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Class sizes don’t matter?

Written By: - Date published: 8:06 am, June 2nd, 2012 - 44 comments
Categories: class war, education, john key - Tags:

44 comments on “Class sizes don’t matter?”

  1. Carol 1

    Gone viral!

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10810207

    The Prime Minister told the Listener he sent his children to private schools for educational reasons, including smaller classes and better resources.

    It was not a direct quote, but a picture of Mr Key with the comment alongside was posted on Facebook yesterday and by last night had appeared on numerous blogs and been shared by more than 6000 people.

    Comments about it included labelling Mr Key a hypocrite for arguing now that increasing class sizes in the state sector would not affect standards of education.

  2. seeker 2

    Almost a direct quote

    “Mostly, he says, that decision was for educational reasons. Their schools have smaller classes and are better resourced than most state schools. ”

    http://www.listener.co.nz/commentary/show-a-bit-of-class/

  3. Bill English’s budget has caused a lot of upset in the education world. Intermediate schools; their teachers and the parents of the students who go to them, were dismayed to find that huge cuts were to be made to teaching staff and to the practical subjects offered. What reason could there be for such severe cuts to Intermediate schools? National has for a long time now, pushed the idea that bigger classes are better, that crowding children into a classroom will help their learning. Children at State schools that is. Not those going to private schools, where many of the politicians own children go. At the private schools, parents are promised small class sizes and the benefits that come from the extra attention their child will receive as a result. What I find difficult to understand, is how the Government can say two different things and expect us to believe them. Small is good for their children, but big is good for ours. I don’t believe them.

    Robert Guyton

    http://robertguyton.blogspot.co.nz/2012/06/i-wrote-letter-to-editor.html

    • Bill 3.1

      “Small is good for their children, but big is good for ours.”

      🙂 Privatisation is good for all people who want to make a buck. Our children, their children, all children…fair game. Now, whatyamean you’re a wee bit poor and can’t afford to send you’re child to one of the ‘more efficient by outcomes’ schools? You been making ‘bad life choices’ there? Oh well, them’s the breaks. Can’t have your bad choices and tall poppy syndrome ruining it* for the rest of us**, can we***?

      [* our opportunity to make dosh]
      [**mythical and all inclusive ‘us’ with the exception of you know who]
      [***the real ‘us’…us with the dosh and the itchy palms]

    • seeker 3.2

      I think Gabriel Makhlouf opined a great deal about class size,’master teachers’ and tradeoffs in March 2012.http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/media-speeches/speeches/economicleadership
      He should have stuck to what he had some knowledge of rather than fraudently trying to enter and pontificate upon the specialised world of Education by (ab)using his position of CEO of the national piggybank. We all know how the government listens to the treasury! The blind leading the blind.

      • DH 3.2.1

        It’s like being a fly on the wall at the mad hatters tea party. They bring in an import from a country in a worse financial state than we’re in and he has the gall to preach to us about education!

        They can’t even do their maths properly at Treasury. Anyone who has spent even five minutes talking to NZ teachers would know that an increased class size leads directly to an increase in their workload. That’s more marking, more assessment, more preparation, more parents to coddle etc etc.

        Teachers are going to demand compensation for the extra time, it may only translate into a few percent but that will negate any savings made from reducing teacher numbers. The next few rounds of teacher pay talks will almost certainly include demands for extra pay to cover the increased workload.

        Once again ideology trumps common sense.

    • Andy 3.3

      Read your Orwell. It’s called doublethink. Ignorance is strength.

  4. DS 4

    Don’t forget that private schools don’t have to jump through the unnecessary hoops involved with National Standards. The parents and presumably employers are quite content with the label of “private school”.
    Or that “smaller classes” can be part of the special character of private schools when they ask to be integrated.

  5. Brian 5

    I’m with you on this one John – sending your kids to school for “educational reasons” is definitely the best course of action.

  6. Nick K 6

    Mostly, he says, that decision was for educational reasons. Their schools have smaller classes and are better resourced than most state schools.

    The first sentence is a quote from Key. But the second isn’t.

    • North 6.1

      Nick K……..seems Key HAS NOT DENIED that he identified smaller class sizes and/or better resources as “educational reasons” why his kids were at private schools ?

      If he does not then we have on the table a direct reporting of his “……reasons”.

      So, until he does deny (in which case Listener writer Joanne Black’s interview notes/recollections would need to be consulted) I can only see your assertion above as a nervous spray of bullshit occasioned by the searing embarrassment you are feeling.

      Your idol has clay feet and the perpetual dribble spin which trickles down is washing them away ?

    • Penny Bright 6.2

      Browsing: Home / Commentary / Show a bit of class
      Show a bit of class
      By JOANNE BLACK | Published on May 28, 2005 | Issue 3394

      ” ……………..
      It might be sick, but it also might be why Key’s children – Stephanie, 12, and Max, 10 – go to private schools. Mostly, he says, that decision was for educational reasons. Their schools have smaller classes and are better resourced than most state schools. But he acknowledges that the connections children make are also important”

      THAT is the quote from the Listener article.

      Penny Bright
      ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

      http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

      • Puddleglum 6.2.1

        Thanks Penny.

        That seems to clear up the issue of whether or not the second sentence summarised his stated reasons. The third sentence reveals that, discursively, he was trying to avoid the accusation that he was sending his children to private schools so that they would make connections with the sons and daughters of the elite.

        By emphasising their ‘educational’ advantages, he was avoiding what he (then) saw as the more damaging, elitist implication of his decision to send his children to private schools. That is, trying to emphasise the ‘what you know’ NOT ‘Who you know’ advantages of private schooling.

        After all, he enjoys his reputation of being an ‘ordinary New Zealander’ and preserving that public view of him would have been paramount at the time.

    • redman 6.3

      Then let Key come out and say he would be happy for his kids to be in a class with 30+ kids in it, no teacher aid and one teacher.

      Lets see that statement from the PM.

  7. millsy 7

    Private schools exist only because parents dont want their precious little darlings to mix with dirty poor or brown kids. Nothing else. Unless those dirty poor/brown kids are good front-rowers for the first XV mind you..those Korean calculus whizzes make the test scores look good, but wouldnt know a scrum from a ruck.

    The increasing tendency for parents to send their children to wealthier private schools across town contributes to an ever incresing social stratification in this country.

    Back when I was a child, enjoying the blissful innocence of childhood oblivious to the unfolding chaos that was Rogernomics, my parents, sent me to a primary school and kindergarten that bordered a huge Housing Corp estate, known for its gang violence, etc, as did a lot of parents from that area, though my auntie and uncle, who lived just down the road, sent my cousin to a school in a more respectable area. Back then, even in the mid to late 1980’s parents didnt break their necks to send their kids to private school like they do now. And that primary school wasant a really bad school, it had some awesome teachers, and a principal who would personally visit the sick bay if a child was there to see if they were OK.

    Now I have at least 2 people from my work who live near that school who send their children to posh Catholic schools across town. No dirty poor kids for those darlings.

    As for class sizes, I really dont get why people think class sizes dont matter. I found that it was way easier to learn in a class size of 10-15, rather than a class size of 30-35, and that is right up to when I finished my degree.

    • Murray Olsen 7.1

      Spot on. It’s all about creating and demarcating an upper class in our “classless” Erewhon. The rulers who know all the right (wing) people and the ruled who get enough education to attend compulsory WINZ interviews where they’re probed, harassed and threatened. If they’re really lucky and not too brown, some of them might even get enough training to be waiters at the new Sky City Convention Centre on the odd occasion that someone has a convention there.

      • Puddleglum 7.1.1

        Hi Murray,

        Just wanted to say that is a very well-crafted comment. There are more insightful points – and implied points – in those few sentences than in many a long thread.

        Much appreciated! 

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.2

        some of them might even get enough training to be waiters at the new Sky City Convention Centre on the odd occasion that someone has a convention there.

        I’m sure John Key has promised to hold lots of tax payer funded events there.

  8. Wyndham 8

    The hypocrisy is further compounded by the fact that Key and Co. voted $35 million from the taxpayer to support private schools. No “user pays” dogma there.

    How do they get away with this stuff?

  9. ianmac 9

    Remember that it is not just Intermediates that will be hurt. Fabregas4 wrote a piece a few days ago showing how his 4/5 teacher contributing school will be seriously affected. At least 20? more kids than previously would be needed to get his 5th teacher. Can’t find his post. The Technology Centres are just a very public part of a very serious threat to younger kids.

  10. Dv 10

    Ianmac
    Here are a couple of examples I have found of the effects of class size.
    Thw key is the need for class sizes of 40 in some classes.
    I am absolutely positive the reseach did NOT model classes of this magnitude.
    It is these numbers that need to be kept to the fore.
    We need more example.

    Both are from teachers/principals

    BOTH have classes of over 40 in the new model.

    Example One
    Now
    Year 1 18 children (recommended 15) 18
    Year 2 22 24
    Year 3 22 (Beginning Teacher)
    Year 4/5 26
    Year 6 28

    We still have new entrants to come which will lift us to around 123 children by the end of the year. We are funded for 5 teachers after child 101, the 6th at 126.

    New
    After changes we will be funded for teacher 4 at 97.5 – the 5th at 125 – the 6th at 153.5.’

    So if we hit 123 children at years end we still would not qualify to be fully funded for teacher 5 meaning classes like this
    Year 1 18
    Year 2 24 (can’t in all conscience go higher for 6 year olds)
    Year 3 40
    Year 4/5 41

    Example 2
    1 teacher at my school is 20% of teachers! At each years end I have around 120 children. If I place 15 children in Year 1, then the balance of 105 children must be fitted within three classrooms. Quite frankly 27.5 children is too many in a Year 2 class – especially a rural, decile 1, 88% Maori school. So if I place say 24 in this room I have two classes of 40 left!

    • burt 10.1

      DV

      It would seem that in your example ‘bulk funding’ would probably produce better outcomes. How ironic is that.

      • ianmac 10.1.1

        I have a sneaking suspicion Burt that Bulk Funding will be on the Agenda and might well be behind the current pressure on Teaching. “Twist and screw them teechers so that a dose of Bulk Funding will be accepted.”
        Of course the money has to come from somewhere. Save money by increasing class sizes so that the money via BFunding can be spent by Schools to reduce class sizes. Brilliant!

    • North 10.2

      That’s why the liars are now casting the debate in terms of “maximum staff loss = 2 teachers”.

      It conceals in Ianmac’s example that in 40% of his school’s classes the pupil numbers will rise from 24 to 40 – a massive increase of 66%, just to hold ground in the other classes. Forget about your at first blush, seemingly innocuous “2”.

      It’s rank dishonesty anyway to bandy about any figure in a vaccum as they do with this “2” business.

      Be ready to be defamed and abused as incompetents when you can’t do the impossible teachers.

      Key and that Flash Potato Parata (Maori when it suits her but kupapa otherwise) are certainly King Canute when the prescriptions they invent fall to be met by others.

      They are disgusting, dishonest people (as confirmed by Key’s “educational reasons……”) who richly deserve from the public the exact same measure of contempt they offer to the public.

    • ianmac 10.3

      Thanks for that Dv. Have bookmarked this page because it should be a major issue and numbers are facts. Will publish in our local paper.

      • Dv 10.3.1

        Ian mac, the projected class sizes should be collected AND published across the country.

        burt, you are right. This could a trojan horse for bulk funding, but that has been clear fpr a while.

      • ianmac 10.3.2

        Have posted my letter to Editor using both sets of figures thanks DV and Fabregas4.

  11. burt 11

    I’m not actually surprised that this is posted with an author of ‘the standard’. I once questioned Mallard face to face on why his children didn’t go to their in zone school. His answer was quick and decisive – Don’t you dare bring my own family into a political discussion.

    Who put this post up, who’s going to put their name to it ? If it’s nobody then how about we also discuss why when Mallard supported school zoning as a policy for others his own kids were transported out of zone for schooling.

    All that aside. I think that as long as we have a state one size fits all school system for the masses that MPs should use it for their children. If they say it’s good enough for everyone else then they should eat it too. The same goes for the state health system – how many MP (from any party) have private medical insurance? How many of their kids wait 2-3 years for tonsillectomy etc.

    They need to eat their own dog food!

    • Dv 11.1

      Burt, I agree with the basic tennant of your comment, that MPs should have to live in the society they create.

    • millsy 11.2

      “The same goes for the state health system – how many MP (from any party) have private medical insurance? How many of their kids wait 2-3 years for tonsillectomy etc.”

      Probably why I wasant too keen on Cunliffe becoming Labour Leader. He said in a 2008 interview he had private health insurance.

      • Vicky32 11.2.1

        How many of their kids wait 2-3 years for tonsillectomy etc.”

        Burt, do you even understand why kids wait that long? In the early 1990s, my son had frequent bouts of ear infection and tonsillitis, and it was explained to me, that in contrast to my own youth, doctors now prefer to avoid tonsillectomies if at all possible. I was told that L., could have a tonsillectomy if and only if he had three bouts of infection within one calendar year – and he never did.
        Tonsils are now known to be an essential part of the immune system, and should never be removed until it’s absolutely necessary.

    • North 11.3

      Oh, the old diversionary chestnut from Burt……..”don’t bring my family into it.”

      Remember that in this issue Key is “bringing into it…….” every family in New Zealand with a child who will end up in an increased numbers classroom. What’s more he is engaging what amount to falsehoods to get the job done.

      If that in itself is not good enough to justify comment about Key being free to avail optimum educational circumstances for his family then his hypocrisy and his “Let them eat cake…” pose on class size, as evidenced by the picture and accompanying text above, certainly is.

      Strange though Burt that after blowing a valve about dissemination of the picture and text above you do for all money denounce Let Them Eat Cake Key’s going private by saying he shouldn’t be free engage that choice in the first place.

      I guess you’re terribly conflicted – a primal urge to engage apologism – fighting a searing embarrassment – fighting what might well be a vague shred of socialist principle.

      Have a cuppa and a lie down bro’.

    • Puddleglum 11.4

      Hi burt,

      I agree that MPs should take the consequences of the general policy decisions they make.

      As for ‘bringing his children into it’, I really don’t see it as a point about his children. I thought the point of raising this quotation was to show that Key’s stated beliefs about the educational value of small class sizes undercuts the claim that increasing class sizes (as a matter of explicit policy) will not effect the quality of children’s education.

      Whether in fact it does or doesn’t is not the point. It’s clear that, at least in 2005, Key believed that class size matters. Has he changed his view? If so, would he now caution people against paying money to have their children attend private schools on the ‘false’ belief that smaller classes were educationally helpful?

  12. Penny Bright 12

    Looks like John Key is going to be forced to do a big fat ‘U turn’ on increasing class sizes?

    Nearly 9000 Facebook ‘shares’ (as at 11.30am Saturday 2 June 2012)

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151003966976477&set=a.207470516476.164174.568131476&type=1&theater

    HYPOCRITE! SHONKY JOHN KEY! http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10810207

    Kiwi DIY ingenuity! An innovative way of coping with increasing class sizes…..

    http://www.trademe.co.nz/building-renovation/fixtures-fittings/handles-levers/auction-480723906.htm

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

  13. weka 13

    Would someone from TS mind clarifying whose image that is in the post? With The Listener header it looks like it’s something from The Listener. I’m assuming it’s not, but it’s a bit confusing at first, and even second glance. If it’s something someone at TS made, can you please credit it as such? (I mean credit it to TS, not necessarily an individual).
     
    It’s a good image. I just think this is another case of TS not being clear enough about who is the author of what. If people want to use that image elsewhere, it would be good if they knew who to credit it to.

    • Penny Bright 13.1

      Here you go Weka!

      “Would someone from TS mind clarifying whose image that is in the post? With The Listener header it looks like it’s something from The Listener. I’m assuming it’s not, but it’s a bit confusing at first, and even second glance. If it’s something someone at TS made, can you please credit it as such? (I mean credit it to TS, not necessarily an individual).

      It’s a good image. I just think this is another case of TS not being clear enough about who is the author of what. If people want to use that image elsewhere, it would be good if they knew who to credit it to.”

      TO WHOM TO GIVE CREDIT:

      http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151003966976477&set=a.207470516476.164174.568131476&type=1&theater

      Chris Glen

      So Mr Key, bigger classes are OK for kids from average NZ families who can’t afford private schools?

      Please SHARE on your Wall, your friends Walls and in your Groups.
      We all know about the ‘real John Key’, lets make sure others do too.

      This graphic was produced for Action for Good by me and not by the NZ Listener. Their logo is used as John Key’s remarks appeared in an interview published in the magazine in May 2005.

      John Key’s remarks sourced from: NZ Listener, May 28, 2005.
      http://www.listener.co.nz/commentary/show-a-bit-of-class/

      Photo Source: http://www.kingscollege.school.nz/gallery2/main.php?g2_itemId=26649

      ____________________________________________________________________________

      Penny Bright
      ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’
      http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

  14. redman 14

    How typical of Key and his 2 faced scummy party. One rule for the plebs and another rule for him and his buddies.

    I see Whale Oil is saying the left are lying, making the quote up out of what Key actually said. Well here’s a question for Key then, would he be happy to keep his kids at their private schools, AND increase the numbers in those private classes to 30+ kids?

    Lets see a quote from Key to that question.

    • North 14.1

      Of course Key’s not here is he………fortuitously off to be Her Majesty’s most simpering and loyal servant at the Court of St James.

      Potato Parata must be ropeable. She’s conquered “Slap the Lippy”, got a handsome pass in “Hire the Limo”, here she is halfway through the “Smile and Wave” section of John Key 101, and blow me down the guy buggers off to mince and tap his way across the Buck House stage.

      Looks like a fail for Potato and a much flasher photo gallery on the prime ministerial Iphone.

      Joking aside – with heavy darts positively flying at home and remaining integrity and honour seminally at risk, Key should have been able, from London, to deny the “educational reasons…….” attributed to him. Were they deniable.

      He hasn’t. Bets on another case of Springbok Tour can’t remember durrrhh………? Or is the underlying hubris now so ingrained that he really don’t give a stuff ?

      I’ll be very hoha if Her Majesty gets a little too tipsy over the weekend and starts wavin’ that sword around. Nek minnit an impromptu job lot of unplanned knighthoods. Can’t you just see it ?; Key shoulder-charging people out of the way to fall under that sword.

  15. NattyM 15

    If class sizes don’t matter and the government really needs to cut costs, the next logical step is to cut public funding to private schools so that they too increase class sizes.

    • Dv 15.1

      WHY are private schools being penalised from getting the bests result for their pupils by having small classes?

      THIS is disgraceful and must not be tolerated.

      • mike e 15.1.1

        dv ant yes your understanding as those of your elitist cohorts will mean we will slip further down the economic ladder as a nation.So you are saying that large class sizes shouldn’t be tolerated at all even in public schools.

        • Vicky32 15.1.1.1

          dv ant yes your understanding as those of your elitist cohorts will mean we will slip further down the economic ladder as a nation.So you are saying that large class sizes shouldn’t be tolerated at all even in public schools.

          I fear Mik.e that you missed his sardonic point!

  16. Penny Bright 16

    Gosh – appears my reporting the FACTS have got a few bites?

    All good!

    ‘You don’t cop the flak unless you’re over the target’

    Keep going – you’re making my evening ………… 🙂

    Oh dear – seems I have kicked over a hornets’ nest on Cameron Slater’s blog?

    Funny the reaction some people have to the FACTS?

    Oh well – see what the response is to this next KICK………….. ? 🙂

    http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/2012/06/the-lies-the-left-tells/

    You have all checked out http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com ?

    Any considered opinions on when ‘shonky’ John Key is going to have to stop protecting ‘dodgy’ John Banks?

    Having held seven protests to date in the streets of the Epsom electorate, I can tell you that there are a growing number of voters who are concerned with John Key’s continued defence of the indefensible.

    Mind you – given John Key’s blinding hypocrisy and proven track record over Tranz Rail – it’s unlikely that he’s going to be able to ‘lead from the front’ when it comes to ‘honorable’ and ethical behaviour?

    Kind regards,

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com
    http://www.pennybright4epsom.org.nz

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    18 hours ago
  • Dying For Latvia?
    Preparing For War: Nato forces in the former Soviet republic of Latvia as part of the 2014 "Silver Arrow" military exercises in the Baltic states. Such naked demonstrations of Nato's extended reach - right up to the borders of the… ...
    19 hours ago
  • How much do you really know about turtles?
    I’m Willie and I’m an oceans campaigner here at Greenpeace.Over the years I’ve had the privilege of watching turtles from the bow of Greenpeace ships, and many of my colleagues have encountered these peaceful ocean wanderers far out at sea… ...
    19 hours ago
  • How much do you know about whales?
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    19 hours ago
  • Are noisy oceans to blame for beached whales?
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    21 hours ago
  • Sylvia Park growth plans
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    Transport BlogBy John Polkinghorne
    21 hours ago
  • PrintNZ Forum Speakers Enlighten Delegates
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    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Nick Smith: There is NO crisis
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    My ThinksBy boonman
    1 day ago
  • Tracking the 2°C Limit – April 2016
    April is starting to come down off the shockingly high anomalies of the first couple of months of this year. GISS is clocking in a still strong warm anomaly of 1.11°C. This is by far the hottest April in the… ...
    1 day ago
  • Fanshawe St Bus Stop improvements
    Occasionally it is small projects that can have a lot of impact on people’s PT experience. With the ever growing number of people working near Victoria Park, an upgrade to the bus stops on Fanshawe St along with improvements to the… ...
    1 day ago
  • Fanshawe St Bus Stop improvements
    Occasionally it is small projects that can have a lot of impact on people’s PT experience. With the ever growing number of people working near Victoria Park, an upgrade to the bus stops on Fanshawe St along with improvements to the… ...
    1 day ago
  • An abuse of the Speaker’s chair
    Last week NewsHub revealed leaked MPI reports which showed that MPI had been turning a blind eye to widespread criminal behaviour in the fishing industry. Today was the first day of Parliament since those revelations, and given their seriousness, it… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • An abuse of the Speaker’s chair
    Last week NewsHub revealed leaked MPI reports which showed that MPI had been turning a blind eye to widespread criminal behaviour in the fishing industry. Today was the first day of Parliament since those revelations, and given their seriousness, it… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Punakaiki Fund invests in Populate
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    Lance WiggsBy Lance Wiggs
    2 days ago
  • A piece of gratis media advice for Hilary Clinton
      Here’s some free media advice for Hilary Clinton now just trailing Donald Trump in the polls: Stop smiling and waving to “people you recognise” in the crowd. It’s insulting to everyone else, looks (and may well be) dishonest… ...
    2 days ago
  • A piece of gratis media advice for Hilary Clinton
      Here’s some free media advice for Hilary Clinton now just trailing Donald Trump in the polls: Stop smiling and waving to “people you recognise” in the crowd. It’s insulting to everyone else, looks (and may well be) dishonest… ...
    2 days ago
  • The Nuit Debout revolt in France: let the gems sparkle. . .
    by Denis Godard The movement of occupation of squares in France is [over] two weeks old. [1] Its evolution is difficult to predict, because it is open to many unforeseen events, even though its roots are deep. At this point… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Open Government: Unilateral
    Back in April, State Services Minister Paula Bennett announced in an answer to a Parlaimentary written question that we were consulting the Open Government Secretariat about an extension to the deadline for submitting our action plan:While New Zealand's second Open… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Open Government: Unilateral
    Back in April, State Services Minister Paula Bennett announced in an answer to a Parlaimentary written question that we were consulting the Open Government Secretariat about an extension to the deadline for submitting our action plan:While New Zealand's second Open… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    frogblogBy Marama Davidson
    2 days ago
  • Free the Wicklow 2
    Protests around the imprisonment of these two activists are taking place around Ireland and also in Britain.  Anyone fancy organising something at the Irish embassy in Wellington  There is also an Irish consulate in Auckland. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • DIY Touring The World: New Zealand
    New Zealand has a small population, few places to play and not much money for touring bands - but you can’t beat the beautiful landscapes, hidden gem venues and fantastic audiences. Music impresario Ian Jorgensen has been touring bands… ...
    2 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    A mass government house-building programme is a favourite policy of the left for solving the Auckland housing crisis. Use cheap government capital, build affordable, energy-efficient homes, mass produce them to get efficiencies of scale, and get people back into owning… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    A mass government house-building programme is a favourite policy of the left for solving the Auckland housing crisis. Use cheap government capital, build affordable, energy-efficient homes, mass produce them to get efficiencies of scale, and get people back into owning… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Protected: Tributes to Dame Margaret Sparrow
    This post is password protected. You must visit the website and enter the password to continue reading.Filed under: Uncategorized ...
    ALRANZBy ALRANZ
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand and New Zealand
    There’s a 2009 sci-fi novel by China Miéville called The City and the City. The action takes place in two separate cities which overlap each other geographically, but the denizens of each city is compelled to ‘Unsee’ things they see happening in… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand and New Zealand
    There’s a 2009 sci-fi novel by China Miéville called The City and the City. The action takes place in two separate cities which overlap each other geographically, but the denizens of each city is compelled to ‘Unsee’ things they see happening in… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • Breaking free from fossil fuels – the risk we take is not taking action
    Last week, #BreakFree2016 wrapped up across the globe. Greenpeace joined with many inspiring organisations in a global wave of peaceful actions that lasted for 12 days and took place across six continents to target the world’s most dangerous fossil fuel projects.In places… ...
    2 days ago
  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    2 days ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    2 days ago
  • Tinder and 3nder are officially at war
    Your right to swipe for threesomes is under threat.    Some clean-cut millennials enjoying the 3nder afterglow. 1232RF Those for whom three is the magic sex-number should know that one's right to swipe one's way into a six-limb circus is… ...
    2 days ago
  • Weekly Listening: Die Antwoord, Joey Purp, King Kapisi and more
    A showcase of some of the best new music releases from the past week.   Joey Purp - GIRLS @ Feat. Chance The Rapper This track might be the catchiest three minutes and 32 seconds to hit your ears… ...
    2 days ago
  • Some big news, for me
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    GrumpollieBy Andrew
    2 days ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    frogblogBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    2 days ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    2 days ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    frogblogBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 days ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    frogblogBy Gareth Hughes
    2 days ago
  • What we are expected to believe
    In recent months I have become increasingly concerned at the state of bullshit in this country. Bullshit, as Harry Frankfurt famously wrote, is distinguished not by its intentionally negative truth value (those are lies) but its absence of intentional truth… ...
    2 days ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    2 days ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    2 days ago
  • Why are whistleblowers being prosecuted as spies?
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    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    2 days ago
  • Spend and Tax
    As a general rule, New Zealanders want more public spending. Surveys (such as the 2014 Election Survey) show consistent support for increases in spending, particularly in the areas of health, education, housing, law enforcement, public transport and the environment (in… ...
    Briefing PapersBy Brian Easton
    2 days ago
  • The birth place of the artist
    It may not be the best reason to fund the arts. It’s certainly not the only one. But travelling to the small city of Rovereto, at the feet of the Italian dolomites, reminded me of the lasting influence that a… ...
    Bat bean beamBy Giovanni Tiso
    2 days ago

  • Minister won’t fess up on wrong figures
    The Minister of Health was caught out telling porkies in Parliament today when he was asked about the number of people getting access to mental health and addiction services, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. ...
    12 hours ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    12 hours ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    12 hours ago
  • Scrambled announcement policy on the hoof
    Paula Bennett’s scrambled desperate announcement that she will pay homeless people to move to the regions is just the latest evidence of the disarray this Government’s housing policy is in, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This is policy… ...
    13 hours ago
  • Police Minister admits resolution rates fall short of expectation
    Police Minister Judith Collins has admitted in Parliament current burglary resolution rates are not meeting the expectations of our communities, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash “Out of 284 police stations in New Zealand in 2015, 24 stations recorded zero… ...
    14 hours ago
  • Mojo Mathers: A better deal for animals in Budget 2016
    Currently we are failing animals in NZ. On the face of it farmed and domestic animals in this country have strong legal protection from abuse, cruelty and neglect. In reality it seems that only the very worst, most extreme cases… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    14 hours ago
  • Metiria Turei: What we need from Budget 2016
    Every family deserves a warm decent home.  Everyone believes that. This housing crisis is just the latest consequence of a Government who puts the interests of the few wealthy people above the needs of NZ families.  Families are doing it… ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei
    16 hours ago
  • Dairy exports fall of 11%: Budget action on diversification needed
    Dairy exports have fallen 11 per cent compared to this time last year, a fall of almost $1.5b, showing the Government must take clear action on diversifying the economy in tomorrow’s Budget, says Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David… ...
    16 hours ago
  • Investors driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland
    Investors cashing in on skyrocketing Auckland house prices are driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland and causing homeownership rates in some of our poorest suburbs to plummet, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New analysis shows… ...
    19 hours ago
  • Budget must deliver on paid parental leave
    Budget 2016 must deliver 26 weeks paid parental leave by April 2018 – anything less will be short-changing families, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “My Bill which is before Parliament this afternoon has majority support and does just that. I… ...
    19 hours ago
  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    2 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    2 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    2 days ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 days ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    2 days ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 days ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    3 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    3 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    4 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    5 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    6 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    6 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    6 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    6 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    6 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    6 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    6 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    6 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    7 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    7 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    7 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    7 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    7 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    7 days ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 week ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    1 week ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago

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