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Bullying schools – again

Written By: - Date published: 8:58 am, July 16th, 2012 - 29 comments
Categories: democracy under attack, national, schools - Tags: , , ,

Now the Nats want want editorial control over the school newsletter:

Minister to schools: keep politics out of newsletters

Education Minister Hekia Parata has told the School Trustees Association to keep politics out of school newsletters.

Or – what? What is the threat here? Cuts in funding, like last time?

Ms Parata gave the warning at the association’s annual conference on Friday in Wellington. A number of schools have sent out newsletters that included vocal opposition to some Government policies.

The minister’s warning comes weeks after she dropped a plan to increase class sizes for some school years in the face of widespread opposition from schools and parents.

Some of that opposition was expressed in school newsletters, and Ms Parata says that’s the wrong place for political agenda.

Schools are the wrong place for a political agenda all right. Yet that is what the Nats have got for them. And now they want to silence schools that speak up about it?

So add an entry to the ever growing list of National’s attempts to censor and bully schools – threats against principals and school boards who were exercising their rights to free speech, threats to sack dissenting boards, threats of withheld funding.   Nor are schools the only target of these heavy handed  bullying tactics.  The “brighter future” doesn’t like dissent.

29 comments on “Bullying schools – again ”

  1. rosy 1

    Huh? Doesn’t muzzling a school newsletter go right against parents’ freedom to know what sort of school they’re sending their kids to?

    School newsletters that provide information on how the school views educational decision-making are vital to understanding the school and how it operates.

  2. Tom Gould 2

    Tried and true Tory tactic. Nothing new here. If you can’t win the debate, undermine the motives or character of the opponent. Dog whistle. Race-bating. Wedging. Been doing it for decades.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      +1

      And the Tories can never win the debate as the facts always go against them.

      • Ee 2.1.1

        It all depends, does stumbling around like an idiot claiming 2+2=5 really count as losing a debate when the crowd cheers and the media spends a week hailing it as a victory?

  3. felix 3

    So glad we got rid of that meddling nanny-state Labour govt.

  4. jcuknz 4

    From what I heard of the juvenile headmaster and what he did to the photo I think the minister is right to comment. As a taxpayer I object to my taxes being used for political purposes apart from established parliamentary purposes. I frankly wonder at the mis-education children are getting these days.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 4.1

      “mis-education” – it’s pretty obvious you don’t have the first idea what you’re talking about, but perhaps you are referring to the abject unmitigated clusterfuck called “National Standards” – which are neither. Or perhaps you’re referring to the abysmal incompetence displayed in this year’s budget.

      Four years, two trainwrecks, and some consultants paid to organise a trial of private schools that no-one wants but the parasites who plan to clip the ticket. What a bunch of clowns.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 4.2

      Newsletters arent tax payer funded.
      The schools have a to raise a lot of their own money , remember

    • Tom Gould 4.3

      @ jcuknz, as a taxpayer, I object to my taxes being used for political purposes too, like ferrying the Minister around the country to brow-beat and threaten BOTs and teachers and parents when they run ‘off message’.

    • millsy 4.4

      Oh piss off dickhead. Just because you want to return to the days of the 3 R’s and kids getting thrashed raw with the cane…

  5. QoT 5

    There really is a dearth of good Anne Tolley/Dolores Umbridge ‘shops online.

    • felix 5.1

      Oh that is good. Hardly needs shooping though

      • ghostwhowalksnz 5.1.1

        Anne/ Dolores has gone and is now replaced by Hekia/ Selma Bouvier ( Terwilliger Hutz McClure) from the Simpsons

        • QoT 5.1.1.1

          Ah, you’re totally right. Anne’s off crushing cars in a pointless show of insecure dominance. Parata wouldn’t look quite as good as Umbridge, but I’m sure it could still be done.

          • Tiger Mountain 5.1.1.1.1

            Loathe as anyone should be to criticise someone’s appearance, UK ring in Lesley Longstone, current NZ Secretary of Education is a total fit for Hogwarts, she would need a make over to look as good as Dolores in fact. http://wa2.cdn.3news.co.nz/3news/AM/2012/3/1/244771/longstone.jpg?width=620

            The NZ Ministry of Magic is now mainly staffed by consultants and yes people, the good educators with any pride have all buggered off. It is interesting to see sections of the once doormat like NZSTA waking up a bit, probably because they now have to deal with the fallout.

  6. Kotahi Tane Huna 6

    If the Minister thinks she can silence school trustees, let her apply to the courts, and the police can enforce the silencing orders. Who does she think she is?

    Newsflash to Hekia Parata: you’re a politician – you belong to the least trusted lowest esteemed group of citizens in New Zealand. You don’t get to give orders, or silence your detractors. Pull your head in.

  7. bad12 7

    At being told that Hekia was far from amused by the contents of the schools newsletters the School Principles Association were not heard loudly disclaiming ”Go f**k yourself Hekia”,

    They are all way to polite to talk to the Minister in such a fashion, that’s just my literal translation from a gutter perspective of what the principles conveyed to Hekia over Her concerns…

  8. jcuknz 8

    >>>>Newsflash to Hekia Parata: you’re a politician – you belong to the least trusted lowest esteemed group of citizens in New Zealand. You don’t get to give orders, or silence your detractors. Pull your head in.<<>>At being told that Hekia was far from amused by the contents of the schools newsletters the School Principles Association were not heard loudly disclaiming ”Go f**k yourself Hekia”,<<<

    Just proves my point as to the standard of the education 'profession' these days.
    Politicians reflect those who elect them and if they are good they say what is neccessary.
    I certainly was dissapointed that a headmaster, the type of person who set standards in my childhood, would publish something as reported.

    • bad12 8.1

      Are you suggesting that Schools should via the regular newsletters they send home with the kids parrot the ‘party line’ as dictated by whoever is the Minister at any given time,

      Schools in my opinion have a duty first to the Parents of the children sent there to be educated and secondly to the Minister of the Government of the day,

      Where schools are of the view that what the Minister and the Government of the day are attempting to impose upon those schools is detrimental to the education of the children being sent to those schools my opinion would stretch further to add that those schools have a DUTY to those children and their parents to inform the parents of the schools view…

    • fabregas4 8.2

      What was it?

      • Bunji 8.2.1

        They had pictures of Key and Parata with “Failed” written across them, accompanying a piece from the head about teacher losses the school would be forced into due to ratio-related funding cuts.

        Obviously a bit too cutting for the thin-skinned.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 8.3

      “…if they are good they say what is neccessary (sic)…”

      …and if they are bad, they make funding changes in the budget that they don’t understand the implications of, and then have to back down in a display of breath-taking incompetence. The embodiment of ridicule and humiliation, but she gets to decide what goes in the newsletter? Tui moment.

    • North 8.4

      So you’re saying that Hekia is NOT a total embarrassment are you jcuknz ?

  9. Dr Terry 9

    This Minister proves the point (like some of her supporters here) that the educated are not necessarily at all intelligent.

  10. jack 10

    I can remember when Key was in opposition, wow, he kept saying that there is too much government in our lives and Labour has created a Nanny state. 4 years later, it’s getting worse because now Key is censoring open debate in schools, the very place where debates should be to stimulate the minds of the young. This guy is getting more rediculous by the day. He’s a hell of a lot worse than Helen Clarke was. Just look at the Local government act of 2003 reform.. shit this guy wants local government to answer the ministers and not us, the ratepayers. 2014 can’t come too soon.

  11. Georgecom 11

    Not ok for schools to send information to parents in their newsletters that criticises goverrnment policy.

    Perfectly ok however for the Minister of Education to print pamphlets about National Standards and tell schools to give them to parents.

    National standards or double standards?

  12. jcuknz 12

    I thinki it is wrong for schools to lay out the educationalists ‘party line’ despite what parents and government wants …. ‘party line’ cuts both ways. But I don’t expect to read such reasonableness on this site so never mind.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 12.1

      “Educationalists party line” – what a witless and unsubstantiated smear. This is exactly the sort of gutter ethics I expect from the right wing – and you don’t even understand why I describe it in those terms, do you?

      You swallowed some political bullshit, and now you look like a dupe.

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