Why the PPTA wants to snuff out Charter Schools: they work (too well)

Makes you sick to the stomach to know that a teachers union is dedicated to eradicating educational success to protect the average and the ineffective among its members – no matter the human cost

On the completed entry tests for next year’s intake of students at the Vanguard Military School, one of New Zealand’s first charter schools, there were plenty of 16 and 17 year olds who failed to spell ‚Äėencourage’, ‚Äėdescribe’, or ‚Äėnational’ correctly.

They couldn’t subtract 27 from 74. They didn’t even attempt to answer the simple division and multiplication questions.

Isaac Berry, 16, used to be one of those kids. Last year he only achieved 14 credits towards his level one NCEA. You need 80 credits to pass.

“I kind of forgot to go to school last year,” he said.

The talented BMX rider spent most of his time at the skate park. This year at the Vanguard school, Berry has discovered he also has academic talents. “It was when I got my first excellence I realised how far I could push myself,” he says.

Now he has 70 credits and is certain to to pass Level One NCEA.

I’ve been tracking the success of¬†Vanguard Military School since its inception, and if nothing else, if the kids can now spell “national” correctly, I can see why the PPTA would be unhappy! Read more »

Why doesn’t the PPTA solve this problem?

The PPTA are gearing up for a massive war against the government and Charter Schools.

They are going to expend massive union resources on just 5 or 6 schools they don’t like.

Meanwhile another teacher is deregistered after appearing before the courts.

A teacher has had her registration cancelled after failing to disclose a drink driving charge.

Louise Patricia Thomson first appeared before the Teacher Disciplinary Tribunal in June 2013 following traffic offences, including a drink driving offence.

At this hearing Ms Thomson failed to notify the tribunal of a further conviction for excess breath alcohol from 2012, the Teachers Disciplinary Tribunal has found. ¬† ¬† Read more »

PPTA gearing up for major anti-charter school move


Charter schools must be such a threat to teachers in New Zealand.  What are the numbers involved?

At 1 July 2013, the number of state and private schools in New Zealand was 2,539. This is 19 fewer than in July 2012.

Between 1 July 2012 and 1 July 2013, a total of 27 schools closed: Two state intermediates, 15 full primary state schools, four contributing state schools, one private composite, one state special school, and two state and two private secondary schools. Read more »

This is how the Teacher Unions get the answers they want


Not all teachers are rabid unionists.  Which is why I get told about these sorts of dirty tricks.

How many teachers would have voted NO on that? ¬†Seriously…

If you need a reminder on how questionnaires can be manipulated to get the result you want, here’s a classic Yes Prime Minister clip that explains it. ¬† Read more »

Parents not the Village Idiots Labour/Unions think they are

Labour and the teacher unions spend their whole time treating the parents of school age children like they have IQs lower than a jam sandwich.

Examples are ignoring the benefits of National Standards (they are going to ban them of course), telling families in challenges areas that they don’t want Charter Schools (they are going to ban them of course), telling parents they will save $100 on donations – while charging them $3.50 a week for a “device”, etc.

Parents have clearly also seen through the – slap a few more teachers in the classroom (wherever they come from) and she’ll be right approach too.

New Zealanders would rather money was spent on improving teaching standards than on reducing class sizes, a Herald-DigiPoll survey reveals.

Education has become a political battleground before September’s election, with both major parties promising to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on it.

Asked about their priorities, more than 60 per cent of those polled said they would spend money on trying to improve teaching standards rather than cutting class sizes.¬† Read more »

Performance pay for teachers: Has the time come?

Labour may have done their friends at the NZIE and PPTA a disservice. ¬†By pushing really hard for more teachers, 2000 of them in fact, and quoting smaller class sizes as being the major factor in student success, it turns out the public aren’t buying the argument

Newstalk ZB on-line poll

Newstalk ZB on-line poll

It appears to be that the voters can see that better teachers are the ones that produce better results, not just more average ones giving you ¬†3-4% more attention… that’s if you actually get an extra teacher, because 2000 teachers isn’t even one per school.

The left have been very successful at making certain phrases sound scary to voters, and “bulk funding” and “performance pay” are two of them.

This is why National are using the teachers’ award system against the unions. ¬† Read more »

Labour’s flagship education policy is stillborn

Labour are truly bereft of original ideas, and they keep going back to the standard:  spend more money to solve a problem.

As we’ve often said, because Labour make it so necessary to say it, if spending more money solved problems, we could spend ourselves into health, prosperity and zero unemployment.

We all know it doesn’t work that way.

On the face of it 2000 extra teachers sounds like a great idea, until you think it through. ¬†Forget the actual cost of it right now, that’s the least of the problems with this policy.

Where are these 2000 teachers coming from?

Teachers colleges turn out several hundred a year.  So Cunliffe says old, tired, disillusioned teachers are going to be attracted to the profession.   And he will be looking at immigrants.

Let’s break that down a little further. ¬†Teachers that have given up on teaching already will need to be “encouraged”, but the whole payment and reward system of the teaching profession is diametrically opposed to anyone being paid even once cent more than anyone else with the same qualifactions, experience and responsibilities.

So, they won’t be getting any more money. ¬†It flies against everything the teachers unions stand for. ¬†Equality in everything, and all that.

So if you aren’t going to be able to pay or reward these teachers for coming back, what form will Labour incentives take?

These teachers coming back are disillusioned or retired. How are they going to hit the ground running with iPads, chromebooks, WiFi Internet?

These teachers coming back are disillusioned or retired. How are their colleagues going to accept them?  How would you like to be perceived as a burnt-out, disillusioned, retired teacher that only came back for whatever Labour is going to use to incentivise them?

How are your colleagues going to treat you, knowing you walked away from them in the past? ¬†You rejected the profession then, what’s changed? ¬†A Labour bribe?
Read more »

ACT education policy may suit National as Parata wants more charter schools

Sophia Duckor-Jones at ZB reported

Education minister Hekia Parata says the government’s considering a second round of charter schools.

The comment comes after an announcement from the ACT Party which wants state schools to be able to elect to become a charter school.

Ms Parata says the government has commissioned an evaluation of the model before they can make any further decisions.

ACT’s policy won’t be popular with the PPTA – as it¬†is opt-in bulk funding by another name

ACT made the establishment of partnership schools a condition of its confidence and supply agreement with the National-led government, and it now wants to extend the policy.

Leader Jamie Whyte unveiled the party’s education policy in a speech today, saying all school boards should be able to opt out of control by the Ministry of Education and be bulk funded according to the number of students they attract.

“This policy entails no additional government spending,” he said.

Five partnership schools were opened this year and another five are expected to open in 2015.

“These few schools come under constant attack for being additional to the current stock of state schools and therefore reducing the funds available to them.

“The answer is to give all state schools the option of becoming partnership schools,” he said.

The policy will give teachers freedom to adapt their methods to their students and schools the freedom to innovate.

I wonder what ACT will take into any coalition talks as their number one policy.  It will probably be this one.


Tamati Coffey learns his lying from the best

Tamati Coffey is being taught the time honoured past-time of Labour politicians, lying like flat fish, by the absolute best at it…Sue Moroney, the woman in Labour who increases Nat MP majorities simply by standing against them.

He said he was still taking time to come to grips with being a candidate.

“I’ve been taken under the wing of people like Sue (Moroney) and Nanaia (Mahuta), they were there this morning and are helping me understand all of the problems going on regarding young people,” said Coffey.

He said education was the policy area that would likely tip the scales at the September election.

“It’s that thing we need to get right for the sake of all of these kids,” he said.

The official campaign period begins on June 20 and while Coffey has been on the hustings since he won the confidence of the party in March, he said policy was still weeks from being released.

“Nobody likes the Government’s current proposals to spend $350 million on education that’s not going to directly benefit the outcomes of children.”

Read more »

Waikato Times editorial slaps Hipkins too

Hipkins! ...eyes front and pay attention!

Hipkins! …cut the jibber jabber, eyes front and pay attention!

Chris Hipkins has tried to bag National Investing in Education Success (IES) plans as he goes about his ban-a-thon.

The Waikato Times have also acknowledged that he doesn’t know what he is talking about it and has failed to even notice the PPTA support.

Hipkins’ report card on Parata’s handling of the policy said a Labour Government would “almost certainly” dump it. Labour’s own model (to be announced within the next two weeks) would draw on teacher expertise to improve educational outcomes. But, according to the PPTA, that’s what Parata has done – and it welcomes the results.

Labour’s education spokesman, Chris Hipkins, has given Education Minister Hekia Parata a low mark for trying to introduce the expert teachers policy, “Investing in Educational Success”.

Because of the lack of input from school leaders, he said, she “has failed spectacularly” and “clearly needs to go back to school to learn what consultation actually means”. But perhaps Hipkins has failed to assess all the relevant material. Earlier this month, Parata released a report on the shaping of the $359 million policy to create a new career structure for teachers after consulting with the education sector.¬† Read more »