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Parata to the Headmaster’s office?

Written By: - Date published: 1:58 pm, June 7th, 2012 - 50 comments
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Nanaia Mahuta has a wicked sense of humour, as well as being a very smart politician. She’s issued a report card on National’s performance on education – Tolley gets a C- for cuts to adult and community education, a D- for slashing cuts to early childhood education, and a C+ for putting some of it back after they realised their mistake. Parata gets an F for failing to do homework.

Nanaia Mahuta says:

“Unfortunately ‘new entrant’ Hekia Parata has shown little improvement. She has been uncooperative and disruptive. Failure to do any homework has put her at risk of suspension, or possibly expulsion,”

“While the Minister claims that only 10 per cent of all schools will be affected by her behaviour she is unable to provide the evidence to support those claims. Meanwhile the education sector is arguing that many more schools will be hit by the ratio changes.

“The Minister has also claimed that investing in quality teachers is critical, yet she fails to explain how capping teacher numbers at current levels for the next four years will impact on classroom learning..

“Larger classes are no substitute for teachers being able to spend quality time with students in a dynamic learning environment. Labour will reverse National’s policy because it makes no sense if we want all our children to get the best start at school and stay engaged in learning.

“Ms Parata must try harder. She lacks listening skills and has shown she has trouble with numbers. We’re giving her an F,” said Nanaia Mahuta.

Mahuta’s report card also says that Parata risks expulsion. There may be something in that, judging by John Key’s comments from London that she should talk to the unions. Looks like a call to the headmaster’s office in the offing.

Sounds like there is a lot of scurrying in the Beehive as well. It maybe time for the predicted backdown.

 

50 comments on “Parata to the Headmaster’s office?”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    Glad to hear that Labour have said they will reverse anything National does in this regard.

    Now they just need to trumpet that line far and wide.

  2. Lanthanide 2

    From stuff:
    BREAKING NEWS Major U-turn as Education Minister says class sizes won’t change … More soon

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      They’ve now got a more substantive article up on this:

      In a major u-turn, Education Minister Hekia Parata says staff pupil ratios will not change.

      The planned changes announced in last month’s Budget were to have saved the Government around $174 million over four years.

      Parata said the Government had decided not to make the change after it became clear parents did not accept the change.

      “We are reversing the decision.”

      She said she had discussed it with Prime Minister John Key and other senior ministers his morning.

      The change meant $60 million set aside to improve teaching quality and professional leadership would not go ahead.

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/education/7059177/Backlash-forces-Government-class-size-U-turn

      • McFlock 2.1.1

        But don’t they have an extra $40mil that treasury missed and could be put towards “teaching quality improvement”?

        Lame.

      • If this decision was truly made after it became clear parents did not accept the change, it has been waiting a long time to be announced.

        No credit to National. I’m tired of this crazy-then-backdown cycle, it’s not amusing and anyone with half a brain sees through it.

    • Hekia Parata and National have done the right thing by listening to the cacophony of opposition to and advice on their attempted class size re-arrangement.

      They reverted to common sense. It would be good if they could now patch up Government-teacher relationships and work together towards the best options and outcomes for the kids.

      Now National have shown they can listen and readjust their policies, maybe they can have another listen to the huge wall of opinion urging them to look at the Super issue.

      • McFlock 2.2.1

        It’s a shame that they needed neon signs 50 yards high and 200dB loudspeakers yelling at them to take the hint.

      • Lanthanide 2.2.2

        “Now National have shown they can listen and readjust their policies, maybe they can have another listen to the huge wall of opinion urging them to look at the Super issue.”

        An asset sales, which “common sense” says shouldn’t be sold, let alone the financial figures proving that within 5 years we’ll have less money than if we’d kept them.

        With the world economy again looking grim thanks to Greece, selling our assets at the moment seems like bad timing.

        • gobsmacked 2.2.2.1

          Hekia Parata listened to John Key, and the message was monosyllabic. The public didn’t enter her head.

      • mac1 2.2.3

        “Cacophony,” Pete George? That means a mix of discordant and meaningless sounds, and should not be used to describe the opposition of parents, teachers, students and public to the ‘reforms’ proposed by Hekia Parata. Might I, in part jest only, suggest that the meaning of cacophony as being meaningless sound might be applied to most of your offerings? I do, however, agree with you regarding Super that National might see the light on that one, too.

    • Dr Terry 2.3

      The back down is good news indeed! Parata might have to report to the headmaster, but who does he have to report to? The people, of course! So long as the memories of the people do not quickly fade, as too often is the case.
      I wrote Parata a carefully composed and polite letter, only to receive back her own defensive document which displayed utter lack of care or sensitivity. Now, I expect her to boast about the change of “heart”!

  3. Slap
    D
    o
    w
    n

    “Hekia Parata and National have done the right thing…”

    Can’t help yourself, Pete, can you.

    • You can’t help yourself can you.

      National made a monumental blunder on this, but at least they’ve conceded and retracted, that’s a good thing, so credit where it’s due.

      And this pretty much guarantees that they won’t attempt to revisit class sizes to this extent this term. Also a god thing.

      Would you have preferred they had carried on with the policy regardless? That would have been the worse they could have done.

      • Deano 3.1.1

        Yeah, but they could have just not been fuck-ups in the first place.

        And, Pete, where will the money come from now? Vote Education isn’t being increased and this back-down eliminates $170m of savings. That means there’s $170m more spending in Vote Education now than there is money. What is going to be cut?

        • TheContrarian 3.1.1.1

          everyone makes fuck ups. The important thing is recognizing it and not doing it again

          • Kotahi Tane Huna 3.1.1.1.1

            170,000 jobs fuck-up.

            Electricity prices to increase fuck-up.

            Double-dip recession fuck-up.

            And for the cherry on top this isn’t the first time – a re-run of the useless incompetence of the 1990s. Not to mention the 1930s. What was that about recognising it and not doing it again?

            The National Party is all fuck-up and no recognition.

          • Kaplan 3.1.1.1.2

            I hope those people that fucked up and voted national last time round have learned from their mistake.

          • North 3.1.1.1.3

            Yes Contra…….but all is not forgiven, nor forgotten. I know you’d have it otherwise but even you know it’s not otherwise.

            What’s important is not what’s in the minds of the huge numbers who’ve already snapped this mob for the disingenuous, bullshitting, contempt for the public, blame everyone else, growing hint of incompetence, “operators” they are.

            What’s important is that every month the gloss tarnishes. Increasingly Smile and Wave ain’t enough. The Golden Girl looks like a dick, everyone knows it was Johnny’s baby in the first place, and yet to come is the conclusion to the Banks debacle, and whatever KiwiKimDotcom’s got up his sleeve. The ahua is starting to look rather stink to the public at large. There emerges a more or less picture of the rot in para 2 above. Clay feet anyone ?

            We can also confidently anticipate further cock-ups , maybe even a scandal or two, when the succession wars start in earnest.

            It’s not gonna get any better Contra. Elvis has left the building leaving behind a twart who increasingly looks pretty shifty.

            Kia Ora Hawaii December ’14 (or sooner).

        • Pete George 3.1.1.2

          Deano – I’m sure those opposing the policy will have thought of that and will have suggestions where else the savings can be made.

          • Deano 3.1.1.2.1

            they have. But not out of Vote Education.

            So, the question is: if you’re not cutting teacher numbers, what are you cutting to keep within your Vote Education allocation’?

            This is a real and important question, Pete, which the government is accountable for. Your hair-brain logic doesn’t diminish that

          • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1.2.2

            Yep, we have, but we already know that NACT+UF+MP won’t cut those wastes of money as they’ve already said so. Something about them being significant despite the fact that, even under the best possible scenarios, they’re still not worth what they cost.

            • Ed 3.1.1.2.2.1

              Some caution is needed – as ever with National the fine print is critical – ‘misunderstandings” are engineered, and all problems can be answered by reducing public services.

              The news article quoted above said
              “The change would not affect the track to surplus by 2014/2015.
              Savings would come from pre-committed funding in next year’s Budget and the Government would find other savings within the education sector. ”

              and from
              http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10811411
              we have:
              “She said efforts would be made to find further savings across the Education budget because it was clear that the proposals for higher quality teaching had resonated. ”

              Combine that with Parata’s statement yesterday that there would be an absolute freeze of teacher numbers at the current level (52,000?), it appears that they will try to achieve the savings through stealth.

              And there has been no backdown on extra money for private schools, or on the proposals to require a post graduate qualification (while reducing support for post -grad students). They can allow vacancies to remain unfilled by being able to say that there are insufficient trained applicants . . .

              • Draco T Bastard

                Yep, NACT are still out to screw the public education sector so as, as all the private sector subsidies indicate, to force people into using the private education sector. Great for the rich mates who will get even more government guaranteed profits.

          • mike e 3.1.1.2.3

            pathetic guile tax booze gambling and internet inport purchases under $ 400 dollars make them pay GST like every body else has too CGT.
            This just shows how useless this govt and its backers are.
            This govt including the minister of revenue {lack of ideas hair brained unbridled fools]
            Subsidizing problem gamblers and and alcoholics is really going to bring us a brighter future.

          • Matthew Whitehead 3.1.1.2.4

            Yep, right from the surplus. Trying to get back into surplus during a recession or even a recovery is Herbert Hoover nonsense and anyone attempting it deserves to be laughed out of office.

      • Kotahi Tane Huna 3.1.2

        Yes, in much the same way that pashing a leper is better than pashing a leper with a cold-sore.

        Keep pashing the leper, Petey.

      • risildo 3.1.3

        Is not Peter Dunne part of this Government?.Yes I think he is
        Why do you blame just National when Peter Dunne is also part of the ruling Government?

        or is it only when things go well that he is included?

        • Lanthanide 3.1.3.1

          It’s a tacit admission that Dunne is simply a grogan sticking to this government.

      • Dr Terry 3.1.4

        Oh yes, Pete, they are so gracious in ignominious defeat! Bet your sweet life, they count on views expressed in your obsequious terms. These Tories have bowed only through public pressure and might. You give them all the “credit” you want, they deserve not a whit of it.On almost any occasion I practice “giving credit where it is due”, but sorry to say, this is not one of them.

        • Dr Terry 3.1.4.1

          This comment is was placed early, but dropped right down the list. I intended to add for Pete that rather than “doing the decent thing” and all that, the government ‘s greatest error was to tread on the toes of its own supporters. This is a deviation from striking at poorer and less powerful people, as well as those who do not yet have the vote.

          The attack on teachers themselves has been scurrilous. National has almost pulled off leading us to consider our teachers “lacking in quality” which is anything but an established case. We are extremely fortunate in the teachers we have and they are not to be “blamed” for anything wrong in the educational system. My grandchildren are at schools and they love their teachers just as they love learning. This is so different from when I was at school, very many years ago. Over all those years, there has been steady, if not spectacular, improvement in teaching
          of quality.. This Government never ceases to search for scapegoats in desperate attempt to cover its own inadequacies.

      • bbfloyd 3.1.5

        making a virtue out of necessity again little pete…….. the notion that this act of stupidity , compounded by incompetence , necessitating a public capitulation is anything else but an overt example of a government devoid of any principles other than naked self interest, and self preservation, is naive at best……

        there are many worse reasons for fulminating that kind of untruth…..

      • felix 3.1.6

        “And this pretty much guarantees that they won’t attempt to revisit class sizes to this extent this term. Also a god thing.”

        No Pete, not god enough. If it’s a dumb fucking idea – and everyone knows it is – then it’d be a dumb fucking idea in any term. Having National, Act, and United Future put this dumb fucking idea on the back burner for a couple more years to be served later when the public are hungrier or more accustomed to the taste of shit is not a god thing, it’s a deceptive stupid evil thing.

        “Would you have preferred they had carried on with the policy regardless? That would have been the worse they could have done.”

        Ignoring for a moment that it’s not a binary choice between the status quo and this dumb fucking idea, and ignoring that it’s obviously not the worst thing they could have come up with (50:1 ratio would be worse, so would 30:1 + poking every child in the eye), the take away from your comment is that you’re expecting Dunne and Key and Banks to get a pat on the back for not doing “the worse they could have done.”

        Wow, ambitious for Noo Zilln, eh?

  4. “Now National have shown they can listen and readjust their policies, maybe they can have another listen to the huge wall of opinion urging them to look at the asset sales issue.”

    Wisdom from UnitedFuture.

    • ianmac 4.1

      Yep Robert. Perhaps tomorrow Mr Dunne will respond:
      “Mr Dunne has done the right thing by listening to the cacophony of opposition to and advice on the attempted Asset Sales.”
      So the headline will read tomorrow – or maybe the next day?

    • tc 4.2

      Wisdom or the tongue’s so far down the back of NACT’s pants they can’t see sense and believe they’ll recant on asset sales also……delusional more like it.

  5. Frida 5

    Epic Fail, Parata. Time to step down.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 5.1

      Did poor Parroty even have input into the policy? She’s there to do what Treasury says isn’t she?

      • bbfloyd 5.1.1

        I seriously doubt she’d read more than the preamble in the front….. working out policy is what they are paying consultants for nowadays….

        the only problem was that the spindoctors gave her the script that didn’t have any provision for the reaction the policy got….. sad really, she read her lines reasonably well….. a bit wooden in parts,,, and not enough genuine emotion shown….. maybe her coach can introduce a bit more role play into her training….

  6. Roy 6

    Yeah, I wonder if Parata was just a patsy. Maybe they set her up to fail because they don’t really want her in Cabinet, seeing as she is not their preferred gender or their preferred ethnicity.

    • Blue 6.1

      Yeah, everyone’s blaming Parata but she was just the mouthpiece. The buck stops with John Key and Bill English. Parata was just doing what she was told.

      If people blame her for all this then they are doing exactly what National want them to do – focusing all their anger on Hekia and letting Key and English off scot-free.

      • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1

        +1

        Hekia was just the fall girl/scapegoat.

      • Dr Terry 6.1.2

        Fair enough Blue, to an extent. Parata must take her share of blame from which none is exempt. Remember (perhaps you don’t) how the Nazi leaders tried to claim that they were “only following orders” to justify their “mistakes”? That defense of cowards was thrown out by the court. As I say, none is exempt from accountability.

        • bbfloyd 6.1.2.1

          quite right doctor….. parata was pursuing her own agenda just like the rest of them….

          Actually, your comment has reminded me of a couple of books devoted to the rise of the nazi party…. the byzantine webs of intrigue, and backstabbing that characterised the politics of the nazis has parallels within the current government….

          Let’s hope this doesn’t end up a repeat performance of 1984…..(not the orwell version, the muldoon version)

  7. Sarah 7

    It is heartening that the government can back down from poorly thought out rushed policy. Alas, I fear they wont do the same with the asset sale legislation- instead they are determined to fast track it through the house. See http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10811440

    Our irreplacable energy assets will then be part-sold to those who have the wealth to afford the shares. And as a nation we will be worse off as inevitably some if not most shares end up in foreign ownership.

    Its time for people to really wake up to this issue and take it to the streets!! Also, lobby your local MP- ring their office and ask for an appointment and tell them why.

    • Dr Terry 7.1

      Yes, I get your point Sarah, but must modify some of your wording. I do not think “it is heartening that the government can back down” – again, as though, at heart, what a decent lot they are! I find it “mortifying they they are obliged to back down” not only for crass misjudgment, worse for acting as though it is the people (like you and me) who are stupid. Key, of course, believes he can afford the risk, as he is even yet strong in the polls, and that though people are not dumb, they do have a habit of overlooking or “forgetting” these blunders.

  8. Logie97 8

    … just wait ’til National Standards are proven to be a f..k up as well. Unfortunately Tolley and Parata will be forgotten. Sadly, however, the tail will have grown in the meantime because the teachers will have been taken away from teaching to constantly monitor progress for some anal and irrelevant minister in Wellington.

  9. mike e 9

    Nactional stands for lowering the standards of education.

    • Kiwi Pete 9.1

      Yeah, they’re not known as The Stupid Party for nothing. They’re just building their support base!

  10. Time will reveal what really motivated Parata’s decision, political survival or educational realities:
    http://localbodies-bsprout.blogspot.co.nz/2012/06/paratas-future.html

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