Anti-union rant in The Herald

Written By: - Date published: 12:43 pm, June 8th, 2015 - 72 comments
Categories: education, schools, Unions - Tags: , , ,

An anonymous editorial in The Herald this morning really is atrocious:

Mediocrity rules under school plan

More than two years have passed since the Government announced an impressive plan for improving schools by paying them to work more closely together. They were to form clusters under an executive principal and share their best staff who would be lead teachers in their subject. A pot of $349 million was added to the education budget.

This “impressive plan” had several problems with it. It takes the best teachers out of their classrooms and tangles them up in new layers of bureaucracy. It ignores certain fundamentals of good teaching (context and building and ongoing relationship). NZ principals described it as unworkable. It didn’t work in the UK. None the less, schools worked with the government in good faith to try and create a workable scheme.

Two years on, a watered down version of the plan appears to be getting under way. About 10 per cent of schools have formed “communities”, not clusters, to meet regularly, share information and compare data. The typical community includes just one or two secondary schools and the rest are intermediates and primaries. It looks like a vertical integration of feeder schools rather than the cross-fertilisation of education at each level that the original plan envisaged.

Hekia Parata must be disappointed with the 10 per cent uptake of her plans to date. She admits she is disappointed that Auckland Grammar, which had joined a community of schools, has since walked away. Headmaster Tim O’Connor said the group’s focus did not align with Grammar’s plans.

If 90% of schools have rejected the scheme they do so on the basis of an assessment of educational needs, not “interference” by unions. I’m guessing that Auckland Grammar is not exactly a hotbed of leftie liberal activisim. However, our editorialist feels compelled to conclude:

The original plan was not “just about money”, as the PPTA would have it. It was about promoting talent and spreading best practice. That is unlikely to happen without substantial incentives. But the union has prevailed. Mediocrity rules again.

No, protecting education from unworkable policy rules again. Yon anonymous Herald editorialist needs to get off their union-bashing bandwagon and spend some time in a classroom.


Want to know who is really attacking education? One of the comments below that editorial gives us some clues:

National has persistently weakened and undermined public education ever since taking office.

National burdened public schools with nonsense like *National Standards*, which crush curiosity, critical thinking, and the capacity to question authority, while delivering nothing more than training in literacy and numeracy.

National decreased funding to public schools while increasing taxpayer subsidies to the private schools their own children attend.

National cut funding for Adult Community Education.

National abolished student allowances for postgraduate students.

National undermined postgraduate study by limiting eligibility for student loans.

National stopped anyone aged over 55 from receiving student loan living costs.

National weakened university councils to silence criticism and dissent.

National are privatising, corporatising, and commercialising our education system.

National have so much contempt for education that they even appointed a creationist, John Banks, Associate Minister of Education.

National are undermining the public education system while funneling public funds to their corporate cronies, and care nothing about improving educational outcomes for children.

Parts of that are a bit strong for me, but overall it’s a pretty fair summary.

72 comments on “Anti-union rant in The Herald ”

  1. Macro 1

    Parts of that are a bit strong for me, but overall it’s a pretty fair summary.

    The sad fact is r0b – it’s true.
    National are doing everything in their power to reduce education in this country to a conveyor belt of training for industry – its a wonder any young person can think at all!
    http://www.lyricsfreak.com/p/paul+simon/kodachrome_20105962.html

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      Training people for industry? Not even that, I’m afraid. No-one wants to employ people who can’t think.

      They are training them to do well (or not) in tests, and the motive is profit – all those tests must be authored, and “improved” with endless “research”, and printed, and marked by “professional markers”.

      • Macro 1.1.1

        No you don’t want people who can think for themselves – you just want people who can follow orders, add up numbers, and write a sentence. Anything else – they might want to run the show themselves and we can’t have that can we!

  2. Gosman 2

    “…nonsense like *National Standards*, which crush curiosity, critical thinking, and the capacity to question authority”

    What absolute emotional tosh.

    All three of my kids are at school with National standards. I fail to see how their curiousity, critical thinking and capacity to question authority has been impacted let alone ‘crushed’.

    Care to show how these are being crushed or do you simply want to take us at your word? A good start would be to show a collapse in performances in areas not covered by National standards.

    • mpledger 2.1

      There are subtle ways that schools are changing – the schools I know about do their first block of the day on literacy and the second block on numeracy. One school moved their morning bell times so they could do more numeracy, another school moved their technology program from morning to afternoon to, I suspect, give more time for literacy.

      And the literacy and numeracy tends to be more about leaning facts and learning how to do things. They are not about being creative or being enquiring e.g. like in art or science.

      • Gosman 2.1.1

        This is quite possibly correct and it is also quite possibly be having a detrimental effect on other elements of learning. However it is still not evidence for the view that curiosity, critical thinking, and the capacity to question authority are being crushed.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1

          Yeah, actually, it is. When you remove teaching of curiosity and critical thinking from schools to replace it with rote learning then those things aren’t learned by the students.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2

      I expect it’s a prediction based on the failure – complete, abject, miserable failure – of similar centre-right dogma everywhere else in the known universe it’s been tried.

      You failed the test.

      • Naturesong 2.2.1

        Undermining and openly attacking teachers is not centre anything.

        There are stark examples in history where anti-intellectuals in power have consistently attacked and demonised teachers.
        Very few of those societies had happy endings

        • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.1.1

          Sure – it’s just they’re calling themselves the centre-right, and apparently it’s “centre right” to undermine collective bargaining and weaken health and safety laws and commit troops to Iraq and pass legislation that undermines the rule of law.

          I’d be ashamed to be a member.

      • Lloyd 2.2.2

        What’s “centre” about this neoliberal crap?

        The Labour Party is central.

        The MSM, if it was any good, should be screaming blue murder that the right-wing ideologues are trying to bend the minds of our poor innocent children using ideas that are based on fantasy. Similar fantasies that drove the third Reich.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.1

          The way I see it, they call themselves the centre right, and they want to weaken worker protections even further, flog everything off to their mates, and refuse to repair their rental accommodation despite infant mortality.

          Why argue with them: that’s what the centre right is, a grasping pack of bought theives and sociopaths.

          Who’d want to be associated with that?

    • dukeofurl 2.3

      Gosman, so you are happy that this sort of tosh is being floated around under the banner of national standards ( in reading and writing)

      “In order to make an overall teacher judgment as to whether their students are meeting the standard for their year, teachers will use several sources of information. When making overall teacher judgments, it is not enough for teachers to consider how well a student is reading and writing. Teachers need to specifically consider how well each student is using reading and writing as interactive tools to enable them to learn in all curriculum areas.

      Or we can look at the maths ‘standard’
      This is for end of year 8 – end of primary school

      “Andre has ordered 201 tennis balls. They are sold in cans of 3 balls.

      How many cans should he receive?

      Passed the year 8 standard if you get that brain teaser right, that is again subject to ‘overall teacher judgement’ from above.

      Good to know Gosman your kids education is being dumbed down, and you are delirious happy,

      • Gosman 2.3.1

        That is not what the author was stating though. Whether Natiional standards lead to worse outcomes in the areas they are focused on is different to stating they crush curiosity, critical thinking, and the capacity to question authority in all aspects of education.

        • dukeofurl 2.3.1.1

          That may have been high brow views for primary students, but in general you dont have any criticism for ‘National standards’ that arent national or standards.

          • Gosman 2.3.1.1.1

            Do you think what is being touted as National standards crush curiosity, critical thinking, and the capacity to question authority in school children? If so, why?

            • repateet 2.3.1.1.1.1

              What it is about National Standards which crushes curiosity, critical thinking and the capacity to question authority, is the same for children as it is for teachers.

              That is the fact the school, the whole system, the organisation, is geared to National Standards. Schools will be judged, teachers will be judged on National Standard results. Alternative approaches, creative approaches, individual approaches will be gone as the mediocre, the safe middle of the road is sought. The narrowing and dumbing down of the system has the official stamp of approval and the support of those too thick to see what Tolley and Parata have done to future generations.

              Teachers won’t have to worry about the bright kids who can easily reach the standards, spending quality time with extending them is not going to get the ones just below the line “up to standard”.

              If you are really interested and can be bothered searching through this link and have the intelligence to understand some of the subtleties of the laments, you may gain some understanding that the field is quite complex.
              https://networkonnet.wordpress.com

              The subtleties and complexities of kids’ learning have been ignored by the Neanderthal Sisters Tolley and Parata and are certainly beyond the cretinous Herald editorial writer.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.4

      What absolute emotional tosh.

      http://www.salon.com/2013/04/18/testing_is_killing_learning/
      http://www.psmag.com/books-and-culture/kills-creativity-standardized-testing-children-69137
      http://dianeravitch.net/2013/12/30/how-the-standardized-testing-monster-destroys-creativity-and-the-joy-of-learning/

      All three of my kids are at school with National standards. I fail to see how their curiousity, critical thinking and capacity to question authority has been impacted let alone ‘crushed’.

      That’s probably because you’re too stupid to realise how dysfunctional excessive testing is.

      Yeah, you’re the one that’s talking “absolute emotional tosh” as per usual.

    • Simon Johnston 2.5

      I’m sure your anecdotal experience trumps the overall reality. Gotta love how you attack the sentence as “emotional”, then pretend that your kids are OK to be used as an empirical data set. Critical thinking is not a value you subscribe to I take it.

    • The Murphey 2.6

      I don’t believe you have ever mentioned the kids before….Let’s see

      1. You claim to be a business owner
      2. You have claimed to be from or live in Hamilton
      3. Now you claim to have kids

      Yet all the while the style of writing under the Gosman handle exhibits consistent and obvious change such as it has again today

    • Crashcart 2.7

      Hey Gos. Recommend you have a watch of this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J6lyURyVz7k. I know he is a comedian but he has just won a peabody and is considered the top investigative journalist in the USA at the moment.

      I realise it is in a US context however it does give some insight into the failings of standardized testing.

  3. John 3

    Getting staff from high performing schools to help at low performing schools is a primary reason given as to why Shanghai has risen to the top of world PISA rankings.

    The tragedy is that unions are more interested in keeping poorly performing staff anonymous, than they are in improving their performance.

    And the cherry picking of funding changes to education, shows the desperation to mislead, when overall education funding has increased massively above inflation $9.5B to $13B – that’s $2.5B a year ahead of what it would be with just an inflation adjustment.

    As for the hysterical doomsday nonsense about National Standards – that’s coming from somewhere in lala land.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1

      “Keeping poorly performing staff anonymous”.

      Actually, that’s called the Privacy Act.

      As for improvements, you don’t in fact know anything about education in New Zealand, eh.

    • r0b 3.2

      overall education funding has increased massively above inflation $9.5B to $13B

      Not according to independent economic analysis:
      https://www.greens.org.nz/news/press-releases/national-cut-38-billion-health-education-and-environment-spending

      National to cut $3.8 billion from health, education and environment spending
      Russel Norman MP on Tuesday, August 19, 2014 – 09:30

      Findings in an independent analysis of the Government’s books, commissioned by the Green Party, reveal National is planning multi-billion dollar cuts to health, education, and environment spending over the next three years.

      The analysis, prepared by Ganesh Nana of independent economic consultancy BERL, shows that National is stripping funding, in real terms, to the health, education and environment sectors to the tune of at least $3.837 billion over the next three years.

      • dukeofurl 3.2.1

        Not surprising that nationals budgets so called numbers are a crock of shit.

        Bill says this years deficit is $684 million ( very optimistic), in reality he is planning to borrow over $6 billion (that’s 10x the headline budget figure) to pay for it all.

        Next year its even more borrowed, when he says he has a ‘surplus coming’

      • John 3.2.2

        You can look at facts – what was ACTUALLY SPENT in 2009 ($9.5B) and what is being spent this year ($13B) – a 37% increase when inflation over the same period was 11%

        Health has ACTUALLY gone from $11b in 2008 to $15B this year – again, a rise about 2 times faster than inflation.

        Or you can look at what’s laughably called “independent research”. BERL has made itself a laughing stock in the industry – not least when the Greens paid for “independent research” that added up all the possibly negative financial aspects of power generator sales, but to be completely misleading , it specifically excluded BERL looking at any positive financial aspects.

        Early childhood funding has ACTUALLY gone from $860m in 2008 to $1628m in 2015 – nearly 100% increase – yet and the Greens are desperately trying to lie to and mislead the public about cuts.

        Using “independent” research paid for by the Green Party, instead of facts from Core Crown expenditure, is like paying a crystal ball gazer to tell you what your salary is, instead of looking at your pay slip.

        • lprent 3.2.2.1

          Health has ACTUALLY gone from $11b in 2008 to $15B this year – again, a rise about 2 times faster than inflation.

          I realize that you may have a blindspot when it comes to thinking about things that you haven’t been given to say. (ie I think that you are a mindless parrot).

          However, shouldn’t you consider comparing the requirement of health against the increase in need? In this case the age and health demographics. Measuring spending against the degradation of a currency seems completely pointless. What you should be measuring is the shortfall of inflation removed spending against the demand for the services. Bearing in mind how fast our population is aging, National are really underfunding health services by about 2-3% per year.

          • Gosman 3.2.2.1.1

            Doesn’t that just go to show we need to look to get better value out of our health spend. Otherwise the share of expenditure of Health will get more and more. Also I’m not sure why Education demand should be rising hugely given the changing demographic is against the shcool age population. Can you explain why we should be looking to be spending even more in this area?

            • lprent 3.2.2.1.1.1

              Ah so you are a supporter of not signing the TPPA? Because that will cause the single biggest increase in health costs that we have ever seen when they root the cost savings in Pharmac. Bearing in mind I can’t see any benefits for NZ’s income from the TPP, that will cause a real budget problem.

              Successive governments since the 1980s have been trying to squeeze the health system for more efficiencies. Most of those efficiencies were gained under Labour governments because as usual the National led governments tend to ineffectually look at punitive changes that usually cause more problems and cost more than they solve.

              But at some point long past, the cuts in effective budget to the health systems started cutting into muscle rather than causing efficiencies. Now that the demographics have caught up with them by going exponential, I’m rather expecting that the Nats lack of attention to primary care will as well.

              You could always look at the obvious explanations for the schools.

              Because there was a bulge in births from 2000-2004, and those kids swell each part of the system as they pass through.
              And because kids and young adults are spending more time at school.

              Both cause the facilities to be expanded to meet peak requirements. That same thing happens on this site. I have to scale it for peak capacity of 150k page views a day rather than the usual 15-20k

        • Tracey 3.2.2.2

          If you object to politicians deliberately lying and misleading the public I assume you don’t support the current government?

    • dukeofurl 3.3

      That Shanghai thing with PISA is a crock. Why dont we have a special entry for ONE city that can compete against whole countries as well.
      A lot of Children in Shanghai are excluded from the academic high school system because of Hukuo, which restricts people from the countryside access to city social systems such as schooling.
      You can be born in a large city as a child but your familys ‘ancestral’ hukou is still a rural province. First generation migrants often leave their kids behind rural areas.

    • adam 3.4

      Any chance you can site some sources for your assertions there John? Especially the one about the unions I wonder if you ever heard of the education review office? http://ero.govt.nz/

      Yes, John some evidence to back up your baseless assertions, would be fine and dandy.

    • mpledger 3.5

      Shanghai has risen to the top of the rankings because they don’t test every child only every student. Migrant children to Shanghai don’t get an education there as they are supposed to attend school in the village their parents come from. There are about 500,000 such children in Shanghai.

      http://www.bloomberg.com/bw/articles/2013-04-04/chinese-education-the-truth-behind-the-boasts

      Also China is notorious for cheating –

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      China catches 2,440 cheating students in high-tech scam

      Nor do parents always frown upon such scams. In 2012, when authorities tried to stop cheats in the city of Zhongxiang in Hubei, a riot broke out involving parents angry that their children were being singled out when everyone was cheating.
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      http://edition.cnn.com/2014/10/28/world/asia/china-exam-cheats/

      • Ch_ch chiquita 3.5.1

        To do well in the PISA testing all you have to do is teach to pass the test and allow only the high achievers to take the test.
        The outcome? A society of non-thinkers with limited knowledge.

    • Getting staff from high performing schools to help at low performing schools is a primary reason given as to why Shanghai has risen to the top of world PISA rankings.

      Citation please, John?

      Because that sounds mightily like BS to me.

      And links to your others claims would be nice as well, as I suspect you’re not giving us the complete picture. The term “cherry picking” is appropriate.

  4. stever 4

    Sounds like Parata is anonymously writing Herald editorials…judging by the whining and selective facts usage and plain lies…very National minister !!!

  5. happynz 5

    You would have some suspicion of the ratings if you spent some time in China, or indeed other Asian nations. Cheating and fudging of data so as to meet the “standards” is par for the course. The temptation to do so is the monetary reward handed out by governmental cronies with no educational expertise whatsoever. Give these cronies easily digestible data (never mind if the data is rubbish) and then there’s backslapping all around as bonuses are dispersed.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      Cheating and fudging of data so as to meet the “standards” is par for the course.

      Sounds like what National would do. See as evidence:

      1. SkyCity convention centre
      2. Sheep to Saudi businessman
      3. Anything Bill English says that has numbers in it
      4. Bill English’s home address in Wellington Dipton
      5. etc etc

    • Colonial Rawshark 5.2

      China is forecasting 7.0% growth this coming year. And it will be achieved, to the exact decimal point. Why wouldn’t you believe the numbers coming out of there?

      • dukeofurl 5.2.1

        Easy, because the different provinces will make sure they are ‘all above average’

        Party functionaries know the ‘plan must be exceeded’

  6. mpledger 6

    The schools in my area were already meeting and doing stuff together well before National’s policy came up anyway – out of school time.

    Parents really don’t like it when their children’s teacher is away from the classroom (or the head teacher isn’t in the school) for any length of time because student learning and behaviour goes downhill when things become unsettled. It really has to be some benefit to the school to have a teacher/principal go somewhere else for parents to buy into it but all it appears to be helping is outcomes in the receiving school (maybe) and a worse outcome for the sending school. I am not surprised there is no buy-in from sending schools.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.1

      Oh, come on, it helps a few teachers pay packet as well.

      • mpledger 6.1.1

        And the other teachers get the same money but pick up the slack when the teacher is off somewhere else.

        • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.1

          Well, you know, we all must make sacrifices…

          …for the benefit of the few that National picks.

  7. Tracey 7

    Meanwhile a school has toxic mould that can’t be dealt with cos these things take time. I guess they haven’t heard of bleach and opening a few windows?

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11461440

    “Mr Wright said the issues had been going on for at least 10 years.

    The ministry’s head of infrastructure Kim Shannon said safety was always its first priority, and it acted immediately when schools told it there was a safety risk.

    “We understand Paul Wright’s frustration and that people want us to move quicker but any building project, whether a $400,000 new home or multimillion-dollar school building, takes time to plan and build and we have to make sure everything is done right the first time,” Mrs Shannon said.”

    Cos, it’s all about the children, right MOE spokesperson and Parata?

    Just deliver them some fucking BLEACH!!!!

    “Property reports about Clayton Park buildings, the first from 2011, note their faulty design, made worse by poorly implemented repairs in 2009.

    It says the school has “significant weathertightness issues”. Asbestos was also rife.

    Unlike the school’s admin block and gym – which were demolished in 2013 then replaced at a cost of $1.4 million – the 1979 buildings are too old to be considered under “leaky building” funding schemes.

    The school therefore has to wait for a ministry grant to rebuild. Its community does not have the ability to raise enough funds for new premises.

    In the meantime, it is able to partially maintain classrooms with support from the ministry – patching the roof or “drying out” areas when lab tests indicated high levels of mould or spores.”

  8. Gosman 8

    What would be interesting is if Labour decides to make removal of National Standards a key policy for the next election. Given that is seems to be very popular amongst parents I suspect this is one area of change introduced by National which will be staying.

    • Sable 8.1

      I’m a parent and I see very little in our dysfunctional education system to be happy about. Fees, low expectations (especially with regards to mathematics) and a propaganda based standards system that in no way reflects reality.

      • mpledger 8.1.1

        Don’t buy into the NZI report about kids not doing rote learning etc. Kids do heaps of rote learning – it’s just called “basic facts” nowadays. In another forum there were parents driven mental by schools insistence on “basic facts” and time based drills. Some of the schools do it outside of class time using systems such as mathletics.

        Compared to my day, kids spend more time doing what seems like lower level stuff than it ramps up quickly at college because the kids have a good base.

    • dv 8.2

      ” Given that is seems to be very popular amongst parents
      got any evidence about that?

    • lprent 8.3

      Given that is seems to be very popular amongst parents…

      That isn’t a given. I haven’t seen anything that indicates that is the case. What I have seen is some comments by National’s numerical illiterates claiming that indifference is support. Which it isn’t.

      Link please.

      • Gosman 8.3.1

        Notice I stated ‘Seems to be very popular’. This is my opinion based on the fact that National campaigned on it and that many parents I have spoke to about it seem to like it. However I’m quite willing to be shown to be wrong. The question remains whether Labour will stick to the current position about ditching them though. I suspect the opposition to them with be dropped once policy for the next election is being finalised.

        • McFlock 8.3.1.1

          So national campaigned on it, your selective anecdata supports it, therefore you suspect that national will not wish to change it. Very profound.

          Frankly, you’d be better off ditching the anecdata and simply going with ‘National campaigned on it, therefore they will not backtrack on it’.

          • mpledger 8.3.1.1.1

            I’ve heard parents say they hate reports based on national standards because it’s taken the place of the personal stories about kids – how they are getting on in class, what are their special attributes (kindness, comedy), how they are socialising etc. The kind of stuff that for kids who are “at standard” or “below standard” lifts the hearts of their parents.

            Some schools still do that but some schools just do National Standards.

            • Tracey 8.3.1.1.1.1

              The enormous paperwork-load means that many teachers are using a copy and paste method of reporting. People forget that teachers teach, have school yard duties and meetings from 8am to 430pm everyday. That means no time for paperwork. Hence the “holidays” they get. More and more experienced teachers I know are getting out. They are being replaced by inexperienced teachers. That pulls on the resource of another teacher to mentor them and is, of course, cheaper than getting an experienced teacher.

              • Draco T Bastard

                People forget that teachers teach, have school yard duties and meetings from 8am to 430pm everyday.

                My youngest sister teaches at a childcare centre and she’s been doing close to 60 hours per week as a part-time job. And, yes, from what I understand from what she’s said that was fully expected of her.

                More and more experienced teachers I know are getting out. They are being replaced by inexperienced teachers.

                Another sister of mine just got out of teaching. From what she said it was closer to constructively dismissed because she was considered to old despite the fact that she was teaching well and her students liked her. But, yeah, she was probably well paid and knew her rights whereas a younger teacher won’t – on both counts.

        • Tracey 8.3.1.2

          I know you are an evidence-based anti wrong-headed thinking type of person. Do you know what evidence the Government has based its new policy for Education with the clusters and so forth? I can’t find it anywhere.

    • Tracey 8.4

      Do you consider that by virtue of giving birth a person becomes an expert in teaching?

      If yes, do you wonder why victims don’t determine how the Police run? Or sick people how Hospitals are run?

      • Gosman 8.4.1

        In some places people do have more direct say over how the Police are run.

        • Grant 8.4.1.1

          Everyone’s an expert at teaching and highly critical of the profession until you suggest they stand in front of thirty kids for a day and try to get them to sit still, let alone learn something. At this point there is usually a stampede for the door in the general rush to avoid taking up the invitation.

          • Tracey 8.4.1.1.1

            Some people spend less time engaged with their children than their teachers. Actually many people.

        • Frank Macskasy 8.4.1.2

          “In some places people do have more direct say over how the Police are run.”

          Indeed. Especially in banana republics. They have the best police money can buy.

          So, Gosman, you were saying…?

        • Tracey 8.4.1.3

          Of course you had no obligation to answer my questions. And I see you exercised that right.

        • G-Rex 8.4.1.4

          Gosman, is user-pays police Act policy?

  9. Sable 9

    Why does anyone expect anything from the Herald? In my opinion its just another right wing broadsheet or is that bullsheet? Its so hard to tell the difference…..

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      And Teacher scheme numbers slashed – papers

      The Educational Institute has opposed the policy and is negotiating an alternative with the Education Ministry.

      Secretary Paul Goulter said the papers contained no proof the teacher and principal roles created by Investing in Educational Success would work.

      “Teachers I know all round the country have said ‘where’s the evidence for this model’.

      “We’ve gone back through this documentation and it just seems to be an article of faith that those roles were going to do the trick and we continue to ask, where is the evidence.”

      Which is how National do everything. They simply come up with an idea and believe that it will work – evidence be damned. Thing is, even once the evidence is in that their ideas don’t work they keep on doing them.

      • Tracey 10.1.1

        Gosman is an evidence-based guy. I will ask him if he has seen the government’s evidence for this.

  10. Clemgeopin 11

    The simple fact is National is a government that is primarily working for the wealthy with constant attacks on the workers, on the less privileged, on the poor, on the teachers, on the public schools and on the unions.

    At the same time, the children of the rich pricks attending rich private schools are pampered with huge resources, low numbers in classes, huge corporate donations and at the same time being given increasing tax payer public funding for the private benefit of the wealthy beneficiaries. Similarly, the privately profiting charter schools are pampered in the same manner, while the public schools are treated with contempt and used by National as their thrashing blocks.

    Look at the huge number of misdeeds, shocking behavior, poor conduct, blatant lies, dodgy deals, secret bribes, corrupt practices and misuse of funds indulged in by this government and their ministers during the last seven years to understand what their own real National Standards are.

  11. ScottGN 12

    And I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that the Herald editorial comes the same day that Radio NZ finally gets a response from the Ministry of Education to its OIA around this policy A YEAR AND A HALF after they made the application.

    • mpledger 12.1

      And the day after Whale Oil got himself into deep shit. They must have saved it up to release now, along with the editorial.

    • Tracey 12.2

      Yup “nothing to fear, nothing to hide” is another policy this government has for others but not itself.

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    I WAS A CAPTAIN COOK MAN, Grant Robertson was a Robbie Burns man. If you know anything about the great student pubs of Dunedin in the 1970s, 80s and 90s, those allegiances should tell you a lot. While I was at varsity, the “Cook” had a reputation for entertaining more ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 hours ago
  • Spray, spray, spray. There we go. Problem solved.
    Good old WD40. Is there nothing it can't do?Door squeaking? No problem, WD-40.Chewing gum stuck to the carpet? No worries, WD-40. Crayon marks? Spanner rusted up? Zipper won't undo? WD-40. WD-40. WD-40. It can even waterproof your shoes, I hear.(More Than A Feilding makes no warranty as to the efficacy of WD40 ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 hours ago
  • Taxpayers might be piste off, as govt lending to ski field is lifted to $50m – but more corporate ...
    Buzz from the Beehive The distributions of two dollops of corporate welfare have been proudly announced in government press statements today, but neither mentions or relates to the further taxpayer funding for ski fields on the skids. The government’s official website tells of $7 million being provided to boost aerospace ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    8 hours ago
  • The police know they suck at the OIA
    In recent years I've done a long series of posts poking into police OIA data and how it hides how badly the police suck at carrying out their obligations under the Act. And in a response to a recent request, it seems the police have been doing the same. A ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    8 hours ago
  • Gordon Campbell on National’s disdain for the Press debate
    Christopher Luxon evidently thinks this election is SO in the bag that he can afford to spurn the still-undecideds, the entire South Island, and the old Christchurch money that still reads the Press and shops at Ballantynes. We should all shed a tear for the National Party candidates across the ...
    10 hours ago
  • ELIZABETH RATA: Two Treaties of Waitangi – the Articles Treaty and the Principles Treaty
    Elizabeth Rate writes – There are two versions of the Treaty of Waitangi.  The first is the 1840 Treaty – the ‘Articles Treaty’. The second is what I call the ‘Principles Treaty’. It dates from 1986 when the principles were first included in legislation. Astonishingly, the parliamentary ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    13 hours ago
  • Tuesday’s Chorus: When it's ok to borrow to invest
    Mayor Wayne Brown, a Northland land-banker himself, appears relaxed about borrowing to invest in land but not in, for example, transport infrastructure and services. File photo: Lynn Grieveson/Getty ImagesTL;DR: You couldn’t make this stuff up. A mayor determined to cut council debt by selling shares in a monopoly business because ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    14 hours ago
  • How well do our Rapid Transit Stations perform
    As we invest in our public transport network, it’s critical that we not only invest in transformative projects like the City Rail Link, but that we also get as much use as we can out of the network we already have – which will also maximise the outcomes of those ...
    16 hours ago
  • Bryce Edwards: Ten reasons Labour’s support has halved
    The Labour Government was elected with 50 per cent of the vote three years ago, but current opinion polls show their vote could halve in this year’s election, which would be one of the biggest plunges in political history. Most polls have Labour on about 26 per cent. And the ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    16 hours ago
  • Elizabeth Rata: Two Treaties of Waitangi: The Articles Treaty and the Principles Treaty
    Commentary There are two versions of the Treaty of Waitangi.  The first is the 1840 Treaty – the ‘Articles Treaty’. The second is what I call the ‘Principles Treaty’. It dates from 1986 when the principles were first included in legislation. Astonishingly the parliamentary representatives who inserted the word ‘principles’ ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    16 hours ago
  • Climate Emergency!
    It’s hard not to become a bit blasé towards climate change headlines. Flooding kills hundreds - blah. Catastrophic droughts - blah blah. One-in-a-hundred year events happening every year - blah blah blah.The earth had its highest temperature on record - again. Think we’ve read that one.So many articles telling us ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    17 hours ago
  • The Kākā Project: The economics of sufficiency
    The Kākā’s climate correspondent and had a chat with environmental historian and author Catherine Knight about why ‘feel good' actions like recycling and owning an electric car are unlikely to be enough to create a transition to zero emissions, let alone a just one. Knight says comments like ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    18 hours ago
  • Chippy misses a chance
    National leader Christopher Luxon has pulled out of any rescheduling of tonight’s Press debate, which has had to be cancelled because Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has Covid. The cancellation has given National an excuse to avoid a debate, which was always going to be a risk for Luxon. But ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    19 hours ago
  • The Angry Majority.
    The People's Champion vs The People's Prosecutor: It is the news media’s job to elicit information from politicians – not to prosecute them. Peters’ promise to sort out TVNZ should be believed. If he finds himself in a position to carry out his threat, then it will only be because ...
    1 day ago
  • Verrall is chuffed by govt’s latest push into pay equity while Woods enthuses about an $11m spend ...
    Buzz from the Beehive The headline on a ministerial press statement curiously expresses the government’s position when it declares:   Government shows further commitment to pay equity for healthcare workers. Is it not enough to declare just one commitment? Or is the government’s commitment to pay equity being declared sector by ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    1 day ago
  • A very worthy coalition partner for Seymour and Luxon
    There have been 53 New Zealand Parliaments so far. The 39th of them was elected in 1978. It was a parliament of 92 MPs, most of them men. The New Zealand Music Awards that year named John Rowles Male Vocalist of the Year and — after a short twelve months ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 day ago
  • Labour still protecting the status quo
    Aotearoa has a cost of living crisis. And one of the major drivers of this crisis is the supermarket duopoly, who gouge every dollar they can out of us. Last year, the Commerce Commission found that the duopoly was in fact anti-competititve, giving the government social licence to fix the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Gordon Campbell on National’s myths about the desolated state of the economy
    Familiarity breeds consent. If you repeat the line “six years of economic mis-management” about 10,000 times, it sounds like the received wisdom, whatever the evidence to the contrary. Yes, the global pandemic and the global surge in inflation that came in its wake occurred here as well – but if ...
    1 day ago
  • MICHAEL BASSETT: Hapless Hipkins and his racism
    Michael Bassett writes – Without so much as batting an eyelid, Chris Hipkins told an audience on Saturday that there had been “more racism” in this election campaign than ever before. And he blamed it on the opposition parties, National, Act and New Zealand First. In those ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 day ago
  • BRIAN EASTON: The ‘recession’ has been called off, but some households are still struggling
    While the economy is not doing too badly in output terms, external circumstances are not favourable, and there is probably a sizeable group of households struggling because of rising interest rates. Brian Easton writes – Last week’s announcement of a 0.9 percent increase in volume GDP for ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 day ago
  • Monday’s Chorus: Richie Poulton's lament
    “You can't really undo what happens during childhood”, said the director of the Dunedin longitudinal study. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Richie Poulton, the director of the world-leading Dunedin longitudinal study showing how devastating poverty in early life is, died yesterday. With his final words, he lamented the lack ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • North-western downgrades
    This is a guest post from reader Peter N As many of us know, Auckland Transport and Waka Kotahi are well into progressing works on the northwestern interim “busway” with services to kick off in just over a month from now on Sunday 12th November 2023. Some of the ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    2 days ago
  • Has Webworm Found New Zealand’s Weirdest School?
    Hi,Before we talk about weird schools people choose to send their kids to, a few things on my mind. I adored the Ask Me Anything we did last week. Thanks for taking part. I love answering your weird and nosy questions, even questions about beans.I am excited and scared as Mister ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 days ago
  • Another mother of a budget
    A National government would make spending cuts on a scale not seen since the 1990 – 96 Bolger government.That much was confirmed with the release of their Fiscal Plan on Friday.Government spending is currently high as a percentage of GDP — as high as it was during the Muldoon ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 days ago
  • A crucial week starts as early voting opens in the NZ Elections … it’s been a ride so far. Are y...
    Chris Hipkins down with Covid, at least for 5 days isolation, National continue to obfuscate, ACT continues to double-down on the poor and Winston… well, he’s being Winston really. Voters beware: this week could be even more infuriating than the last. No Party is what they used to be ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 days ago
  • 2023 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #39
    A chronological listing of news and opinion articles posted on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Sep 24, 2023 thru Sat, Sep 30, 2023. Story of the Week We’re not doomed yet’: climate scientist Michael Mann on our last chance to save human civilisation The renowned US ...
    2 days ago
  • Clusterf**ck of Chaos.
    On the 11th of April 1945 advancing US forces liberated the Nazi concentration camp of Buchenwald near Weimar in Germany. In the coming days, under the order of General Patton, a thousand nearby residents were forced to march to the camp to see the atrocities that had been committed in ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • The party of business deals with the future by pretending it isn’t coming
    Years and years ago, when Helen Clark was Prime Minister and John Key was gunning for her job, I had a conversation with a mate, a trader who knew John Key well enough to paint a helpful picture.It was many drinks ago so it’s not a complete one. But there’s ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    3 days ago
  • 2023 More Reading: September (+ Old Phuul update)
    Completed reads for September: The Lost Continent, by C.J. Cutcliffe Hyne Flatland, by Edwin Abbott All Quiet on the Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque The Country of the Blind, by H.G. Wells The Day of the Triffids, by John Wyndham A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles ...
    3 days ago
  • Losing The Left.
    Descending Into The Dark: The ideological cadres currently controlling both Labour and the Greens are forcing “justice”, “participation” and “democracy” to make way for what is “appropriate” and “responsible”. But, where does that leave the people who, for most of their adult lives, have voted for left-wing parties, precisely to ...
    3 days ago
  • The New “Emperor’s New Clothes”.
    “‘BUT HE HASN’T GOT ANYTHING ON,’ a little boy said ….. ‘But he hasn’t got anything on!’ the whole town cried out at last.”On this optimistic note, Hans Christian Andersen brings his cautionary tale of “The Emperor’s New Clothes” to an end.Andersen’s children’s story was written nearly two centuries ago, ...
    3 days ago
  • BRYCE EDWARDS: The vested interests shaping National Party policies
      Bryce Edwards writes – As the National Party gets closer to government, lobbyists and business interests will be lining up for influence and to get policies adopted. It’s therefore in the public interest to have much more scrutiny and transparency about potential conflicts of interests that ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • LINDSAY MITCHELL: A conundrum for those pushing racist dogma
    Lindsay Mitchell writes – The heavily promoted narrative, which has ramped up over the last six years, is that Maori somehow have special vulnerabilities which arise from outside forces they cannot control; that contemporary society fails to meet their needs. They are not receptive to messages and ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER:  The greater of two evils
    Not Labour: If you’re out to punish the government you once loved, then the last thing you need is to be shown evidence that the opposition parties are much, much worse.   Chris Trotter writes – THE GREATEST VIRTUE of being the Opposition is not being the Government. Only very ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to Sept 30
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The five things that mattered in Aotearoa’s political economy that we wrote and spoke about via The Kākā and elsewhere for paying subscribers in the last week included:Labour presented a climate manifesto that aimed to claim the high ground on climate action vs National, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Litanies, articles of faith, and being a beneficiary
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past two weeks.Friday 29Play it, ElvisElection Hell special!! This week’s quiz is a bumper edition featuring a few of the more popular questions from last weekend’s show, as well as a few we didn’t ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • Litanies, articles of faith, and being a beneficiary
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past two weeks.Friday 29Play it, ElvisElection Hell special!! This week’s quiz is a bumper edition featuring a few of the more popular questions from last weekend’s show, as well as a few we didn’t ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • The ‘Recession’ Has Been Called Off, But Some Households Are Still Struggling
    While the economy is not doing too badly in output terms, external circumstances are not favourable, and there is probably a sizeable group of households struggling because of rising interest rates.Last week’s announcement of a 0.9 percent increase in volume GDP for the June quarter had the commentariat backing down ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong direction
    This week the International Energy Association released its Net Zero Roadmap, intended to guide us towards a liveable climate. The report demanded huge increases in renewable generation, no new gas or oil, and massive cuts to methane emissions. It was positive about our current path, but recommended that countries with ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • “Racism” becomes a buzz word on the campaign trail – but our media watchdogs stay muzzled when...
    Buzz from the Beehive  Oh, dear.  We have nothing to report from the Beehive. At least, we have nothing to report from the government’s official website. But the drones have not gone silent.  They are out on the election campaign trail, busy buzzing about this and that in the hope ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    4 days ago
  • Play it, Elvis
    Election Hell special!! This week’s quiz is a bumper edition featuring a few of the more popular questions from last weekend’s show, as well as a few we didn’t have time for. You’re welcome, etc. Let us press on, etc. 1.  What did Christopher Luxon use to his advantage in ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • Pure class warfare
    National unveiled its fiscal policy today, announcing all the usual things which business cares about and I don't. But it did finally tell us how National plans to pay for its handouts to landlords: by effectively cutting benefits: The biggest saving announced on Friday was $2b cut from the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Ask Me Anything about the week to Sept 29
    Photo by Anna Ogiienko on UnsplashIt’s that time of the week for an ‘Ask Me Anything’ session for paying subscribers about the week that was for an hour, including:duelling fiscal plans from National and Labour;Labour cutting cycling spending while accusing National of being weak on climate;Research showing the need for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 29-September-2023
    Welcome to Friday and the last one for September. This week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Matt highlighted at the latest with the City Rail Link. On Tuesday, Matt covered the interesting items from Auckland Transport’s latest board meeting agendas. On Thursday, a guest post from Darren Davis ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    5 days ago
  • Protest at Parliament: The Reunion.
    Brian’s god spoke to him. He, for of course the Lord in Tamaki’s mind was a male god, with a mighty rod, and probably some black leathers. He, told Brian - “you must put a stop to all this love, hope, and kindness”. And it did please the Brian.He said ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Labour cuts $50m from cycleway spending
    Labour is cutting spending on cycling infrastructure while still trying to claim the higher ground on climate. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The Labour Government released a climate manifesto this week to try to claim the high ground against National, despite having ignored the Climate Commission’s advice to toughen ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Greater Of Two Evils.
    Not Labour: If you’re out to punish the government you once loved, then the last thing you need is to be shown evidence that the opposition parties are much, much worse.THE GREATEST VIRTUE of being the Opposition is not being the Government. Only very rarely is an opposition party elected ...
    5 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #39 2023
    Open access notables "Net zero is only a distraction— we just have to end fossil fuel emissions." The latter is true but the former isn't, or  not in the real world as it's likely to be in the immediate future. And "just" just doesn't enter into it; we don't have ...
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter: Losing the Left
    IN THE CURRENT MIX of electoral alternatives, there is no longer a credible left-wing party. Not when “a credible left-wing party” is defined as: a class-oriented, mass-based, democratically-structured political organisation; dedicated to promoting ideas sharply critical of laissez-faire capitalism; and committed to advancing democratic, egalitarian and emancipatory ideals across the ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • Road rage at Kia Kaha Primary School
    It is not the school holidays yet at Kia Kaha Primary School!It can be any time when you are telling a story.Telling stories about things that happened in the past is how we learn from our mistakes.If we want to.Anyway, it is not the school holidays yet at Kia Kaha ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Road rage at Kia Kaha Primary School
    It is not the school holidays yet at Kia Kaha Primary School!It can be any time when you are telling a story.Telling stories about things that happened in the past is how we learn from our mistakes.If we want to.Anyway, it is not the school holidays yet at Kia Kaha ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Road rage at Kia Kaha Primary School
    It is not the school holidays yet at Kia Kaha Primary School!It can be any time when you are telling a story.Telling stories about things that happened in the past is how we learn from our mistakes.If we want to.Anyway, it is not the school holidays yet at Kia Kaha ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Hipkins fires up in leaders’ debate, but has the curtain already fallen on the Labour-led coalitio...
    Labour’s  Chris Hipkins came out firing, in the  leaders’ debate  on Newshub’s evening programme, and most of  the pundits  rated  him the winner against National’s  Christopher Luxon. But will this make any difference when New  Zealanders  start casting their ballots? The problem  for  Hipkins is  that  voters are  all too ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    5 days ago
  • Govt is energising housing projects with solar power – and fuelling the public’s concept of a di...
    Buzz from the Beehive  Not long after Point of Order published data which show the substantial number of New Zealanders (77%) who believe NZ is becoming more divided, government ministers were braying about a programme which distributes some money to “the public” and some to “Maori”. The ministers were dishing ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • MIKE GRIMSHAW: Election 2023 – a totemic & charisma failure?
    The D&W analysis Michael Grimshaw writes –  Given the apathy, disengagement, disillusionment, and all-round ennui of this year’s general election, it was considered time to bring in those noted political operatives and spin doctors D&W, the long-established consultancy firm run by Emile Durkheim and Max Weber. Known for ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • FROM BFD: Will Winston be the spectre we think?
    Kissy kissy. Cartoon credit BoomSlang. The BFD. JC writes-  Allow me to preface this contribution with the following statement: If I were asked to express a preference between a National/ACT coalition or a National/ACT/NZF coalition then it would be the former. This week Luxon declared his position, ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • California’s climate disclosure bill could have a huge impact across the U.S.
    This re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Andy Furillo was originally published by Capital & Main and is part of Covering Climate Now, a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate story. The California Legislature took a step last week that has the potential to accelerate the fight against climate ...
    6 days ago
  • Untangling South East Queensland’s Public Transport
    This is a cross post Adventures in Transitland by Darren Davis. I recently visited Brisbane and South East Queensland and came away both impressed while also pondering some key changes to make public transport even better in the region. Here goes with my take on things. A bit of ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    6 days ago
  • Try A Little Kindness.
    My daughter arrived home from the supermarket yesterday and she seemed a bit worried about something. It turned out she wanted to know if someone could get her bank number from a receipt.We wound the story back.She was in the store and there was a man there who was distressed, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • What makes NZFirst tick
    New Zealand’s longest-running political roadshow rolled into Opotiki yesterday, with New Zealand First leader Winston Peters knowing another poll last night showed he would make it back to Parliament and National would need him and his party if they wanted to form a government. The Newshub Reid Research poll ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • September AMA
    Hi,As September draws to a close — I feel it’s probably time to do an Ask Me Anything. You know how it goes: If you have any burning questions, fire away in the comments and I will do my best to answer. You might have questions about Webworm, or podcast ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Bludgers lying in the scratcher making fools of us all
    The mediocrity who stands to be a Prime Minister has a litany.He uses it a bit like a Koru Lounge card. He will brandish it to say: these people are eligible. And more than that, too: These people are deserving. They have earned this policy.They have a right to this policy. What ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • More “partnerships” (by the look of it) and redress of over $30 million in Treaty settlement wit...
    Buzz from the Beehive Point of Order has waited until now – 3.45pm – for today’s officially posted government announcements.  There have been none. The only addition to the news on the Beehive’s website was posted later yesterday, after we had published our September 26 Buzz report. It came from ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • ALEX HOLLAND: Labour’s spending
    Alex Holland writes –  In 2017 when Labour came to power, crown spending was $76 billion per year. Now in 2023 it is $139 billion per year, which equates to a $63 billion annual increase (over $1 billion extra spend every week!) In 2017, New Zealand’s government debt ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • If not now, then when?
    Labour released its fiscal plan today, promising the same old, same old: "responsibility", balanced books, and of course no new taxes: "Labour will maintain income tax settings to provide consistency and certainty in these volatile times. Now is not the time for additional taxes or to promise billions of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • THE FACTS:  77% of Kiwis believe NZ is becoming more divided
    The Facts has posted –        KEY INSIGHTSOf New Zealander’s polled: Social unity/division 77%believe NZ is becoming more divided (42% ‘much more’ + 35% ‘a little more’) 3%believe NZ is becoming less divided (1% ‘much less’ + 2% ‘a little less’) ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the cynical brutality of the centre-right’s welfare policies
    The centre-right’s enthusiasm for forcing people off the benefit and into paid work is matched only by the enthusiasm (shared by Treasury and the Reserve Bank) for throwing people out of paid work to curb inflation, and achieve the optimal balance of workers to job seekers deemed to be desirable ...
    6 days ago
  • Wednesday’s Chorus: Arthur Grimes on why building many, many more social houses is so critical
    New research shows that tenants in social housing - such as these Wellington apartments - are just as happy as home owners and much happier than private tenants. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The election campaign took an ugly turn yesterday, and in completely the wrong direction. All three ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Bennie Bashing.
    If there’s one thing the mob loves more than keeping Māori in their place, more than getting tough on the gangs, maybe even more than tax cuts. It’s a good old round of beneficiary bashing.Are those meanies in the ACT party stealing your votes because they think David Seymour is ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • The kindest cuts
    Labour kicks off the fiscal credibility battle today with the release of its fiscal plan. National is expected to follow, possibly as soon as Thursday, with its own plan, which may (or may not) address the large hole that the problems with its foreign buyers’ ban might open up. ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    7 days ago
  • Green right turn in Britain? Well, a start
    While it may be unlikely to register in New Zealand’s general election, Britain’s PM Rishi Sunak has done something which might just be important in the long run. He’s announced a far-reaching change in his Conservative government’s approach to environmental, and particularly net zero, policy. The starting point – ...
    Point of OrderBy xtrdnry
    7 days ago
  • At a glance – How do human CO2 emissions compare to natural CO2 emissions?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    1 week ago
  • How could this happen?
    Canada is in uproar after the exposure that its parliament on September 22 provided a standing ovation to a Nazi veteran who had been invited into the chamber to participate in the parliamentary welcome to Ukrainian President Zelensky. Yaroslav Hunka, 98, a Ukrainian man who volunteered for service in ...
    1 week ago
  • Always Be Campaigning
    The big screen is a great place to lay out the ways of the salesman. He comes ready-made for Panto, ripe for lampooning.This is not to disparage that life. I have known many good people of that kind. But there is a type, brazen as all get out. The camera ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago

  • Youth justice programme expands to break cycle of offending
    The successful ‘Circuit Breaker’ fast track programme designed to stop repeat youth offending was launched in two new locations today by Children’s Minister Kelvin Davis. The programme, first piloted in West and South Auckland in December last year, is aimed at children aged 10-13 who commit serious offending or continue ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Major milestone with 20,000 employers using Apprenticeship Boost
    The Government’s Apprenticeship Boost initiative has now supported 20,000 employers to help keep on and train up apprentices, Minister for Social Development and Employment Carmel Sepuloni announced in Christchurch today. Almost 62,000 apprentices have been supported to start and keep training for a trade since the initiative was introduced in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Government supporting wood processing jobs and more diverse industry
    The Government is supporting non-pine tree sawmilling and backing further job creation in sawmills in Rotorua and Whangarei, Forestry Minister Peeni Henare said.   “The Forestry and Wood Processing Industry Transformation Plan identified the need to add more diversity to our productions forests, wood products and markets,” Peeni Henare said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Government backing Canterbury’s future in aerospace industry
    The Government is helping Canterbury’s aerospace industry take off with further infrastructure support for the Tāwhaki Aerospace Centre at Kaitorete, Infrastructure Minister Dr Megan Woods has announced. “Today I can confirm we will provide a $5.4 million grant to the Tāwhaki Joint Venture to fund a sealed runway and hangar ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Updated forestry regulations increase council controls and require large slash removal
    Local councils will have more power to decide where new commercial forests – including carbon forests – are located, to reduce impacts on communities and the environment, Environment Minister David Parker said today. “New national standards give councils greater control over commercial forestry, including clear rules on harvesting practices and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • New Zealand resumes peacekeeping force leadership
    New Zealand will again contribute to the leadership of the Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt, with a senior New Zealand Defence Force officer returning as Interim Force Commander. Defence Minister Andrew Little and Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta have announced the deployment of New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New national direction provides clarity for development and the environment
    The Government has taken an important step in implementing the new resource management system, by issuing a draft National Planning Framework (NPF) document under the new legislation, Environment Minister David Parker said today. “The NPF consolidates existing national direction, bringing together around 20 existing instruments including policy statements, standards, and ...
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    1 day ago
  • Government shows further commitment to pay equity for healthcare workers
    The Government welcomes the proposed pay equity settlement that will see significant pay increases for around 18,000 Te Whatu Ora Allied, Scientific, and Technical employees, if accepted said Health Minister Ayesha Verrall. The proposal reached between Te Whatu Ora, the New Zealand Public Service Association Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi ...
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    1 day ago
  • 100 new public EV chargers to be added to national network
    The public EV charging network has received a significant boost with government co-funding announced today for over 100 EV chargers – with over 200 charging ports altogether – across New Zealand, and many planned to be up and running on key holiday routes by Christmas this year. Minister of Energy ...
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    2 days ago
  • Safeguarding Tuvalu language and identity
    Tuvalu is in the spotlight this week as communities across New Zealand celebrate Vaiaso o te Gagana Tuvalu – Tuvalu Language Week. “The Government has a proven record of supporting Pacific communities and ensuring more of our languages are spoken, heard and celebrated,” Pacific Peoples Minister Barbara Edmonds said. “Many ...
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    3 days ago
  • New community-level energy projects to support more than 800 Māori households
    Seven more innovative community-scale energy projects will receive government funding through the Māori and Public Housing Renewable Energy Fund to bring more affordable, locally generated clean energy to more than 800 Māori households, Energy and Resources Minister Dr Megan Woods says. “We’ve already funded 42 small-scale clean energy projects that ...
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    6 days ago
  • Huge boost to Te Tai Tokerau flood resilience
    The Government has approved new funding that will boost resilience and greatly reduce the risk of major flood damage across Te Tai Tokerau. Significant weather events this year caused severe flooding and damage across the region. The $8.9m will be used to provide some of the smaller communities and maraes ...
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    6 days ago
  • Napier’s largest public housing development comes with solar
    The largest public housing development in Napier for many years has been recently completed and has the added benefit of innovative solar technology, thanks to Government programmes, says Housing Minister Dr Megan Woods. The 24 warm, dry homes are in Seddon Crescent, Marewa and Megan Woods says the whanau living ...
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    7 days ago
  • Te Whānau a Apanui and the Crown initial Deed of Settlement I Kua waitohua e Te Whānau a Apanui me...
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    1 week ago
  • Plan for 3,000 more public homes by 2025 – regions set to benefit
    Regions around the country will get significant boosts of public housing in the next two years, as outlined in the latest public housing plan update, released by the Housing Minister, Dr Megan Woods. “We’re delivering the most public homes each year since the Nash government of the 1950s with one ...
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    1 week ago
  • Immigration settings updates
    Judicial warrant process for out-of-hours compliance visits 2023/24 Recognised Seasonal Employer cap increased by 500 Additional roles for Construction and Infrastructure Sector Agreement More roles added to Green List Three-month extension for onshore Recovery Visa holders The Government has confirmed a number of updates to immigration settings as part of ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Poroporoaki: Tā Patrick (Patu) Wahanga Hohepa
    Tangi ngunguru ana ngā tai ki te wahapū o Hokianga Whakapau Karakia. Tārehu ana ngā pae maunga ki Te Puna o te Ao Marama. Korihi tangi ana ngā manu, kua hinga he kauri nui ki te Wao Nui o Tāne. He Toa. He Pou. He Ahorangi. E papaki tū ana ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Renewable energy fund to support community resilience
    40 solar energy systems on community buildings in regions affected by Cyclone Gabrielle and other severe weather events Virtual capability-building hub to support community organisations get projects off the ground Boost for community-level renewable energy projects across the country At least 40 community buildings used to support the emergency response ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19 funding returned to Government
    The lifting of COVID-19 isolation and mask mandates in August has resulted in a return of almost $50m in savings and recovered contingencies, Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. Following the revocation of mandates and isolation, specialised COVID-19 telehealth and alternative isolation accommodation are among the operational elements ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Appointment of District Court Judge
    Susie Houghton of Auckland has been appointed as a new District Court Judge, to serve on the Family Court, Attorney-General David Parker said today.  Judge Houghton has acted as a lawyer for child for more than 20 years. She has acted on matters relating to the Hague Convention, an international ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Government invests further in Central Hawke’s Bay resilience
    The Government has today confirmed $2.5 million to fund a replace and upgrade a stopbank to protect the Waipawa Drinking Water Treatment Plant. “As a result of Cyclone Gabrielle, the original stopbank protecting the Waipawa Drinking Water Treatment Plant was destroyed. The plant was operational within 6 weeks of the ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Govt boost for Hawke’s Bay cyclone waste clean-up
    Another $2.1 million to boost capacity to deal with waste left in Cyclone Gabrielle’s wake. Funds for Hastings District Council, Phoenix Contracting and Hog Fuel NZ to increase local waste-processing infrastructure. The Government is beefing up Hawke’s Bay’s Cyclone Gabrielle clean-up capacity with more support dealing with the massive amount ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Taupō Supercars revs up with Government support
    The future of Supercars events in New Zealand has been secured with new Government support. The Government is getting engines started through the Major Events Fund, a special fund to support high profile events in New Zealand that provide long-term economic, social and cultural benefits. “The Repco Supercars Championship is ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • There is no recession in NZ, economy grows nearly 1 percent in June quarter
    The economy has turned a corner with confirmation today New Zealand never was in recession and stronger than expected growth in the June quarter, Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. “The New Zealand economy is doing better than expected,” Grant Robertson said. “It’s continuing to grow, with the latest figures showing ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Highest legal protection for New Zealand’s largest freshwater springs
    The Government has accepted the Environment Court’s recommendation to give special legal protection to New Zealand’s largest freshwater springs, Te Waikoropupū Springs (also known as Pupū Springs), Environment Minister David Parker announced today.   “Te Waikoropupū Springs, near Takaka in Golden Bay, have the second clearest water in New Zealand after ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • More support for victims of migrant exploitation
    Temporary package of funding for accommodation and essential living support for victims of migrant exploitation Exploited migrant workers able to apply for a further Migrant Exploitation Protection Visa (MEPV), giving people more time to find a job Free job search assistance to get people back into work Use of 90-day ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Strong export boost as NZ economy turns corner
    An export boost is supporting New Zealand’s economy to grow, adding to signs that the economy has turned a corner and is on a stronger footing as we rebuild from Cyclone Gabrielle and lock in the benefits of multiple new trade deals, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. “The economy is ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Funding approved for flood resilience work in Te Karaka
    The Government has approved $15 million to raise about 200 homes at risk of future flooding. More than half of this is expected to be spent in the Tairāwhiti settlement of Te Karaka, lifting about 100 homes there. “Te Karaka was badly hit during Cyclone Gabrielle when the Waipāoa River ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Further business support for cyclone-affected regions
    The Government is helping businesses recover from Cyclone Gabrielle and attract more people back into their regions. “Cyclone Gabrielle has caused considerable damage across North Island regions with impacts continuing to be felt by businesses and communities,” Economic Development Minister Barbara Edmonds said. “Building on our earlier business support, this ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • New maintenance facility at Burnham Military Camp underway
    Defence Minister Andrew Little has turned the first sod to start construction of a new Maintenance Support Facility (MSF) at Burnham Military Camp today. “This new state-of-art facility replaces Second World War-era buildings and will enable our Defence Force to better maintain and repair equipment,” Andrew Little said. “This Government ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Foreign Minister to attend United Nations General Assembly
    Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta will represent New Zealand at the 78th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York this week, before visiting Washington DC for further Pacific focussed meetings. Nanaia Mahuta will be in New York from Wednesday 20 September, and will participate in UNGA leaders ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Midwives’ pay equity offer reached
    Around 1,700 Te Whatu Ora employed midwives and maternity care assistants will soon vote on a proposed pay equity settlement agreed by Te Whatu Ora, the Midwifery Employee Representation and Advisory Service (MERAS) and New Zealand Nurses Association (NZNO), Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. “Addressing historical pay ...
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    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand provides support to Morocco
    Aotearoa New Zealand will provide humanitarian support to those affected by last week’s earthquake in Morocco, Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today. “We are making a contribution of $1 million to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) to help meet humanitarian needs,” Nanaia Mahuta said. ...
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    3 weeks ago
  • Government invests in West Coast’s roading resilience
    The Government is investing over $22 million across 18 projects to improve the resilience of roads in the West Coast that have been affected by recent extreme weather, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins confirmed today.  A dedicated Transport Resilience Fund has been established for early preventative works to protect the state ...
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    3 weeks ago

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