Charter Schools do better with the kids the policy is aimed at

In New Zealand the Charter School policy is aimed at helping the long tail which is predominantly made up of Maori and Pasifika students – more typically in lower socioeconomic situations.

The NY Times has this kind of thing to say about the effects of Charter Schools for this type of group:

Charter schools are controversial. But are they good for education? Rigorous research suggests that the answer is yes for an important, underserved group: low-income, nonwhite students in urban areas. These children tend to do better if enrolled in charter schools instead of traditional public schools.

A consistent pattern has emerged from this research. In urban areas, where students are overwhelmingly low-achieving, poor and nonwhite, charter schools tend to do better than other public schools in improving student achievement.

Charter schools in Boston produced huge gains in test scores. A majority of students at Boston’s charters are African-American and poor. Their score gains are large enough to reduce the black-white score gap in Boston’s middle schools by two-thirds. Boston’s charters also do a better job at preparing students for college.

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$47,000 per student why aren’t the Teacher Unions outraged?



The PPTA in particular loves to compare apples with pears in an attempt to show that Charter Schools are funded more per student than State schools. This is not actually the case as we have shown in past articles.
The cold hard facts have not stopped both Labour and Teacher Unions  from complaining that Charter Schools are expensive at less than $4000 set up per student.In contrast State Schools are massively expensive. There has just been a refurbishment and redevelopment (i.e. not even a land purchase or initial building) for Western Springs College of $80 million. That works out at $47,000 per student.
Are you as a taxpayer happy with this comparison? Why is the PPTA silent about this? Could it be that they are like Kelvin Davis who only attacks privately run prisons and ignores the problems in State run prisons?

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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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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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Principals tell government to close or merge small schools


Pakuranga College principal Mike Williams: “This investment has to be done properly.” Photo: RNZ/John Gerritsen

With school Principals saying that the government should be shutting down or merging schools in the face of multi-billion dollar problems with school property their comments only reinforce the Charter School model. The schools that I visited in my investigative series leased their premises. They faced none of the issues that small state schools currently face regarding ongoing maintenance costs. Charter schools don’t have to build new libraries or maintain sports fields as they use the local library and public sport fields.

Principals told Radio New Zealand’s Insight programme that earthquake strengthening, leaky buildings and roll growth meant there was not enough property funding to go around, even though the government was expected to spend $6 billion over next 10 years addressing the issues.

With money short, they said, the government should consider closing schools instead of fixing them.

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PPTA backs down on external exams

The PPTA has caved over external exams but they have actually just shifted focus to oppose NCEA again, once their scam opposition to external exams threatened to undermine their previous positions on NCEA.

The secondary teachers union will drop a proposed move to ban foreign qualifications, saying it was proving a “distraction” from the real issues around NCEA.

A Post-Primary Teachers’ Association paper titled “The NCEA: Can it be saved” previously included lobbying for a ban of Cambridge and International Baccalaureate, alongside a series of other recommendations around how to ensure NCEA remained workable and robust.

The proposed ban has been hotly debated since it was raised, with NCEA supporters arguing foreign examinations undermined our local qualification, while Cambridge supporters argued its system was more robust, and there needed to be a choice.    Read more »

Actually it is exactly like Apartheid

Minister of Education Hekia Parata

Minister of Education Hekia Parata

Minister of Education Hekia Parata has been criticised for comparing the PPTA ban on Charter School staff and students with Apartheid. One lone person walked out when she made the comments during a speech and now a storm in a teacup has ensued.

Image result for Apartheid.

Image- huffingtonpost.com

Apartheid means the state of being apart, literally apart-hood. It is all about segregation based on discrimination which is exactly what the PPTA is pushing. They happily admit that they are discriminating based on who a person works for or is taught by. They want to have nothing to do with Charter Schools to the extent of even preventing Charter School students from taking part in sporting or cultural events with students from PPTA controlled schools.
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image -teachdocumentary.com

Like Whites who believed that they were superior to Blacks or who feared them and wanted them kept away from them, the PPTA believes that State education is the only acceptable education while simultaneously fearing the changes Charter Schools might bring to education.

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How close is the PPTA and the Education reporter for A Newspaper?

This close.

Media Party Education spokesperson Kirsty Johnston and PPTA Advisory Officer Tom Haig are chatty on twitter.

On the 21st

Screenshot twitter -Whaleoil.co.nz

Screenshot twitter -Whaleoil.co.nz

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UK PM David Cameron loves Charter Schools

In the UK Charter schools are called ‘Free schools.’ I wonder if the free refers to being free of meddling Education Unions?

David Cameron

David Cameron

The Government’s commitment to open 500 free schools over the next five years will create 270,000 school places across the country.

…Prime Minister David Cameron said: “As a One Nation Government we are clear that every family should have access to a great local school and every child should get the very best education – and free schools are a crucial part of that aim.
…The 18 new schools announced today include a number that will be set up by teachers themselves, showing the programme is putting power back in the hands of those who know children best.

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A newspaper editorial ticks off the PPTA

A newspaper has an editorial this morning that gently ticks off the PPTA. It clearly wasn’t written by Kirsty Johnson.

The secondary teachers’ union has welcomed one Auckland school’s decision to abandon international examinations and offer only the NCEA. The Post Primary Teachers’ Association would like to ban schools using the International Baccalaureate and the Cambridge exams entirely, believing they undermine our homegrown educational credentials for school leavers.

It is concerned that schools offering the alternatives tend to imply the national qualification as not sufficiently challenging and lacking credibility. But it also blames the Government for using the NCEA to set national achievement targets as a measure of the return on educational investment. The union says the targets encourage “credit farming”, by which it means schools siphon students into courses that offer the most credits, though they might not be the courses the students need most. A paper circulated by the PPTA claims students “seek out courses which are perceived to deliver the most credits for the least effort”.

This is a concern if true. But it seems not to have occurred to the union that its portrayal of “credit farming” in the NCEA also reinforces the very perceptions it resents. The public should be insisting the PPTA’s members – who are professionals, as it often reminds us – do their utmost to encourage students to take courses that let them reach their educational potential.

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