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Call off the education cuts

Written By: - Date published: 7:21 am, June 1st, 2012 - 17 comments
Categories: budget2012, education, Hekia parata, schools - Tags: ,

National has no choice but to call off the education cuts. The sooner they do it the sooner it will stop killing them in the court of public opinion. The education sector is united:

Sector revolts against teacher cuts

The Education Minister knew she had a fight on her hands – but now it is turning into a war.

The Association of Intermediate and Middle Schools says its relationship with the ministry has completely broken down, and in an unprecedented move, teachers, principals, trustees and parents are all preparing to fight her together, to stop cuts to teacher numbers.

Headlines like this are going to keep appearing:

Wellington school technology centre closing after cuts

The Government’s classroom cuts continue to hurt, with a Wellington intermediate school today telling parents it will be forced to close its technology centre, which serves 17 other Wellington schools.

Hekia Parata is under so much pressure over cutting teachers and increasing class sizes that she now can’t answer one simple question: will it cause school technology centres to close?

“We are focussing on raising quality,” is her only answer.

RNZ this morning reports children coming home in tears at news of potential technology class closures, and that The Maori Party and Peter Dunne are expressing concern (claiming they weren’t briefed, and starting to cite “no surprises” clauses). It won’t help that:

Key won’t rule out future school cuts

Intermediate schools have been saved from losing more than two teachers over the next three years, but Prime Minister John Key will not give an assurance that they will not face more severe cuts after that.

I have some skin in this game. For many years I’ve done voluntary activities in schools to promote technology education. How many of the teachers and the programmes that I’ve worked with are going to disappear? Promoting technology is clearly the right thing to do. Any country in its right mind will be focusing on MORE technology education, not LESS. But this is not, currently, a country in its right mind. National needs to ditch these stupid cuts now.

17 comments on “Call off the education cuts”

  1. Kotahi Tane Huna 1

    Do they care about public opinion? The purpose of this government is to transfer New Zealand resources and wealth to its clients.

    They will lose the election in 2014, and start up another campaign of hate-speech against the new government. They will rely on that hate-speech to return them to the Treasury benches. Then the cycle repeats.

    Public opinion has nothing to do with it except inasmuch as it can be emotionally manipulated.

    • Greg 1.1

      I just can’t believe some of the stuff on this site. I used to think that it was only right wingers who revelled in conspiracy theories but just a cursory glance around here shows that it’s actually you lefties who go for this stuff hook line and sinker.

      Who are these mysterious ‘clients’ of the government?

      And the ‘hate-speech’ thing! My god – have you read some of the comments on this site!

      I have never seen a site with so much bile personally directed at people. When I think back to the old Labour party – the Norm Kirk, Bill Rowling generation – and compare their gentlemanly demeanor with the outpourings on this site I’m just amazed at the degradation.

      • McFlock 1.1.1

        People can be rude on the internet? Thanks for the heads up.

      • bbfloyd 1.1.2

        you obviously need to get out of the house more……or is this the first blog site you’ve visited….??

        you probably already know this, but there are several blog sites in nz that make the standard look positively angelic in comparison….. but don’t let a little reality get in the way of some good old fashioned turd hurling….. country style ..

        fill yer boots young ‘un….

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    National needs to ditch these stupid cuts now.

    Nope, the more that NACT go round cutting and slashing now the more that the next left-government will be able to do to correct the balls up that is neo-liberalism. Renationalisation of the assets that NACT will sell and a few other natural monopolies and to put in place the necessary taxes that will be required.

    • Galeandra 2.1

      The neo-liberal Labour ‘left’ won’t renationalise anything if they win the treasury benches. They’ll be fully extended putting bandaids on the current crew’s disasters and won’t have enough cash to buy back at ‘market ‘ rates. Tax will stay much as it is – can’t have all the wealth creators jumping ship, you know.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1

        The neo-liberal Labour ‘left’ won’t renationalise anything if they win the treasury benches.

        That’s what would happen if we left it solely to the leaders of the left parties rather than pushing to get what we actually need.

  3. ianmac 3

    Anyone know exactly how this money saved will be spent on the 50,000 teachers to improve the quality in the foreseeable future? Inservice courses? Heart to heart chats? Caning bad teachers? Figuring out just what a good teacher is? Anyone?

    • Dv 3.1

      AND who is going to do the training?

      The ministry?

      They dumped the advisors in 2008.

      AND if performance pay is introduced, are you going to help the ‘poorer’ teachers improve to compete for your performance bonus,
      AND then may be improve the performance of the next door school so they can get attract your pupils

      Ian, you also make a good point about trust (heart on heart).

      The NACTS burnt a lot of good will when the Nat Stds were pushed through with urgency and Tolley would not talk to the teachers.

      And this change was ‘hidden’ in the budget too.

      Once burnt twice shy

    • bbfloyd 3.2

      Easy… the market dictates the true path….. create competition among teachers for performance bonuses… allow a limited amount to allocate for these bonuses, so that only a certain number can get it each term….

      the backstabbing that should ensue(assuming our teachers are only there for the money, of course)would be the perfect environment to introduce user pays education without any meaningful resistance……

  4. prism 4

    And following the cutting of night school classes, the NACTS narrow view of what is required for spending on education for other people’s children, is moving back to the three R’s reading, ‘riting and ‘rithmetic.

    No practical applied skills needed here, just the minimum required for an entry-level service industry. And a range of technology skills are only a start to the extended thinking needed to handle our 21st century confusions of directions and values. We need wider thinkers than ex-technology teacher Brownlee.

    What a NZ we’ve got already! And it will only get worse with NACTs acts. Draco TB looks at it as an opportunity for Labour to gain election, restore, improve, vitalise the many run-down policies. But first they have to restore and vitalise themselves. Or have they just painted the surface, without proper sanding of the decayed paint underneath. If that were so the new coat would soon crack and peel, we houseowners know about that. So let’s get some good workmanlike skills, learned perhaps at technology classes, on restoring the Labour party to a sound, useful party for the 90% that we can trust to do their job.

    • Galeandra 4.1

      Take the grinder to the Labour chisellers, for a start.

    • Treetop 4.2

      Three strikes now for National messing with education.

      1. Cut the Training Incentive Allowance apart from level 1 – 3 NCEA.
      2. Cut evening classes.
      3. Naive idea to save 43 million.

  5. higherstandard 5

    “For many years I’ve done voluntary activities in schools to promote technology education.”

    Well done.

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