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Failing Charter School punished by increase in funding

Written By: - Date published: 1:33 pm, July 24th, 2015 - 33 comments
Categories: education, Hekia parata, national, national/act government, Politics, privatisation, Privatisation, Public Private Partnerships, same old national, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

Friday afternoon is the dead time in politics.  If you have any bad news now is the time to dump it.

In a result which is that crazy it will potentially overshadow the Serco fiasco, at least for a while, Hekia Parata has decided to punish a poorly performing Charter School by increasing in its funding.  Yes the last sentence is correct and does not contain any typos.

From the Herald:

A troubled Northland charter school has been allowed to stay open and will be given a large funding boost – despite an audit finding grounds to terminate its contract and financial management problems.

The long-term future of Te Pumanawa o te Wairua remains unclear.

Education Minister Hekia Parata has not taken advice from her ministry to close the school, but will again consider its future after the results of another audit in October.

The reasons for the recommendation that the school be closed include the following:

  • A fallout between senior managers.
  • Serious health and safety issues including bullying and drug use.
  • Inadequate financial management practices.
  • A failure to provide proper information to the ministry.
  • Completion of only one of the required actions in a performance notice issued by the Department.
  • Although 49 students were enrolled for NCEA credits, only one school-leaver gained a formal qualification at the school.
  • The maintenance of incomplete performance data which meant that the achievement data published in its annual report could not be relied upon.
  • An inability to provide key financial information such as operational budgets, forecasts and management reports.

The Ministry thought that the breaches were not capable of remedy and that the grounds exist for the Minister to issue a termination notice.  But instead of this she kept the school open and gave it extra funds of $129,000.

In February she gave the school a final notice.  Now it sounds like it has a final final notice and some more money.

Given this precedent Serco can expect to have an increase in the amount it is paid.

National need to do the proper thing, acknowledge this model has failed, and reintegrate students of this school back into the main stream system.  Parata’s decision is obviously because they do not want to admit that this particular experiment was a mistake.

I understand the amended Health and Safety reform bill will be released today and there is more news about Serco to break.  This particular Friday afternoon looks like it is going to be a colossal bad news dump day.

33 comments on “Failing Charter School punished by increase in funding ”

  1. ianmac 1

    Brazen politics from Parata?

    • mickysavage 1.1

      Strange because National’s one strength is the perception they are good economic managers but this particular decision makes no sense at all.

      Think Southern Health Board, Ecan and a few others. They were brutally discharged and replaced but this particular example is met with more money.

      • adam 1.1.1

        But all of the decisions you mentioned, Southern Health Board, Ecan and a few others, appear to be failing as well mickysavage.

        Even if we side step, that in doing what they have doing proves their own economic ideology, is an abject failure.

        I would have though conservatives would bulk at the idea of wasting the public purse to achieve some sort of ideological ends? Or do we have no conservatives in this country, with any spin, to stand up to these crazy casino capitalists?

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.2

        Strange because National’s one strength is the perception they are good economic managers but this particular decision makes no sense at all.

        That perception should have been put to rest under Muldoon but they’ve, somehow, managed to keep the lie going despite that. Of course, Labour then going full neo-liberal BS didn’t help.

  2. Colonial Viper 2

    I wonder if there is an aspect of hush money in this decision

    • AmaKiwi 2.1

      Not possible CV. We Kiwis are so good and pure.

      The problem is to follow the money. The IRD & SFO can do it, but not the press.

      The reason we have no bribery in NZ is because we don’t have anyone to investigate it.

  3. dv 3

    So that is another $3226 per pupil EXTRA

    So theres the message to other schools FAIL for more money

    Bizarre

    Oh no it is to protect the children so they get an education!!!!

    So lets throw some money at the problem!!!

    • dukeofurl 3.1

      Thats nothing the ‘Flag’ referendum sent out postcards, based on those that were returned it was $62 each postcard

  4. adam 4

    Hekia, never letting facts, or good advice – get in the way of an ideological imperative.

  5. mac1 5

    Giving effect to ideology. This is not ineffectual leadership but deliberate implementation of National political ideology, aka as neo-lib looking after your 1%er mates and fellow travellers.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      +1

      National works to transfer public wealth to the rich. This is just another example of that.

      • tc 5.1.1

        Spot on Draco.

      • Jackp 5.1.2

        This is all what it is about. Key’s mates are taking it while the 100 billion dollar debt gets bigger. Opposition has a loaded gun but they have to emotionalize it. I have to agree with what Michael Cullen on that one except to send troops to fight isis. The public has to know about that national debt.

  6. Tom Barker 6

    I’m expecting a huge taxpayer-funded bonus for Serco any minute now.

  7. Ch_ch chiquita 7

    In light of the breaking new about Corrections taking over management of Mt Eden prison I would say admitting another privatization failure is simply something National are not capable of doing.

    • AmaKiwi 7.1

      I would think many Nat supporters must be getting disgusted with these privatization fiascoes. If the Nats don’t cut and run now, by the next election the bills will be even more embarrassing.

  8. ianmac 8

    Great header by the way Micky! 🙂

  9. repateet 9

    David Farrar and his Taxpayers Union mates will be all in a lather at the decision to reward this school with more money and the way the money they have been given has been used. Farrar will be into it boots and all on his blog.

    Exactly how much money has been put into it for how many kids? Where has the money gone?

    Has the place been run by scumbags or the incapable?

    Note: the first two sentence were a joke.

    • Macro 9.1

      The $3m “invested” in this “school” has gone to buying the ‘principals’ a farm.

  10. millsy 10

    National = Private > public

  11. Macro 11

    Nope – it was definitely going to be closed! But you couldn’t do that at the same time as you acknowledged that prison privatization was a failure as well. This is the fall back in an attempt to lessen the embarrassment of what is a hugely embarrassing week for the Govt with two obvious privatization failures – this and Serco.
    Better to bite the cost of further funding on the already $3m misspent (and hoping to look tough) – than have the opposition pointing the finger at this as well. Especially going in to the Nat shindig on the weekend!

    • Gangnam Style 11.1

      Absolutely, especially if you look at the time line the school has to improve, there is no way they can complete the tasks before the end of the school year, so obviously the plan is to have the school quietly disband & hope no one notices. What an abject failure, Parata couldn’t lead a picnic.

  12. Clemgeopin 12

    May be Parata should ask Serco to run the Charter Schools too…….After all, this National government is all about siphoning out public money for private profits.

    Also,
    Replace all cabinet ministers with Serco personnel to run our country. Serco would surely match the inefficiency and hubris of the present cabinet ministers anyway!

    • greywarshark 12.1

      @Clem
      That’s dangerous talk. I thought that but was too afraid to put it in print in case one of them can read those 50 words, understand and remember them.

    • AmaKiwi 12.2

      “Replace all cabinet ministers with Serco personnel to run our country.”

      Already done. It’s called Auckland SuperCity.

  13. Tricledrown 13

    Public school funding is being squeezed while Nationals donors Christian fundamentalist schools get massive increases for failing Cronyism

    • Clemgeopin 13.1

      I have no problem with state-integrated schools, including schools with special character, getting education funding, but I am completely opposed to government funding of non integrated private schools.

  14. greywarshark 14

    National picks favourites who get to win. They have chosen charter schools to win over those with those uppity teachers who don’t realise that they are really just governesses for the wealthy. And the pollies don’t really care about how well kids get eddicated as long as doing the basics is opening up profit centres for all the sharpies sniffing around for gummint titbits.

    Goodbye yellow brick road for most of us, skipping along like Dorothy, Toto, the tin man, the lion and the scarecrow. We are just actors in a fantasy thinking education and skills trading will give us the tools to get a job that will give us respect and a living wage all our lives. Not in the script the gummint has man. Get real, we must.

    What do you think you’ll do then
    I bet that’ll shoot down your plane
    It’ll take you a couple of vodka and tonics
    To set you on your feet again

    Maybe you’ll get a replacement
    There’s plenty like me to be found
    Mongrels who ain’t got a penny
    Sniffing for tidbits like you –
    on the ground

    So goodbye yellow brick road
    Where the dogs of society howl
    You can’t plant me in your penthouse
    I’m going back to my plough

    http://www.eltonography.com/songs/goodbye_yellow_brick_road.html

  15. Save NZ 16

    Lets reward poor performance!

  16. repateet 17

    Following my comment of 24 July 2015 at 5:43 pm:

    “David Farrar and his Taxpayers Union mates will be all in a lather at the decision to reward this school with more money and the way the money they have been given has been used. Farrar will be into it boots and all on his blog.”

    On his blog today I saw the headline “Remove the kids” and thought “He’s onto it, lightning man strikes with the speed of a twerp turned Superman!” But no it’s about some other kids needing help.
    He had the time to save some other kids at 6.45am and do his twerp impersonation on TV3 though but nothing about Whangaruru. Yet.

    He will say something in time so it will give him another opportunity to tell us how even handed he is in his coverage. of charter schools.
    I mean he did mention one bit of the Whangaruru saga in February and that shows he is on a fierce accountability mission. He even said then of the Minister issuing a formal warning about the school, “This is a great example of the enhanced accountability that comes with charter schools.” Enhanced accountability eh?

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