori children? In this editorial Duff chastises the Maori Party for coming out in support of the Partnership Schools proposal. I mean – how dare they be so concerned that over 30% of Maori children are not achieving the basic numeracy and literacy qualifications? How dare the Maori party be concerned about the 20% differential to non-Maori at Level 2 NCEA. We have a “world class system”. How dare the Maori Party be keen to trial something new and work with interested groups in the community on it. Surely they know that their place is to listen to experts like Mr Duff – like Bob the Builder – he will…

Also disturbing is that Duff shifts all measurable responsibility from his part of the profession:

“Educational improvement is a long, hard road that requires perseverance in dealing not just with schools but with the range of economic, health, housing and welfare polices that impact on learning.”

In other words. I, Robin Duff, don’t like the Charter School idea as it may threaten my power base. I don’t have any other ideas and, anyway, it is not my/our fault, and don’t expect anything to change in the near future. Teachers aren’t idealists you know – they can only do so much….

Where is Duff right?

At one point only. To counter the unsubstantiated nonsense people like him are talking and, more importantly, because the children will be funded on a per child basis through the taxes their parents, and others pay – the process should be absolutely open to public scrutiny.