Perry Rush and NZEI admit defeat

Via the tipline from a sensible principal.

BTAC – nothing but a front for NZEI and the Principals’ Federation – is admitting their protest against National Standards has failed.

Perry Rush tries to save face by saying they’ll be back in the new year to try and hide information from parents. But this shower of left-wing losers must know it’s all over, having been quietly strangled by Anne Tolley.

Now the unionists face three more unhappy years at the hands of a National Government, with the NZEI on course for yet more heavy defeats. Good riddance.

Boards Taking Action Coalition

Update September 6 2011

Attention Principals and Board Chairs

Dear Colleagues

Ministry of Education imposing targets – BTAC advice
There have been recent developments in relation to the National Standards issues.  Many Boards have provided Charters to the Ministry of Education, which the Ministry has advised are non-compliant.

Boards are now receiving letters in which the Ministry imposes targets on schools, and is requiring them to include these targets in their Charters.  The usual letter requires the Board to include in its Charter the following targets :

The school will collect base-line student achievement data against National Standards for all year levels for reading, writing and mathematics.
I am also requiring you to set an aim in your Charter to build the capability of your teachers to assess progress and achievement in relation to the National Standards.


Boards are being advised by the MOE that they are required to send in a Charter to this effect to the Ministry within a specified timeframe.

BTAC has taken legal advice in relation to this issue.  The legal advice is that the Ministry is NOT able to unilaterally amend a Charter without the consent of a Board, but can require a Board to amend a Charter and to include particular content by a particular date.

The Ministry appears to have written and imposed targets unilaterally stating that they become ‘active’ targets on a particular date. The only action required of the Board is to submit a copy of the charter with the imposed Ministry targets included.

Therefore, we believe the Ministry has overstepped the bounds of the legislation.

However, we are further advised that the Ministry has the statutory power and legal right to ultimately force their will on Boards with respect to this policy. Continued non-compliance can be met with statutory intervention. It is BTAC’s view that this outcome would be detrimental to the significant and growing community of concern about National Standards.

At this juncture, BTAC advises that forced compliance is the best strategy as it maintains the strong community of concern that can be brought to bear on these Standards. In addition it is a strategy that invites all Boards to register their concern without risking statutory intervention.

BTAC is not encouraging Boards to take a litigious approach at this time.  The real battle in relation to National Standards will come next year when schools are required to provide data to the Ministry of Education.  BTAC will continue to progress its opposition to National Standards, educate our school communities and the wider public as to the reasons for our opposition, and grow the community of concern. BTAC is currently working on a number of significant sector wide actions for 2012.

It is therefore suggested that Boards move to a strategy of ‘forced compliance’ by submitting a charter to the MOE which includes the imposed targets along with a disclaimer that makes it clear the Ministry’s targets are imposed.

The disclaimer should read: “These targets have been imposed by the Ministry of Education against the express wishes of the Board”.

Meanwhile, we will continue to communicate with you about strategies to continue to raise issues about National Standards, for the benefit of our school communities.

In summary BTAC advises Boards to respond by:

1)    Re-submitting your charter with the Ministry’s targets included in it so that it is clear it is imposed (as suggested above), and not agreed, by your Board or school community.
2)    Maintaining your trusted and reliable targets previously submitted and clearly differentiate these from the Ministry’s targets.
3)    Advising in a cover letter to the Ministry that the “imposed” charter targets as required by the Ministry does not reflect the wishes of the Board and the school community.
4)    Explaining to your school community that the Ministry has imposed requirements in relation to National Standards and that this is contrary to the wishes of the Board.

Perry Rush
Spokesperson
Boards Taking Action Coalition
[email protected]

 

 


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  • Birch

    Who are you whaleoil? So large and gruesome that you can’t show any sign of intelligence with regard to educational vision. I am sure you don’t have children – so sad that you are so unintelligent you are not able to give a rational argument FOR national standards.
    In 10 years time, all will look to the demise of the NZ school educational system via National Standards.

    • Boy I am glad my gifted children don’t have you associated with their education, Sarah.

    • Alex

      @ Birch demonstrating yet again that if someone dares question the teachers’ union, they are insulted and accused of being “unintelligent”. Your opposition has nothing to do with protecting education — you couldn’t care less — rather it’s about opposing a National-led government. Admit it, and then, at least, we ca admire your honesty.

    • Alex

      @ Birch demonstrating yet again that if someone dares question the teachers’ union, they are insulted and accused of being “unintelligent”. Your opposition has nothing to do with protecting education — you couldn’t care less — rather it’s about opposing a National-led government. Admit it, and then, at least, we can admire your honesty.

      There is one argument — and the only argument needed — in justification of National standards: it was in National’s manifesto and they got elected on account of it. They have a popular mandate given at the ballot box. The unions don’t.

    • Dion

      The rest of the workforce has their performance measured and reported on. Why not you?

      How’s that for rational?

    • thor42

      **I** can give a “rational argument” for national standards.
      The education system as it is is failing our children. Twenty percent of children in this country can’t read or write.
      Universities and employers are despairing at the poor quality of those coming out of our education system.
      Given this, it would be a **dereliction of duty** for the government to leave things as they are. It would be a dereliction of duty for the government to not try to improve the standard of education in this country.
      God only know, the teachers themselves have had long enough to do this, and they have FUCKED IT UP in a big way.
      This country NEEDS people who, when they come out of the school system, have a standard of education that is competitive with the rest of the world. Anyone who would deny this is a fool.
      So – given the above FACT – it makes complete sense for the government to ensure that the abilities of children in reading, writing and numeracy are measured and tracked over time. ( How the f**k else can improvement or failure be measured? )
      How do you see whether a child is failing in a given area? You draw up a set of guidelines – hey, let’s call them “standards” – which describe what could reasonably be expected of children at a given age. If little Jimmy or Mary is falling below those standards, then that suggests that extra attention is required, and the teacher needs to pull finger and do the work needed to help these children.
      To say that national standards are not required is to say that what we have now is “good enough”. BULLSHIT.
      It is **nowhere near** good enough. Twenty percent of children not being able to read is not good enough.
      TWO percent of children not being able to read would not be “good enough” either.

  • thor42

    What a bunch of losers these moaning principals and teachers are.
    They don’t give a damn about the education of the children. All they care about is protecting their own backsides and building a hiding-place away from the real world. I only wish that Tolley would scrap the teacher unions and bring in education vouchers and pay-for-performance.

  • notavictim

    ouch!! go whale.

  • richard r bruce

    stone me! at last some government has STARTED to do logical changes to our out of control education ”system”. If you must get a thing done first you set up a standard then you trial methods of solution against this standard no politics no emotion just do it. I suggest next move is to TEST TEACHERS to ensure ALL have standard grasp of basic Sight Sound Touch methods(& lots more)&rapport building skills to engage pupils. Strangely BOTH Teaching & the Psych Industries of NZ are decades behind in utilizing their own excellent world class achievers !How often has a teacher/counceller consultation made a solution to your child happen.?

  • Cal

    It is probably a waste of time posting here as I fully expect to be abused for not agreeing with you but there are interesting things raised in the responses to this post.

    I feel I have to put a disclaimer here before being shouted down as a Labour Activist – I am not politically aligned, I am not in education, I am just a parent.

    NOTE: My one tie in is that starting two months ago after I educated myself on National Standards, due to the threat faced to the school I chose for my daughter I created a website with information on National Standards. NZEI saw this and asked if I could answer parents’ questions. (That’s why I would like real answers from the “pro” side, ideally other parents with no political leanings so I can provide balanced responses).

    I haven’t heard anyone disagree that there is an issue with the gap between our top and bottom performers. I agree that it’s gone on to long with no focus. Restating the reason for National Standards doesn’t show how they will be fully addressed.

    Richard is right in good business practice you would set standards, trial methods, refine them and introduce them. This is where (from what I can see) the implementation of “National Standards” went off the rails.

    When launching National Standards with Anne Tolley, John Key was asked “Why not trial the standards” the response was “We don’t think it’s necessary”. The refusal to trial the standards, take open feedback and implement them following best practices has resulted in all of the resistance, confusion and collateral damage.

    I heard one of the board’s opposed to National Standards put their hand up as a school that would have been more than willing to trial the standards.

    Let’s not forget we have an education system that ranks very well in the OECD can we also blame our teachers for that.

    I made a choice for my daughter to attend a Steiner school.

    Steiner schools:
    – Have progressions for their children from lower to high school
    – Children are assessed internally against these progressions
    – Parents are informed and the gaps are addressed
    – Have progressions that don’t align with National Standards

    So as it stands according to the NAG’s and NEG’s Steiner schools have to assess against goals and targets that are nonsense for this educational model and then according to the NAG report these results to the children (As well as parents) so they know there next steps.

    John Key has said “Meeting your legal obligation can be saying to your parents, ‘Our children do not meet the National Standards for five and six-year-olds” but really where is the integrity in that, how does this help to address the supposed goals and what happens when the government decides that continuing to report as below national standards is not good enough and the model must be changed.

    Two months ago I knew nothing about NAG’s and NEG’s or National standards but now have lots of questions:
    – If the goal is to close the gaps why lift the bar and report more children as failing i.e. why base the standards on “Aspirational goals” rather than “Norms”
    – Why not follow best practice and trial the standards and work out the issues before applying them nationally.
    – How do you make “Overall Teacher Judgments’” the same nationally?
    – How do you ensure that by implementing blanket standards you don’t break what is working for many.
    – Could reporting have been improved to meet the needs of those parents that were concerned without telling everyone what to do?
    – Can’t you assess the Staff (Teachers) and not the customers (children)?
    – Where do we rank on education spending according to GDP within the OECD (I keep hearing we are below average but can’t find the facts to back this up)
    – If you have a proven system that doesn’t align with National Standards (Which parents agree with) why can’t you continue to use this?

    I am a parent that is trying to have an open debate on “National Standards”, obviously I am against this implementation, but am trying to present both sides at the website http://www.protect.org.nz. (A lot from the Steiner issue)

    If you can point out where I am misinformed, let me know. I have set up a “YouTube’ debate on the site with videos and links to both sides of the argument (Including Whaleoil) and plan to now set up a table of questions with answers from both sides.

    Let’s get away from politics, bullying, name calling and provide honest debate. Is there not room for those that want “National Standards” and those that don’t, if this is response to parents’ requests shouldn’t parents then have the choice? – A significant percentage of parents at my daughters’ school have demonstrated by writing to the school and board and insisting National Standards goals, targets and reporting aren’t used but rather the proven goals, targets and reporting model.

  • cal

    It is probably a waste of time posting here as I fully expect to be abused for not agreeing with you but there are interesting things raised in the responses to this post.

    I feel I have to put a disclaimer here before being shouted down as a Labour Activist – I am not politically aligned, I am not in education, I am just a parent.

    NOTE: My one tie in is that starting two months ago after I educated myself on National Standards, due to the threat faced to the school I chose for my daughter I created a website with information on National Standards. NZEI saw this and asked if I could answer parents’ questions. (That’s why I would like real answers from the “pro” side, ideally other parents with no political leanings so I can provide balanced responses).

    I haven’t heard anyone disagree that there is an issue with the gap between our top and bottom performers. I agree that it’s gone on to long with no focus. Restating the reason for National Standards doesn’t show how they will be fully addressed.

    Richard is right in good business practice you would set standards, trial methods, refine them and introduce them. This is where (from what I can see) the implementation of “National Standards” went off the rails.

    When launching National Standards with Anne Tolley, John Key was asked “Why not trial the standards” the response was “We don’t think it’s necessary”. The refusal to trial the standards, take open feedback and implement them following best practices has resulted in all of the resistance, confusion and collateral damage.

    I heard one of the board’s opposed to National Standards put their hand up as a school that would have been more than willing to trial the standards.

    Let’s not forget we have an education system that ranks very well in the OECD can we also blame our teachers for that.

    I made a choice for my daughter to attend a Steiner school.

    Steiner schools:
    – Have progressions for their children from lower to high school
    – Children are assessed internally against these progressions
    – Parents are informed and the gaps are addressed
    – Have progressions that don’t align with National Standards

    So as it stands according to the NAG’s and NEG’s Steiner schools have to assess against goals and targets that are nonsense for this educational model and then according to the NAG report these results to the children (As well as parents) so they know there next steps.

    John Key has said “Meeting your legal obligation can be saying to your parents, ‘Our children do not meet the National Standards for five and six-year-olds” but really where is the integrity in that, how does this help to address the supposed goals and what happens when the government decides that continuing to report as below national standards is not good enough and the model must be changed.

    Two months ago I knew nothing about NAG’s and NEG’s or National standards but now have lots of questions:
    – If the goal is to close the gaps why lift the bar and report more children as failing i.e. why base the standards on “Aspirational goals” rather than “Norms”
    – Why not follow best practice and trial the standards and work out the issues before applying them nationally.
    – How do you make “Overall Teacher Judgments’” the same nationally?
    – How do you ensure that by implementing blanket standards you don’t break what is working for many.
    – Could reporting have been improved to meet the needs of those parents that were concerned without telling everyone what to do?
    – Can’t you assess the Staff (Teachers) and not the customers (children)?
    – Where do we rank on education spending according to GDP within the OECD (I keep hearing we are below average but can’t find the facts to back this up)
    – If you have a proven system that doesn’t align with National Standards (Which parents agree with) why can’t you continue to use this?

    I am a parent that is trying to have an open debate on “National Standards”, obviously I am against this implementation, but am trying to present both sides at the website http://www.protect.org.nz. (A lot from the Steiner issue)

    If you can point out where I am misinformed, let me know. I have set up a “YouTube’ debate on the site with videos and links to both sides of the argument (Including Whaleoil) and plan to now set up a table of questions with answers from both sides.

    Let’s get away from politics, bullying, name calling and provide honest debate. Is there not room for those that want “National Standards” and those that don’t, if this is response to parents’ requests shouldn’t parents then have the choice? – A significant percentage of parents at my daughters’ school have demonstrated by writing to the school and board and insisting National Standards goals, targets and reporting aren’t used but rather the proven Steiner goals, targets and reporting.

  • Cal

    It is probably a waste of time posting here as I fully expect to be abused for not agreeing with you but there are interesting things raised in the responses to this post.

    I feel I have to put a disclaimer here before being shouted down as a Labour Activist – I am not politically aligned, I am not in education, I am just a parent.

    NOTE: My one tie in is that starting two months ago after I educated myself on National Standards, due to the threat faced to the school I chose for my daughter I created a website with information on National Standards. NZEI saw this and asked if I could answer parents’ questions. (That’s why I would like real answers from the “pro” side, ideally other parents with no political leanings so I can provide balanced responses).

    I haven’t heard anyone disagree that there is an issue with the gap between our top and bottom performers. I agree that it’s gone on to long with no focus. Restating the reason for National Standards doesn’t show how they will be fully addressed.

    Richard is right in good business practice you would set standards, trial methods, refine them and introduce them. This is where (from what I can see) the implementation of “National Standards” went off the rails.

    When launching National Standards with Anne Tolley, John Key was asked “Why not trial the standards” the response was “We don’t think it’s necessary”. The refusal to trial the standards, take open feedback and implement them following best practices has resulted in all of the resistance, confusion and collateral damage.

    I heard one of the board’s opposed to National Standards put their hand up as a school that would have been more than willing to trial the standards.

    Let’s not forget we have an education system that ranks very well in the OECD can we also blame our teachers for that.

    I made a choice for my daughter to attend a Steiner school.

    Steiner schools:
    – Have progressions for their children from lower to high school
    – Children are assessed internally against these progressions
    – Parents are informed and the gaps are addressed
    – Have progressions that don’t align with National Standards

    So as it stands according to the NAG’s and NEG’s Steiner schools have to assess against goals and targets that are nonsense for this educational model and then according to the NAG report these results to the children (As well as parents) so they know there next steps.

    John Key has said “Meeting your legal obligation can be saying to your parents, ‘Our children do not meet the National Standards for five and six-year-olds” but really where is the integrity in that, how does this help to address the supposed goals and what happens when the government decides that continuing to report as below national standards is not good enough and the model must be changed.

    Two months ago I knew nothing about NAG’s and NEG’s or National standards but now have lots of questions:
    – If the goal is to close the gaps why lift the bar and report more children as failing i.e. why base the standards on “Aspirational goals” rather than “Norms”
    – Why not follow best practice and trial the standards and work out the issues before applying them nationally.
    – How do you make “Overall Teacher Judgments’” the same nationally?
    – How do you ensure that by implementing blanket standards you don’t break what is working for many.
    – Could reporting have been improved to meet the needs of those parents that were concerned without telling everyone what to do?
    – Can’t you assess the Staff (Teachers) and not the customers (children)?
    – Where do we rank on education spending according to GDP within the OECD (I keep hearing we are below average but can’t find the facts to back this up)
    – If you have a proven system that doesn’t align with National Standards (Which parents agree with) why can’t you continue to use this?

    I am a parent that is trying to have an open debate on “National Standards”, obviously I am against this implementation, but am trying to present both sides at the website. (A lot from the Steiner issue, but this highlights the issues with a one size fits all, un-trialed policy)

    If you can point out where I am misinformed, let me know. I have set up a “YouTube’ debate on the site with videos and links to both sides of the argument (Including Whaleoil) and plan to now set up a table of questions with answers from both sides.

    Let’s get away from politics, bullying, name calling and provide honest debate (tell me what you think Perry Rush is hiding?). Is there not room for those that want “National Standards” and those that don’t, if this is response to parents’ requests shouldn’t parents then have the choice? – A significant percentage of parents at my daughters’ school have demonstrated by writing to the school and board and insisting National Standards goals, targets and reporting aren’t used but rather the proven Steiner goals, targets and reporting.

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