Logic Not His Strong Point

NZ Principals Federation (another form of union) new head Philip Harding is clearly as out of his depth as the new NZEI and PPTA leaders.

In this article Harding tries to make the point that there is no demand for Charter Schools for New Zealand families.

‘No one is calling for Charter schools,’ said Harding. ‘I don’t hear parents out there lobbying Government for Charter schools, the professional educators aren’t calling for them and the academics who have critiqued Charter schools’ performance overseas give them the thumbs down,’ he said.

‘I am concerned that we have yet another reform in front of us which, like increasing class sizes, has not been properly thought through and does not emanate from any sound evidence base for improving the education of Kiwi Kids,’ he said. 

Given that children will only attend these schools through choice logic dictates that Mr Harding doesn’t have a problem – i.e. no demand means no schools. If he is correct there won’t be any so he doesn’t need to waste time with nonsense press releases.

At least (although he probably doesn’t realising he is saying it) Harding has moved from the “world class” mantra by letting the world know some kids are not doing well in the union dominated system. Cat is well out of the back thanks to Mr Harding’s

“we can sanely explore ways to address the Government’s goal to improve learning outcomes for our struggling kids.”

Hmmm…those would be the kids struggling in the system he and his union refuses to change.


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  • Macca

    I think the old saying ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ needs to apply here.
    Well sorry teachers and unions alike, but it IS BROKE and it NEEDS FIXING so why not just swallow that big old rat, stop whining like a bunch of petulant children and just get on with it!

    • surfisup

      ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ … if it ain’t broke the teachers will break it with so called progressive learning techniques. Look at what they’ve done to maths education!!

  • niggly

    How racist and arrogant of Philip Harding to deliberately ignore calls from Maori and Pasifika community leaders supporting the need for Charter Schools. Philip Harding comes across like one of those “suppressing whitey colonialist MOFO’s” that the education system rallies against! Typical self-serving hypocritical Leftie!
    * * * * * * *
    Quote: “A prominent Maori educator says large numbers of Maori and Pasifika groups want to set up charter or partnership schools because they are desperate to improve their children’s education”.

    Even John Tamihere comes into bat for Charter Schools (no wonder why Labour wet panty waste liberals got their knickers in a knot when he suggested he might return to Labour)!

  • surfisup

    “‘I don’t hear parents out there lobbying Government for Charter schools, ”

    Unfortunately parents happen to work rather a lot. Unlike the teachers union, parents do not have significant time and money to protest about one thing or another.

    I support charter schools.

    Teachers hardly have some kind of superiority over learning matters when they are failing primary kids so badly at maths.

    • Patrick

      He only hears what he wants to. Comes from years of practice standing in a classroom.

    • Morrissey

      “Teachers hardly have some kind of superiority over learning matters..”

      Actually, they do.

      • johnbronkhorst

        NO…… they don’t!!!!!!!!!!

      • parorchestia

        Actually, they don’t. Very few keep up with the literature otherwise they wouldn’t come out with the things they do. Much of what they say has no foundation in research.

        • Morrissey

          You obviously have no idea about the teaching profession.

  • cows4me

    “I am concerned that we have yet another reform in front of us” , yeah I bet you are Philip. But I doubt that you are concerned more like scared shitless that charter schools will show you and your mates in a very dim light. Basically you’re full of it Philip, If you believe that the present system is that shit hot you should be welcoming charter schools with open arms, let the charter school promoters make damn fools of themselves, go on Philip I dare you. Of course that’s not going to happen is it Philip, the jig would be up.

  • johnbronkhorst

    Remember a show on tele, about 20 or so A+ students (at A level in the UK). Were put back into a school of the 1950’s. About 1/2 failed the course (including maths) and only one got her previous grade of A+. So, teachers have been IMPROVING education? ….BULLSHIT!!!

  • Gazzaw

    Let’s not write off the total teaching profession. Younger teachers are strongly in favour of the education initiatives including National Standards and charter schools. The majority are either not union members or are reluctant union members. Pressure from the ‘establishment’ starts early with sessions by union officials during teachers’ training. Lecturers are largely ‘establishment’. Principals and senior teachers are largely unionists – you get the drift? A young graduate needs a job (and they are scarce at the moment) and once securing one understandably want to advance themselves. It’s an impossible situation for them and many get frustrated and go and work in other fields or teach offshore. Either way many of our brightest and best young teachers are lost.

    The structure of teaching is quite unique. Is there any other industry where senior management are union members and openly support their employees to undertake industrial action?

    • peterwn

      Some years back a teacher told me (and she is a ‘good’ teacher) that the only reason she belonged to NZEI was for their support if she faced legal action or serious disciplinary charges through false complaints.

      • Gazzaw

        Agreed peter and that is a strong incentive. Specious complaints are becoming increasingly more common too and it’s an area that requires a teacher to have strong support from their principal in order to rebut those charges.

      • Yeah and how often does that happen? Fuck all if Ever

        • peterwn

          Agreed it very rarely happens, but has happened enough times that teachers need to take care, and this has been a significant factor in discouraging men from doing primary teaching. There was a case in Otago some years ago where two primary school girls were overheard discussing how they were going to ‘set up’ a male teacher. He promptly resigned and gave up teaching completely. Similarly I guess that most if not all cops (below Inspector) belong to the Police Association for the same sort of reason – and there are enough trashy charges laid against police officers to be a serious risk to them eg the private murder charge against Constable A of Waitara. If teachers, police officers etc could purchase insurance for this sort of thing, there would be less incentive to join unions for protection – however such insurance schemes could be frowned upon as being against the ‘public interest’.

  • johnbronkhorst

    “No one is calling for Charter schools,’ said Harding”…Really?? Poll on yahooxtra….28% would send their kids to a charter school!!! So 1 in 4 schools would need to be charter school, give people what they want……Hardly no one Mr harding.