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Unqualified teachers in charter schools condemned

Written By: - Date published: 8:38 am, September 7th, 2012 - 181 comments
Categories: education, national, schools - Tags: , ,

The Nats’ inconsistency on the importance of having well qualified teachers is one of their most brazen examples of naked political opportunism. Hekia Parata:

Focus on quality will raise achievement

Education Minister Hekia Parata today said the National-led Government’s focus on teaching quality will raise achievement and ensure our young people get the skills they need to reach their potential. … “The single most important thing we can do to raise achievement is to improve teaching quality.”

John Key:

Key: Don’t worry about unqualified teachers

Prime Minister John Key says people should not be “hung up” on the fact that teachers without qualifications will be able to teach New Zealand children at charter schools.

Key’s self-serving dismissal of qualified teachers should by all rights be impossible to maintain in the face of a stinging report from the Ministry of Education, here reported by 3 News:

Ministry’s warning over charter schools

The Government is pushing ahead with allowing charter schools to employ unregistered teachers, despite the Ministry of Education warning against it.

… A regulatory impact statement from the ministry says anything less than 100 percent registered teachers “does not align with the government’s quality initiatives”.

“Teacher registration is one the most influential levers in raising teacher quality across the profession in both state and private schools,” it said.

“Allowing charter schools to stand outside this work will significantly damage the credibility of the crown.”

It said the potential for negative impacts on students’ education from unqualified or unregistered teachers is “high”.

The Nats won’t listen because the Nats don’t care about the quality of education, they only care about privatising it.

181 comments on “Unqualified teachers in charter schools condemned”

  1. Mark 1

    “they only care about privatising it.” We can only hope. Look at the results!

  2. Mark 2

    Hopefully the end game here is get the teachers unions out of our kids lives, then we’ll get progress. I actually support unions, but since they have become politicised “experts” such that no one else can have a good idea, I say away with them..

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      Hopefully the end game here is get the teachers unions out of our kids lives, then we’ll get progress.

      No we won’t. The progress we’ve had over the last century or so has been entirely due to unions and socialism. If we hadn’t had them we truly would be a feudal society again with all the social problems that brings.

      I actually support unions, but since they have become politicised “experts” such that no one else can have a good idea, I say away with them..

      When you get a bunch of specialists together then they usually have the best ideas about that speciality. Everyone else talking about that speciality is, quite simply, talking shit. In other words the best people to listen to about teaching happens to be the teachers who just happen to be in a union.

      • Mark 2.1.1

        Ah Draco, Brilliant comeback!

        “entirely due to unions and socialism” that’s made my week. Keep it up.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1

          It’s simple history but you’re to pig ignorant to know that.

          • Mark 2.1.1.1.1

            I remember socialism. It used to be all the rage, until everyone figured out we needed capitalism to pay the bills.

            • Colonial Viper 2.1.1.1.1.1

              You mean the same bills sent out to us by the same capitalists?

              • Mark

                Those same ones that invented the device you’re currently reading this on.

                • fatty

                  Mine’s made in China :/

                • NickS

                  :roll:

                  Funny, given that most of the tech development that underpins computing and the internet was funded by the state (mostly DARPA, but also needed for nuclear weapons research) or built as part of university research initiatives and oft released for “free” in relation to communication protocols.

                  • fatty

                    True, Ubuntu has been serving me well for a couple of years now, much better than Windows ever did. Last time I checked, Ubuntu doesn’t have anything to do with capitalism

                    • NickS

                      Heh, I’d move to it, but it takes to much damn effort to get windows games to run :P

                      Although valve, the makers of Half-Life and private owners of steam are possibly looking at making that a hell of a lot easier ;)

                    • fatty

                      “Heh, I’d move to it, but it takes to much damn effort to get windows games to run”

                      That’s the problem with capitalism, its holding us back

                    • Rich

                      Um, Ubuntu is produced by Canonical Ltd, a for-profit company with a reported $30mln turnover.

                      The business model of the OSS industry is basically that instead of charging for inadequately documented buggy software, they charge to help people use inadequately documented buggy software. Either way, it’s capitalism.

                      (and they have IP as well. In the case of Ubuntu, it’s the body of knowledge on how to make stuff work).

                • Colonial Viper

                  Those same ones that invented the device you’re currently reading this on.

                  Capitalists didn’t invent my HP laptop, you loser.

                  Indirectly at least, a couple of communist entrepreneur engineers in a garage in Palo Alto did. Learn your frakking Hewlett Packard history.

                  In my experience, engineers, designers, technicians, process workers, machine operators, and coders are the ones who invent and build shit.

                  Capitalists just leach off their work.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Capitalists just leach off their work.

                    QFT

                  • In my experience, engineers, designers, technicians, process workers, machine operators, and coders are the ones who invent and build shit.

                    You’d think this unremarkable observation would be so unremarkable that no-one would need to point it out. Sadly, that seems not to be the case, the world being full of people who apparently imagine guys like Donald Trump or Mitt Romney are the ones we have to thank for stuff like “that device you’re currently reading this on.”

                • NickS

                  :roll:

                  Also, capitalists generally don’t invent stuff, they merely provide teh financial capital for R&D (if they’re smart, r.e. the now dead Bell Labs string of money spinners) and manufacturing. So yeah, wtf are you smoking or be you just plain stupid?

            • Carol 2.1.1.1.1.2

              And yet, after a couple of decades of unfettered capitalism, more and more people are having difficulty paying their bills!

              • Draco T Bastard

                And a few people are getting very, very rich. Interestingly enough, it doesn’t appear to be either the people inventing stuff or doing the work.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1.1.3

              Did you note the GFC? Did you also note the bankster bailouts? Yep, that’s socialism paying for the failure of capitalism.

        • NickS 2.1.1.2

          “entirely due to unions and socialism” that’s made my week. Keep it up.

          Yeap, because the historical realities of how workers rights were pushed by unions (such as the 40hr week, work safety etc) will so totes disappear if you just ignore them :roll:

    • Dr Terry 2.2

      Now, Mark, I think you have said quite enough – stop making an ass of yourself.

    • irascible 2.3

      Mark, you’re talking cobblers. The Teacher Unions, made up of and governed by its members, are there to do several important things in the schools. 1) To protect the rights of teachers, as employees, to negotiate their salary and conditions of service, 2) to provide assistance for members that require help in their place of employment,and 3) to provide advice and informed commentary on matters of policy that may affect the workplace and the delivery of the tasks the members are required to provide.
      As an informed and involved group of people teachers have every right to offer commentary on policy and developments in education regardless of those who would wish to shut them down.
      If youbelieve that your children’s lives to be blighted and thus prevented from progressing then I would suggest that both you and your children are not living in a real universe and that you have no conception of the role of a trade union in the lives of its members and in the workplace.

  3. tracey 3

    So you dont actually support unions. If it werent for the union our teacher student ratios would have increased by now

    • Mark 3.1

      On the contrary, thats doing something to support their members.

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        You’re not for supporting our teachers, Mark?

        BTW that’s the purpose of unions like Federated Farmers and the Business Roundtable…to support their members…DUH

        • Mark 3.1.1.1

          Ah., the untouchable teachers. Turns out, half of them are below average.

          • Macro 3.1.1.1.1

            This man is BRILLIANT!!
            Hey people did you know that half are BELOW “average”!
            (I take it he is talking about a median here – not the mean.)
            Such an impressive statement of mathematical certitude!
            Go to the top of the class Mark – you must have had one of those teachers that are above “average” to know that sort of stuff.

          • NickS 3.1.1.1.2

            :roll:

            Someone failed statistics101 I see…

            Average doesn’t mean 50% in a population, as it depends on the population characteristics, so you can have non-bell curve distributions that spike up very quickly towards the statistical mean and vis versa.

            As for teaching skills, given you’ve got multiple skill areas you need to check a teacher against and control for students characteristics, you don’t get nice simple rankings. Unless you’re an idiot that is, who has trouble understanding complex stuff…

            • Macro 3.1.1.1.2.1

              “average” is not a mathematical term.
              The terms for measures of central tendency are “mean”, “median”, and “mode”.
              The mean (what one commonly calls an ‘average’ – the sum of all the scores divided by the number of scores) is only one statistic which can lie anywhere within the range of the data (as you point out) – which is why, I take it, that Mark is referring to the ‘median’ – here half the scores lie above and half below. The mode is the most frequent score.

              • fatty

                I actually assumed a bell curve.
                Mark stated that half of them are below average, so I assumed that the other half are above average…and since Mark will not be able to tell us how many teachers are below or above average, I see no reason not to assume a bell curve.
                Surprisingly, its probably not the stupidest comment Mark’s made on this thread.

              • NickS

                For the general population average = mean ;)

                • Macro

                  Not necessarily – for instance the “Average” house price is usually taken as the median house price – this being a far more meaningful statistic.
                  When incomes are quoted however, the “average” quoted, is usually the “mean” which as most of us here know, is NOT a fair representation of income for the general population being unfairly boosted by a few ultra high incomes. The mode is probably the best indication of where the majority of incomes lie.

                  • NickS

                    In the case of house prices yes, but for everything else average typically indicates the population mean :P

              • Mark

                I’ll concede on that one. Good work.. In teacherland their competencies no doubt don’t fit a standard distribution curve.

                So, what percentage do you reckon are below average then? Rhetorical question. You have no idea. Let’s be generous and say its 40%.

                • NickS

                  :roll:
                  QFT:

                  As for teaching skills, given you’ve got multiple skill areas you need to check a teacher against and control for students characteristics, you don’t get nice simple rankings. Unless you’re an idiot that is, who has trouble understanding complex stuff…

                  • Mark

                    You don’t get nice simple rankings because there are no criteria, no measurement, no standards, next to no peer review and no accountability. That’s why it’s so complex..

                    • NickS

                      :roll:

                      Cos there’s so totes not a academic area of study called Education Theory that critically examines how to teach and the affects therein on children and practices peer review. Let alone takes measurements of any sort.

                      Of course, Education Theory is probably a bit too complex for you :cool:

                      Especially with all the multi-factor statistics and critical writing involved in it.

                    • georgecom

                      Lots of criteria Mark, ongoing cycles of measurement, a range of standards, lots of peer review and high accountability. Things about teaching are complex because teaching is actually a complex matter.

                      Anything else?

                    • Macro

                      And that is why teachers NEED to be qualified! Even in private schools.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Mark:

                      A shit teacher having a shit day = you on your best day of the year.

                      Capiche?

          • Murray Olsen 3.1.1.1.3

            Mark actually may be right about half being below average if the number of teachers is large enough the the Central Limit Theorem holds. However, it’s still a pretty stupid statement if the average teacher is highly competent anyway and doesn’t prove his point at all. Unless, of course, his point is to be appointed to some education commission by Hekia Parata and John Banks, both well below average by any measure.
             

          • mike e 3.1.1.1.4

            so if they are below average why doe we have the 4th best education system in the world 16 th under the last nactional govt heading that way again with your rednek logic!
            Your just a naive redneck bully’
            John Key Came from a state house whose mother received the widows pension got a free education no student loan.
            If he was in the same situation now he would be stuck at the bottom of the heap and no way out.

      • georgecom 3.1.2

        Its helping teachers deliver a better quality of education.

        It’s also helping deliver better education for children.

        You think those things are not worth while Mark?

        • Mark 3.1.2.1

          Ongoing cycle of measurement? Lots of peer review? Seriously? 3 terms on a school boards haven’t shown me that..

          It’s smoke and mirrors. There is no real accountability. Name the last time a teacher was fired because they were incompetent. I can name several at my school who have tenure, and nothing much else to add.

          • Colonial Viper 3.1.2.1.1

            I can name several at my school who have tenure

            Please explain how the “tenure” clause works in your school’s employment contracts.

            • Mark 3.1.2.1.1.1

              I wish I could Viper. Every year they are still there. Nearly every year they get more money. Every year they do the same bad job. Every now and then principal shuffles them sideways in the vain hope he doesn’t have to deal with until next year. I’ll tell you a story about this one day. Just be thankful your kids teachers are doing a fabulous job, because their employment contract certainly doesn’t require it.

              • Colonial Viper

                Oh, so your use of the American college professor term “tenure” was actually bullshit? Good to know.

                Every year they do the same bad job. Every now and then principal shuffles them sideways in the vain hope he doesn’t have to deal with until next year. I’ll tell you a story about this one day.

                It sounds like it’s you who does a shit job on the Board of Trustees. Probably because your contract doesn’t require otherwise. Or because you are a dick. Not sure which. Be great to hear more “stories” (fairytales) from you.

          • georgecom 3.1.2.1.2

            whatever anectodal experiences you have had Mark I don’t lnow. However I do know that there multiple standards, reviews, appraisals and checks and balances in education and for teachers.

            Name me the last nurse, doctoer, lawyer, truck driver, fast food server, hair dresser, used car salesperson, water technician, accountant, architect who was fired for incompetence.

  4. mike 4

    And another report card on the NAct govt comes in. Let’s add it to the list and see how it changes the picture on their overall performance.

    Human Rights Commission: Fail
    Unemployment figures: Fail
    Waitangi Tribunal: Fail
    Child Poverty Report: Fail
    Ministry of Education: Fail

    But hey, John Key says he not bovvered, so it’s all good.

    • Mark 4.1

      Keeping you lot out of Government: Pass

      • mike 4.1.1

        So you don’t care if official reports, stats, advice, and tribunals say that your lot is doing a really crap job on multiple fronts, actively oiling up our downward slide while your guy shrugs his shoulders and says he’s not bovvered, as long as NAct keeps on fooling enough sheep to keep us lot in opposition?

        Keep on ticking the blue box munter.

        • Mark 4.1.1.1

          Yep, sure do care, that’s not the sole preserve of the left. What I don’t have is the Bitter, Twisted and Angry that’s apparent on this blog.

          • Colonial Viper 4.1.1.1.1

            Just a bit of sporting passion mate :cool:

          • NickS 4.1.1.1.2

            Lawl projecting much?

          • mike 4.1.1.1.3

            Wait so what you’re telling me is that you’re pleased with the NAct party because they succeeded in keeping the people who blog here out of government? Um, I don’t recall that there actually existed a “The Standard Bloggers United” Party at the last election Mark. So I don’t really see that as a big achievement to crow about myself. (But how about it guys? Lprent for PM? Anyone?)

            If you’re trying to claim that the diverse and often divergent attitudes and opinions here represent those of any current political party, well, they just don’t. This is an anonynous blog where any random person can post anything they want.

            Your argument is just stupid sh*t.

            • Mark 4.1.1.1.3.1

              You seem bitter and angry that your team’s not in government? There goes another personal attack. Will I be house nigger or hitler next?

              • Colonial Viper

                Mark. Fucking right mate. You are a House Nigger. Working for your betters and your masters, against your fellow NZers, and all for a pittance. Feel sorry for you.

                • Mark

                  Actually, I’m working for my family, my staff and my customers. So that I can buy them food and pay the taxes that pay for your computer time.

                  Who are you working for? What difference are you making?

                  • NickS

                    Because we’re all so totes on a benefit here :roll:

                    (Well, I’ll be soon, but that’s due to chronic depression and I’ll be trying to get off it asap as the skin on the soles of my feet will pay otherwise with nothing to do)

                    As for _that_ question, would you rather I commit suicide instead? Because frankly, that’s the logical implication of your question. You’re just too stupid to see it or too cowardly to admit it.

                    And why? Because the baggage of that question is that it devalues the life of anyone who isn’t working, or can’t work.

                  • lprent

                    I very much doubt that you pay for CV’s computer time. You definitely don’t pay for mine. I don’t think you’d be capable of understanding what I do.

                    Like using a unqualified teacher to teach anything it’s be a matter of random luck if you could rather than prediction.

                    • Mark

                      I’d say it’s pretty much certain you get paid by the govt, whilst slagging off the govt.

                      As for ‘devaluing people’s lives’ refer CV comment, whereby I am a house nigger working against my fellow citizens, no less.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      As for ‘devaluing people’s lives’ refer CV comment, whereby I am a house nigger working against my fellow citizens, no less.

                      These may be the first words of truth you have spoken for many moons, I’d wager. (The fact you paraphrased me helps heh)

                    • NickS

                      whilst slagging off the govt.

                      Ye gads, you’re stupid.

                      Hey, guess what? There’s thing called the Human Rights Act and while freedom of speech isn’t included as a direct part of it, it is a consequence. To the point, that one cannot be fired for speaking out against one’s employer, unless what’s being said is false without triggering funtime with the Employment Court. And in the case of those getting money from the government, only those in direct pay of the government, namely those working in a ministry or department have limitations on what they can say vis politics, and even then, that only applies to direct support, whilst on the clock. Government employees can still say that a policy is downright stupid off the job. Anyone else though, is under no obligation to spare the government from any criticism, and for teachers particularly, they’re paid and hired by the School Board, not the MoE.

                      As for ‘devaluing people’s lives’ refer CV comment, whereby I am a house nigger working against my fellow citizens, no less.

                      Fail dodge is fail (CV made a racist ad hom, where as you did something else entirely), so reply to my fucking post you coward.

                    • Mark

                      Brilliant, so I’ve got an interest in education and bring a differing opinion to the fight, and I’m a troll.

                      CV sticks it in all night with the insults and he’s an all round good bastard. (I know you’ll use that statement in evidence against me out of context at some point)

                      [lprent: So argue (generally) on the argument rather than the person, and you'll find that others (including me) do the same. The comment that I noted had no point in it.

                      If you read back through your comments like I did (use @author Mark in the search), then your comments mostly had no actual argument they can be catorgised as:-

                      1. Most consisted of unsustantiated assertions about your 'experience' - which without any argument is pointless if you are using a psuedonym. You have to say why it was you thought something worked or did not. Appeals to to dumb authority are about as much use as tits on a bull.
                      2. There were quite a few about how others were being unfair to you bacuse they insulted you (get used to it dickhead - this is the net). Insults are a way of life and if elegant enough, a source of amusement here.
                      3. And finally (and this is why I noticed you) making pointless insults with unsustantiated assertions. You didn't say why you disagreed with whoever and whatever you were getting wound up about you just made up crap as 'fact'. If you read the responses to you with 'insults' in they pretty much carry a point about why they think that you are talking out of your arse - deal with that first and embellish afterwards as clear speculation. Otherwise eventually they catch my moderating attention with a warning (and so do anyone elses).

                      You can act the victim all you like. I really don't give a pigs arse about your feelings. I'm interested in how the comments section behavior runs. After (I suspect) several times here you must have figured that out by now.

                      However if you want to argue here then change your behaviour. Anyway, enough feedback time. ]

                    • NickS

                      Mark, quit dodging my post you coward and address the fucking issue.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Mark said:

                      Brilliant, so I’ve got an interest in education

                      This is like the fucking Greeks saying that they have an “interest” in Troy

              • mike

                “You seem bitter and angry that your team’s not in government? There goes another personal attack. Will I be house nigger or hitler next?”

                You don’t use question marks very well?

                So no logical reply to anything I’ve said then. Big surprise from the guy who’s pulling out gems like ‘turns out half of them are below average’ and ‘computers were invented by capitalists’.

                I certainly am bitter and angry, but not because ‘my team’ didn’t get in. (I don’t particularly have a team.) I’m angry because this government is an incompetent, manipulative, lying, self-serving failure. What on Earth that has to do with my explaining to you why your argument is stupid sh*t I don’t know, you left that bit out. I’m pretty sure that’s because the stuff you write is stupid sh*t.

                Personal attack? Nope. I’ll explain it to ya. If I was to say, and we’re just talking hypothetically now, “You are a stupid sh*t”, then that would be personal. I said, “Your argument is stupid sh*t.” Look real hard and see if you can see the difference. If you’re too delicate a soul to handle being told stuff like this, then maybe you should just accept that the blog world isn’t for you.

                As for your third stupid sh*t sentence, nope, I have no intention of calling you a house nigger, (even though CV makes a good case), nor Hitler (wtf). That’s three out of three wrong and stupid sentences. Nice hitting!

                But I will go ahead and call you a rank troll Mark. This site has seen the likes of you come and go many many times. And more than half of them were better trolls than you are. That means you’re below average, (just thought I’d help you out there). I’m guessing they are mostly spotty teenagers who think it’s clever and funny to hijack discussions, provoke reactions, pick fights, and respond to coherent criticism with stupid sh*t just to keep the party going.

                It’s kind of like when you see the boy racers with their lowered Ford Escorts, tinted windows, “Josh” and “Katy” sticker on the windscreen, and the noisiest redundant muffler they can find. They think they are pretty kewl no doubt. But they’re not. They’re just lame. Or when a bunch of 12 year old kids get into sniffing glue coz that looks kewl. It’s not, it’s lame. Like your trolling Mark, it’s lame and embarrassing (for you). It makes you look, well, stupid.

                I so do look forward to your measured and well reasoned response.

            • weka 4.1.1.1.3.2

              “But how about it guys? Lprent for PM? Anyone?”

              Nah, he should be Speaker of the House :evil:

          • prism 4.1.1.1.4

            Mark
            I think that you are Twisted though. You seem to have appeared on Sept 3rd and tried to diss the discussion on 250,000 signatures against asset sales. Now your subject of attack is about charter schools. You seem very NACT oriented.

          • mike e 4.1.1.1.5

            freudian slip there Mark

  5. Dr Terry 5

    Thanks Mark, about time you spluttered “pass”!

    Problem is National does not want an educated (thus informed and thinking) public. None but the elite. They are threatened by intelligence among the herd.

    • prism 5.1

      Dr Terry
      I suggest they are threatened by the sneaking idea of ‘superior intelligence’ in the herd. Very off putting that.

    • Mark 5.2

      I seem to have to splutter over your pious sanctimony.

    • Mark 5.3

      Think you’ll find that is the left that relies on an uneducated populace for votes. It’s in the Nats best interest to improve education, that improves their natural constituency.

      • Colonial Viper 5.3.1

        It’s in the Nats best interest to improve education for wealthy kids, that improves their natural constituency.

        FIFY

        Hence an extra $30M for private schools

        • Mark 5.3.1.1

          Wealthy kids have always had a choice. That’s why many Labour politicians send their kids to private schools

          Kids like mine, don’t, because I’m self employed and struggle each week to pay wages. They go to a decile one. Im on the board because I care about what goes on. I would be on the board of a charter school tomorrow, because then I could really make a difference.

          I suspect you are in this blog being Angry because you are at the govt trough. What difference do you make everyday?

          Better education will mean more wealthy kids.

          [lprent: He isn't. Nor am I. And right now I can say with your propensity to making really dumb assertions, that you sound more like a deliberate troller than anyone worth arguing with. Looking at all of your comments is like looking at the troll manual for lines to say on blogs circa 2007.

          Lift your standard and learn to argue before I get irritated reading you. And read the policy if I haven't advised you to do so in the past (the whining sounds awfully familar).

          After all there is a chance you're not one of the idiots previously booted from here for being too thick to argue your corner with some intelligence and has received summary judgement when I get tired of reading lines cribbed from a fifteen year olds book on how to look good for the other sex.. ]

          • NickS 5.3.1.1.1

            Better education will mean more wealthy kids.

            And yet the conclusion from a very large number of education academics and studies is that systems like the National Standards put in place by National don’t increase educational achievement (go use google scholar, that’s unless you’re going to pay me to do teh research)

            And guess what else? Children in poverty don’t learn as well as those who aren’t, due to higher likelihood of home life stresses, illness and other issues that go with poverty. So one of the best means of increasing educational success is to deal with poverty and provide broad social welfare and health coverage. Instead of ignoring it or making it worse like what National’s been doing.

          • Mark 5.3.1.1.2

            Have I not argued the points put to me, made no personal insults, provided stats where I could, and been reasonable at all times?

            [lprent: no. And I read a page (ie up to 50) of your comments. See my other note about what I observed. The only stats I saw you make had no link next to them which makes them meaningless assertions. For some strange reason everyone just ignored them - did you ever wonder why? ]

            • Colonial Viper 5.3.1.1.2.1

              A reasonable, well spoken traitor is still, in the final analysis, nought but a traitor

            • NickS 5.3.1.1.2.2

              Say something stupid, prepare to be nommed upon.

              And what stats?

            • bbfloyd 5.3.1.1.2.3

              skidmarks… you’ve been trying to make this whole pile of bullshit you call debate personal from the first….. All you’ve actually done here is fucked up a potentially interesting debate….

              “bitter and twisted”?.. more like mindlessly smug and ignorant…..

              I can’t believe so many here bothered to attempt to reason with you…. such an obvious waste of space….

              • Colonial Viper

                All you’ve actually done here is fucked up a potentially interesting debate….

                I think he regards that as “mission accomplished”.

                • bbfloyd

                  Sad, but too true CV……I grow more impatient by the day with skiddy and his little gang of “southpark superheroes”…..The resentment at having to watch these morons masturbate all over well meaning people just because they can is becoming palpable ….

          • fatty 5.3.1.1.3

            “Better education will mean more wealthy kids.”

            I have heard this before, but I don’t get it. If Minimum wage is low, and the top wages are ridiculously high, then how does better education make us all more wealthy. We can’t all be CEOs or doctors. Someone’s gotta clean toilets, and an educated toilet cleaner gets the same as an uneducated toilet cleaner.
            So shouldn’t we be trying to make things more equal, rather than trying to have everyone with post-secondary education?

            • Colonial Viper 5.3.1.1.3.1

              Exactly. In the US this year an ugly milestone was reached: having attended university gives you no better chance of employment than not having ever been to university.

              Postgrads stacking shelves, anyone.

              • Draco T Bastard

                That’s happening throughout the world. Productivity is so high today there is absolutely no way to actually meaningfully employ everybody full time unless you get rid of the dead weight loss of profit and most of those people will end up being employed in either the arts or in R&D.

                • NickS

                  Yeah, the lack of work due to higher productivity has the very real potential to drive political instability world wide unless governments address it, and worst of all, the radical right is best poised to take advantage of it (r.e. the BNP in the UK and friend in the EU) due to the undermining of the activist left by the government and the media in most western nations.

          • mike e 5.3.1.1.4

            labour brought our education from 16 th place to fourth in the OECD.
            Put science maths and English back on the curriculum while national were more interested in religious studies .
            Last time national were in power they gouged the education system took it from sixth down to 16th.
            The same thing is happening all over again.

  6. ianmac 6

    J ust read an article that my sister saved for my return called “Finnish Lessons: No Charter Schools” by Philip Matthews, Mainlander, The Press, August 25.
    A very fulsome well balanced article outlining the misdirection of the current Government’s plan, and the intent of people like Mark above to stir up hatred and how they avoid the evidence.
    Wish I could find it online. Best summary that I have seen so far.

  7. Fisiani 7

    Charter schools will be popular with aspiring parents in South and West Auckland who want their children to succeed in education. No evidence of such parents in the comments above. All I see is a nihilistic intolerance of doing something different to help children learn.

    • mike 7.1

      So what you’re saying is: “I am right and you are wrong.”

      Wow that’s certainly a convincing argument. Maybe next you could remind people here that National’s policies are great, so anyone who doesn’t like them must be stupid.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      The point that you fail to see due to your partisan blinders is that this government isn’t doing anything to help children learn. In fact, they seem to be going out of their way to prevent the children from learning.

      • Mark 7.2.1

        “partisan blinders” seriously Draco, you need to look back on some of your own comments before throwing that around.

        • Draco T Bastard 7.2.1.1

          I’m quite aware of my own comments – they’re pretty critical of all parties. You, on the other hand, tell everyone that NACT are great despite the empirical evidence showing otherwise.

          National Standards don’t work – we know this because they’re presently failing is every country that has tried them (and every country that has tried them their education system weren’t as good as ours to begin with)

          Increasing the number of students to teachers doesn’t work because it increases the stress on the teachers, requires that they spend even more time on administration and decreases the time that they can spend with the individual children (and every year NACT keep telling us that one size doesn’t fit all and then they force one size on all) thus decreasing the teaching.

          Charter schools don’t work either. Again, they’ve been tried and they’ve, overall, failed.

          This is the evidence but you’ll go on saying that these failed policies are great simply because they come from NACT.

    • Anne 7.3

      So untrained teachers help children to learn. Why don’t you go to the US of A and join the Tea Party Fisiani? That’s about the right level of ignorance and stupidity. You’ll love it – amongst your own kind.

      Oh and take Mark with you.

      • Macro 7.3.1

        You never know – they might learn something! :)

      • Mark 7.3.2

        The greatest teachers are parents. What training have they had? The highest percentage excellence on NCEA2 is home schooled kids.

        • NickS 7.3.2.1

          :roll:

          Duh, if you’ve only got a few kids to teach it’s a lot easier to invest enough time to ensure high grades, plus the MoE provides fairly good home and distance learning material and support. On the other hand, a teacher has to deal with 25+ kids, with varying skill and socialisation levels and the odd undiagnosed behavioural/neurological issue and disability or disabilities (neurological fun times come in groups…). Herding them isn’t straightforward, nor is teaching them. Thus the comparison you’re trying to make is rather stupid…

          • Mark 7.3.2.1.1

            It’s rather more simple than that. We know kids are failing, we know teachers effectiveness makes the difference. What we don’t have is a mechanism to get shot of the ineffective ones, even if we do know who they are.

            It’s teacher unions who are failing the kids, not the Nats, because they are protecting the bad apples.

            • NickS 7.3.2.1.1.1

              It’s teacher unions who are failing the kids, not the Nats, because they are protecting the bad apples.

              You keep saying this, but not providing any evidence to back it up.

              As for weeding out those who can’t teach, there’s this thing called “teachers college”.

              Also, in order to see why a particular student is failing, you need to actually look at why they’re failing. Is it an undiagnosed disability like dyslexia, is the student stressed the ever-loving fuck out via home life or bullying, or is the actual teaching approach or the teacher? There’s multiple factors to deal with, and to ignore them and go “it teh teachers!!1111!” just shows you as an ignorant fuckhead.

            • Craig Glen Eden 7.3.2.1.1.2

              “We know kids are failing” really who are these kids ? why are they failing ? who is “we’ Mark.
              What you have clearly shown on this post Mark is you have no idea about education or educating children.

              You are making a total fool of your self! Whats sad is you obviously have no idea what total shit you are typing. If you are on a School Board I pity the other members and staff who would have to tolerate your obvious ignorance.

            • Draco T Bastard 7.3.2.1.1.3

              We know kids are failing, we know teachers effectiveness makes the difference.

              No, what we know is that poverty makes the difference. Remove the poverty and most, if not all, of those failing children will disappear.

              • granted

                Draco, no empirical evidence from me….however, often I had considered that access to education would help alleviate poverty. Or is this a horse and cart sort of thing.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Education can only help if the people being educated have access to the resources needed to do something with that education. People in poverty invariably don’t.

                  But that’s not what I was getting at. The children of families in poverty have a great deal more stress and other negative factors to live with which impacts negatively upon their education meaning that they’re more likely to fail at that education.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Postgraduate students left stacking shelves

                  Uni grads flipping burgers…same pay as a school leaver doing the same job but with $30,000 more student debt

        • David H 7.3.2.2

          Mark

          As a parent I will teach my son the difference between right and wrong, I will teach him to read , and write to a reasonable level, and I will teach him to tell the truth. And I will teach him to respect his fellow man and the environment. Anything else I will leave to a TRAINED expert teacher. What I won’t teach him is how to become a loud mouthed supercilious shit head like you. And if your mates the NACTS completely fuck up the education system then I will scrimp and save to send him somewhere where he will be educated properly. and not the National way.

          Apart from this DNFTT

          • Mark 7.3.2.2.1

            Educated properly at a private school?

            • Colonial Viper 7.3.2.2.1.1

              Toff

            • David H 7.3.2.2.1.2

              No if necessary get him home schooled.. or Move overseas. But in all reality this is a moot point as Shonkey and his happy band of maniacs should be gone for good by then

          • jcuknz 7.3.2.2.2

            It strikes me that Mark is a sensibile and serious parent serving on his local school board and completely frustrated by the system which protects the very few less than adequate teachers, I suspect he has just one in his school and the board is powerless to do anything about that person, either by retraining or dismissal.

            That he keeps going despite the childish personal insults that Lprent tells us is par for the blog merely shows what a cesspool blogs can be unless moderated properly and the frustration Mark is causing to writers without the words to shut him up. LOL but sad really.

    • Bored 7.4

      Actually Fisi, I agree with you that Charter schools will be popular with aspiring parents who want to see their children succeed. They will however be dissappointed by the results.

      You might stop and ask yourself, why would these parents want charter schools? I suspect tthey would opine that the state system is failing them: does that automatically mean the state system is wrong? I suspect not, more likely it is being made to go wrong by the same people proposing charter schools, an underfunding government.

      • Mark 7.4.1

        The government is underfunding education? Rubbish, never has more been spent on education.

        • Colonial Viper 7.4.1.1

          Hmmmmm…that’s certainly not true for early childhood education which National has downgraded and cut back.

          • Mark 7.4.1.1.1

            More was spent in the last 12 mths on ECE than ever before. On an individual child basis the taxpayer subsidies are;

            ECE $7600 per child per year.
            $5528 for primary
            $6733 for secondary

            Next, Colonel?

            • NickS 7.4.1.1.1.1

              lolwut?

              That’s for pre-school, not primary, secondary or tertiary education :roll:

            • Colonial Viper 7.4.1.1.1.2

              More was spent in the last 12 mths on ECE than ever before.

              And the $400M in cuts to ECE funding affecting 93,000 NZ children that you somehow conveniently forgot to include?

            • jcuknz 7.4.1.1.1.3

              Come now Mark are those figures adjusted for inflation?

        • NickS 7.4.1.2

          Education is always underfunded, particularly on staffing levels where the literature repeatedly indicates class sizes of 20 at most have the best outcomes.

          Then there’s school facilities, which unless it’s in an upper class area, are guaranteed to need work, or are absent, and as for science and technology stuff, frankly, I’ve seen field stations better equipped than most NZ high school science labs, and the tech and mechanical stuff is often using very old stuff and short on certain tools.

          • Mark 7.4.1.2.1

            Actually, decile 1 schools are very well funded. I’m on the board of one. I challenge you to find a Principal of one that disagrees.

            • NickS 7.4.1.2.1.1

              True, the funding system ensures D1 primary schools aren’t too strapped for cash (and lets face it, primary school costs aren’t that high unless buildings need replacing). However, I was talking about high schools, for which the situation is rather different…

            • Colonial Viper 7.4.1.2.1.2

              Actually, decile 1 schools are very well funded. I’m on the board of one.

              You should let your follow Board members know how much of a hater and detractor of teachers you are.

              Tell me, how many times have you suggested to your school that they investigate taking on unqualified teachers?

      • prism 7.4.2

        It would help the parents of those children who might attend charter schools, if they could see a clear path to entering the work force for their children. It’s possible then to work to a plan to pass certain subjects that are appropriate and stay committed.

        The word protean comes to mind for the situation of youngsters in our present set-up. All very confused and often full of false promise of jobs. After all that education nobody wants you, what’s the use must go through many young minds.

        There are already sports academies that offers the athletically oriented training to hone their talents. And that also teaches the work ethic and self discipline that everyone has to be able to apply. I think the government might be thinking of these. We know that people have different learning approaches, one is kinetic, a physical approach, then aural and visual so perhaps effort in charter schools will be able to go into directing the youngster to the right approach for their learning style.

        • David H 7.4.2.1

          Well when Macca’s and Bk’s start doing the charter school thing, then there’s your career path. Straight to a low paying slave job.

          • NickS 7.4.2.1.1

            Heh.

            Nah, that’s Destiny Church’s gig, to churn out peanut accepting missionaries ;)

            BK and Macca’s will just skim off the ones who escape and don’t go to another school.

        • NickS 7.4.2.2

          Uh?

          All we really need vis high-schools is better funded career guidance to help kids work out what areas they might want to get into and actually be good enough at to get a job. They still need basic academic skills though, particularly reading comprehension and critical analysis, along with basic maths and science101 in order to not only function in a job, but also to less prone to PR bullshit and scams. Then there’s general socialisation and citizenship stuff…

        • lenore 7.4.2.3

          “….If they could see a clear path to entering the work force for their children”

          That’s what the new vocational pathways will assist with – students will be able to have vocational profiles from the credits they are getting while they are doing NCEA and it is linked to 6 industry pathways; social and community services, construction and infrastructure; manufacturing and technology; service industries, primary industries and other pathways.

          It’s to make the system clearer for the student, parents and employers and been a joint initiative between education and industry

          They have been launched and their is heaps of information out there about them

          • prism 7.4.2.3.1

            lenore 7 42 3
            Sounds good. I’ve heard these pathways mentioned and my heart leapt. But I don’t want to get too excited, we have had these before and then the programmes seem to drop away. And we need more business mentors and tax incentives for new business, and venture capital encouragement, and tax grants for each new employee taken on. Government doing solidly positive things, taking responsibility and running it, not leaving it to privagte biz, agencies contracted with little oversight from gum-mint . Not just sitting on fur-lined bums tapping away at grand plans on keyboards as I am now, without the fur.

            • lenore 7.4.2.3.1.1

              the vocational pathways are profiles to make better contextual sense of where the NCEA credits and quals can lead HOWEVER – what we need are bloody jobs so that young people can follow their pathway. All we have are hammering welfare reforms but not the jobs and I mean decent full time jobs not the precarious casualisation that is going on out there that people are just supposed to fit in with. Also bring in school lunches so kids are able to concentrate on stomachs full on nutritious food. If I can’t concentrate on an empty stomach how the hell can kids? And let’s focus on the kids not what the parents are doing /not doing.

    • mike e 7.5

      Tag team trool Fisanal are the charter schools going to feed house parent those children as well?
      Children coming to school from cold dysfunctional homes where they are not fed or clothed properly where a bashing is the norm are not going to listen to a teacher who can’t bash them!

      Poverty is the problem up to 270,000 children lives being blighted now recognised as a $ 10 billion dollar drag on the economy!
      Blaming it on the teachers is a pathetic distraction by the the right wing to avoid doing anything except count beans beaned brained bean counters!

  8. Tazirev 8

    DNFTT

  9. chris73 9

    Anything that helps to smash the teacher unions can only be a good thing. This way educating children might actually be at the forefront rather then the current which is to protect teachers at all costs.

    • KJT 9.1

      You are worried about Teachers?

      A Manager and board in Auckland just cost their employers 34 million dollars and counting.
      Havn’t been sacked yet.

      • KJT 9.1.1

        Why am I in moderation?

        [lprent: No obvious reason. I have to depart to go and admire babies but I will examine the issue later if it persists. If you have a dynamic IP then disconnect and reconnect. You could have picked up the IP used by a badddddd person ]

    • mike e 9.2

      chris 73 if we could make sure maori and pacific islanders were fed properly like some schools do
      ie John Campbell Friday 7 September.
      WE would have the best education system in the world by a long way our teachers are the best in the world continually under funded we spend less on teachers and education than most countries so you are just one of keys little ‘house maids’.
      Just spieling out propaganda undermining our education system.
      Facts don’t come into it for you and your ilk.
      A lot of our teachers are paying out of their own pockets to feed malnourished children.
      When I was growing up in this country poverty only existed overseas but now after 30 years of neo liberal BS poverty is continuing to get worse.
      The right wing redneck bullies and their subservient snivelling little toe rags like you are the problem.

      • chris73 9.2.1

        Remind me how many terms Labour have been in power for over the last 30 years.

        • mike e 9.2.1.1

          neo liberals Chris73 labour did reduce child poverty by aprox 25% down from20% to 14% last term but not good enough.
          Now child poverty is up to 25%.
          50% among Maori
          40% among Pacific Islanders
          Targeting policy would fix the problem better and sooner but the racist red necks kicked up such a stink when policy like this was last put forward.

        • Draco T Bastard 9.2.1.2

          Labour are almost as neo-liberal as NACT and less authoritarian and mike e charge was that neo-liberalism was the problem. In other words, Labour is part of the problem.

          • mike e 9.2.1.2.1

            So DTB how are you going to change the majority of voters perceptions 70 to 80% of voters who turn out vote for these parties.

            • Draco T Bastard 9.2.1.2.1.1

              Start a new narrative.

            • Colonial Viper 9.2.1.2.1.2

              So DTB how are you going to change the majority of voters perceptions

              No no no. Do the math properly.

              You only need to change the perception of 1 in 10 major party voters.

              Piece of piss

    • prism 9.3

      chris73
      Anything that is against collective controlling groups is what you want is it chris73. So you come to this blog and put this rubbish forward knowing that it’s the opposite of what most people believe. You’re a waste of time, don’t do anything positive for society, just try to tear at it so that individuals are left alone clawing their way up if they can. In other words individualistic not using the combined wisdom of the group to achieve more, and attempt to control standards and be accountable to others.

      Interesting that the above is under moderation? For what?

    • lenore 9.4

      Have you actually ever been round teachers? They are actually often quite a conservative bunch. I am just imagining some of the teachers I am around and think it is hilerious that people think of them as socialist unionists. I WISH!!!!

      Getting back to the focus around qualified teachers – while it is not perfect, teacher registration gives some form of benchmark around what is best practice. In my job I have met plenty of people who think they should be teachers (and don’t want to go to the effort or cost of training). Now some of them would be ok but the majority – you would not want your child near – what their perception of their abilities is not objective. If we do allow un qualified people to “teach” our children, who is going to ensure they are up to standard. Unfortunately if we look to ERO, they like so many govt organisations are short of the staff to do so do great depth. At least teacher registration is the first benchmark and then from their, on going teacher appraisals and on going registration ensures that we have a consistent measure for best practice

  10. irascible 10

    Excuse me chris73. Are you living on planet earth or are you coming from planet NACT, a planet that disconnected itself from reality several moons ago? The Unions are there to ensure that the conditions of service necessary to deliver education to the children are present and that the members of the union can perform effectively. The number of Union meetings I’ve sttended at which the members debate and argue for the adequate funding for, the developmet of resource bases, etc, etc needed to deliver the curriculum designed by Ministry officials and legislated for by MPs are countless as, for many members, the education of the future generations is paramount in all their thinking and activities.
    Ill informmed opining by you, chris73, fisiani and Mark add little to the debate on the critical evaluation of the ACT inspired Charter School introduction to the NZ education system.

  11. chris73 11

    So in other words “we know best don’t you dare argue with us”

    I remember when Doctors had the same attitude, the we know better then anyone else attitude. The teacher unions are trying to get the same feeling.

    “We are the only ones who care about children, nobody else could possibly understand much less have a worthwhile opinion unless they’re in the teaching union (especially not parents)”

    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      So in other words “we know best don’t you dare argue with us”

      It’s more than likely that the professionals in the field actually do know best. Certainly going to know more than the average Joe sitting in their home.

      It’s why we have professionals.

      • felix 11.1.1

        Or the average chris for that matter.

        But what grinds my gears is those bloody mechanics, with all their “We know more than you about fixing cars”.

        The arrogance of it. Disgusting.

      • chris73 11.1.2

        Something about the national womans hospital “unfortunate experiment” comes to mind, of course this is different because the teaching union wouldn’t dream of doing/allowing anything untoward…

        • Colonial Viper 11.1.2.1

          Interesting you bring up National Womens “unfortunate experiment”. Was the recommendation from that to start using less qualified or even unqualified doctors?

          Or are you just a dick?

        • McFlock 11.1.2.2

          Just what aspect of teachers union behaviour are you likening to randomly withholding treatment for fatal disease, contrary to current medical knowledge?
             
          Insisting on smaller class sizes and that teachers be qualified to teach is hardly comparable.

        • rosy 11.1.2.3

          Something about the national womans hospital “unfortunate experiment” comes to mind

          Certainly does. And it’s NAct running the experiment/s with the teachers and parents looking for tried and tested methods and operations to continue and expand proven results.

    • irascible 11.2

      Actually teachers don’t claim they know bet. They just argue from a well informed position supported by empirical evidence which upsets those who argue from a pool of ready supplied memes.

  12. Dv 12

    one of the problems is how are you going to find out that the untrained, unregistered teachers are going to do a good job in the Charter schools?

    By testing them on your kids.
    (hint Training involved short practicums.)

    How about setting up a charter hospitals?

  13. captain hook 13

    the thing to remember is people like john banks are bullies and they believe their own thoughts to be facts.
    all in all a very dangerous combination.
    they cant really do anything but bully because they have money and thats it.

  14. captain hook 14

    so are charter skools going to offer courses like how to make a brothel pay and posing in front of myeeeeeee hardly davison?

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    frogblog | 30-10
  • Ghost Dancing?
    Ghost Dancing circa 1890: With the buffalo effectively exterminated, the material basis for the Native American cultures of the Great Plains was destroyed. The Ghost Dance, it was believed, would reconstitute the basis for an independent indigenous existence. Has the...
    Bowalley Road | 30-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Way back in March, 2012,  I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18...
    Frankly Speaking | 30-10
  • WINZ: Bureaucratic Befuddlement and Confustication
    Yeah, I know. Confusticate isn’t a word, unless you’re quoting Urban Dictionary. Definition: This word is the coalescing of the English words “confuse” and “complicate”. It refers to anything of, or relating to the process of being both confused and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • The idiot
    Here’s why this Steffan Browning/Ebola/Homeopathy thing is a really big deal for the Green Party. (a) Historically they’ve been stereotyped by their opponents as a bunch of nutters (b) The main focus of the party for the past five years –...
    DimPost | 30-10
  • The idiot
    Here’s why this Steffan Browning/Ebola/Homeopathy thing is a really big deal for the Green Party. (a) Historically they’ve been stereotyped by their opponents as a bunch of nutters (b) The main focus of the party for the past five years –...
    DimPost | 30-10
  • Climate change and New Zealand cities
    Environmentalists sometimes have an uneasy relationship with cities. Because they concentrate a lot of people and economic activity in relatively small places, they also concentrate a lot of negative environmental effects. All that concrete, all that energy being consumed, the...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • Got a mystery? Just ask John!
    Tuesday, November 24, 2009John Key has learned the identity of the entertainer guilty of an indecency charge through the grapevine of people circumventing the suppression order....
    Pundit | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD....
    CTU | 30-10
  • Blocked
    It is safe to say before the election last month I was fairly prolific in the blogosphere as we headed to an election. Was it because there was a glimmer of hope for we on this side of the coin?...
    My Thinks | 30-10
  • Blend with the Bruntletts Group Ride
    While Vancourerites Chris and Melissa Bruntlett are here for their Auckland Conversation talk, Generation Zero, Frocks on Bikes and TransportBlog have organised a slow, family friendly ride around the city centre. The map is below. The ride is designed to be self-directed so...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • New research quantifies what’s causing sea level to rise
    There have been a number of studies that have come out recently on ocean warming and sea-level rise. Collectively, they are helping scientists coalesce around an emerging understanding of climate change and its impact on the Earth. Most recently, a...
    Skeptical Science | 30-10
  • Rawshark – Is she Maori or Pakeha?
    Cameron Slater blamed someone for being behind the hacking of his emails and passing them on to Nicky Hager. And then he named someone he thought was Rawshark. John Key says someone told him who Rawshark is but he ain’t telling. @B3nRaching3r is...
    Te Putatara | 30-10
  • Employment law: it’s toasted
    In an early episode of Mad Men, when the company’s going for the Lucky Strike account, sleazebag antihero Don Draper asks the client exactly how cigarettes are made. They talk through the process, mentioning the tobacco is toasted – and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • Owners of the wind
    Thirty-odd years ago in the Kingdom of Denmark lived some brave people who disliked nuclear power and loved renewable energy. Determined to keep their country clean and safe, they began building their own wind turbines. Today, thanks to these passionate...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • TPPA Bulletin #58
    NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION 8 NOVEMBER 2014 Auckland, Hamilton, Raglan, Tauranga, Rotorua, Gisborne, New Plymouth, Napier, Palmerston North, Levin,Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin,Invercargill. REGIONAL UPDATES Auckland (1:00 pm at Aotea Square): speakers include Robyn Malcolm (Actors Equity), Bunny McDiarmid (Greenpeace), Dayle Takitimu...
    NZ – Not for sale | 30-10
  • Seabed mining: drums in the deep
    Out on the Chatham Rise, the ridge jutting into the waters off Christchurch and extending out beyond the Chathams, Chatham Rock Phosphate has a mining permit and is now seeking EPA approval for its project to mine phosphate for fertiliser,...
    Pundit | 30-10
  • Contact’s big solar buy-back drop bad news for Kiwis with solar
    The Green Party are calling for a law change to establish an independent umpire to set fair and reasonable buy-back rates after Contact Energy announced, from today, new small scale solar and wind generators will receive 50 percent less for...
    Greens | 01-11
  • John Key’s asset sales outed by his own Minister
    National needs to come clean about the motivations behind selling state houses after Paula Bennett's asset sale admission, said the Green Party today.On Saturday, Paula Bennett, the Minister for Social Housing admitted, in a televised interview, that the sale of...
    Greens | 01-11
  • James Shaw speaks on the four Bills formerly known as the Accounting Infras...
    The assurance industry is a critical component of our economic framework. The idea that there is a trusted independent watchdog of the public interest underpins investor confidence and ensures financial probity on behalf of our country's leading institutions. New Zealand...
    Greens | 31-10
  • ANZ needs to look after its workers after another super profit
    The ANZ bank needs to acknowledge the super profits it makes are coming at the expense of its workers, the Green Party said today.Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) 2014 full year results show a lift in performance...
    Greens | 31-10
  • James Shaw’s maiden speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • National’s “Auckland housing boom” a fizzer
    Falling Auckland consent numbers show the Government’s housing policy is going backwards contrary to wild claims by Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith that we are on the cusp of a massive construction boom, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Local job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Zero tolerance for forestry accidents a must
    The Government must adopt a zero tolerance approach to workplace accidents in the forestry sector to stop people being killed, Labour’s Forestry spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “It is time for the Government and the forestry sector to put an end...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Return to less holidays on the cards?
    John Key needs to lay his cards on the table regarding the Government’s intentions around holiday pay and annual leave entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “A day after National pushed through laws that take away the legal...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Forest Safety report first step in making our forests safe to work in
    Our forests are a very dangerous place to work. Between 2008 and 2013 there have been 32 fatalities and more than a thousand serious harm incidents in this industry. The Council of Trade Unions and First union have been doing...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Catherine Delahunty Speaks on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill
    Kia ora, Mr Assistant Speaker. He mihi nui ki te Whare Paremata. Welcome to the glorious 19th century, dressed up in the not-so-new flexibility-speak. At the final moment of this bill, let us drop the charade. The Government has a...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Ruataniwha Feds refuse to present a balanced view
    A bid to sell the Ruataniwha water project to Hawkes Bay farmers has turned in to an incredibly one sided affair, says Labours spokesperson on Water Meka Whaitiri.  “It’s being promoted as ‘Ruataniwha it’s now or never’ and it promises...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Worker’s rights dealt severe blow with Bill’s passing
    The passing of the Employment Relations Amendment Bill is another blow to workers' rights in New Zealand, the Green Party said today.This afternoon, National's Employment Relations Amendment Bill passed with the support of Act and United Future."This bill will force...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Barriers to reporting sex crimes must go
    Both the Government and police need to take action to ensure that, in future, sexual abuse victims know they will be taken seriously, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “The young women involved in the Roast Busters case, and...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    Greens | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Kevin Hague questions the Minister of Health on management of Katherine Ric...
    Is he satisfied that all conflicts of interest that arose by the head of Food and Grocery Council Katherine Rich being a member of the Health Promotion Agency were managed in accordance with the provisions of the Crown Entities Act...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Bennett parks numbers on social housing
    Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett admitted today that well over 1000 families have been subsidised through the accommodation supplement to stay in the Ranui campground, somewhere she has previously described as not the right place for children to be growing...
    Labour | 30-10
  • 50,000 sign petition against anti-worker law
    More than 50,000 Kiwis have signed Labour’s petition against the Government’s scrapping of tea break entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “That’s the equivalent of five people signing our petition every minute for a week. It shows the...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Address in Reply Debate – Dr Kennedy Graham on UN Security Council- 2...
    In the Speech from the Throne last week the Prime Minister identified the usual domestic goals for his Government. I counted 17. They are not my subject today. I wish instead to focus on matters beyond our shores. In the...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Climate change harming ocean health
    New Zealand is responsible for one of the largest areas of sea in the world – an area 14 times the size of our land area. The National Government is promising new marine protected areas legislation with a discussion document...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Key misled public over Jason Ede
    Information contained in a new chapter of the book Key: Portrait of a Prime Minister, that Jason Ede stopped working for the National Party on the night the book Dirty Politics was released, shows Mr Key and senior ministers hid...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Greenpeace report highlights better path for NZ agriculture
    A Greenpeace International report highlights a better way forward for New Zealand agriculture than the GE and chemical mutation technologies supported by Federated Farmers, and the National Government through its research funding packages, the Green Party said today. "This report...
    Greens | 29-10
  • BNZ post record profits while leaving savers vulnerable
    A small part of the $850 million record profit posted by the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) today needs to be set aside to protect savers' deposits in the future, said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman today.Dr Norman was...
    Greens | 29-10
  • RBNZ U-turn shows monetary settings were wrong
    The Reserve Bank's U-turn on interest rates today shows monetary policy settings were wrong and New Zealanders have suffered unnecessarily through the loss of jobs and having to pay higher interest rates, the Green Party said today.Reserve Bank Governor Graeme...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Ports must take responsibility for shameful death toll
    Port companies must step up and take responsibility for a shameful toll of seven deaths and 133 serious accidents in the past three years, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says. The frightening figures – released by the Rail, Maritime and Transport...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Please help me get my Feed the Kids Bill to Select Committee
    Last week I took over the Feed the Kids Bill that Hone Harawira had introduced to Parliament. If passed, my Bill will provide government-funded breakfast and lunch in all decile 1 and 2 schools. Hungry kids can’t learn and are...
    Greens | 29-10
  • TVNZ Outsourcing Pasifika and Maori Programmes
    I’ve always been a big fan of our state broadcaster and I’ve particularly liked their range of current events programmes. But after Friday’s announcement that TVNZ will be sacking up to 40 staff by contracting out the Pacific and Maori...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Labour urges iwi leaders to meet with National
    Labour’s Māori Caucus has called on iwi leaders and national Māori organisations to seek urgent meetings with the National Government to directly express their concerns about employment law changes which will harm Māori workers. In an open letter sent today...
    Labour | 29-10
  • ACC’s reputation needs fix, not glitz
    Restoring public trust and confidence in ACC will take a lot more than a new communications strategy or social media blitz, says Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Under National, ACC has come to be perceived as insensitive, difficult to deal...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Lessons to be learned from police investigation
    The outcome of the so-called Roast Busters case should not put victims off reporting sexual crimes, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “This case has been mishandled from the start. Within days of police initially saying no charges had...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Anti-worker legislation is anti-Pacifica
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, will go down in history as being part of a Government that harmed his own people through anti-worker legislation, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Pacific people are among...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • The Final Fifth: The Last Great Task for Progressive New Zealand.
    MOST OF NEW ZEALAND’S social problems are concentrated among those living at the margins of what is otherwise a relatively wealthy society. Recently released international data on child poverty has exposed an acutely stressed social strata encompassing roughly 20 percent...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Myth Busting Rape Boasters
    In just one week a case that galvanised a nation into discussing rape culture is now being reframed as mischievous teen hi-jinx. One year ago the Roast Busters case came to the attention of the media and the public. This...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Workers rights weakened by new laws – fightback needed
    The government’s changes to the employment laws are designed to weaken workers bargaining power – at both the individual and collective level.   30-day rule The old law required an employer with a collective agreement in place to employ new...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – Where are Labour Candidates on disability?
    For the few people who know me (hello Mum), I am proudly New Zealand’s first Autistic Spectrum Lawyer, as well as being the very bottom Candidate on the Labour Party List. (64 out of 64). Being honoured like this is...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Patrick Gower interviews Social Housing Minister
    Bennett says National could sell off “thousands” of state houses but Housing NZ will still be the “dominant force” in providing social housing in NZ....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • The Nation: Lisa Owen interviews Mike Moore & Chris Liddell
    Lisa Owen interviews NZ Ambassador to the US Mike Moore and corporate high-flyer Chris Liddell about the US midterm elections....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • David Parker event – the future of work, Sun 2 Nov
    Labour leadership candidate David Parker, an experienced lawyer and businessman as well as a former senior government cabinet minister in the Helen Clark Government, will join three prominent New Zealanders in a panel discussion on Sunday to address...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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