Everyone seems to be back to their 'usual' lives. Teachers and students back at school, workers back at work, including me, so that means update the blog - as no elves updated it for me during my own summer(?) break.
I have just read your party education policy. This letter is written in disappointment that National Party education policy can so blithely ignore the best evidence in education research and policy, and dismay that you appear not to have heard the education hopes, dreams and aspirations that teachers have for their students.
National takes credit for all improvements in the education sector over the past three years; some achievements - such as retention rates in school, are unlikely to have been influenced by National education policy, others are simply manipulations such as 'employed 1600 more teachers"; shuffling funding from one education area to another doesn't double it; league tables encourage some particularly unpleasant uncooperative competitive behaviours so how on earth can your policy blithely state "ensure schools make the most of their facilities and resources and they collaborate rather than compete with each other" or does this only apply to Canterbury?
We'd like you to know that all actual improvements in the secondary education sector can be attributed to school communities, the hard work of parents, boards, students, teachers and, most importantly, quality teaching.
Nothing much to do with education - but everything to do with stereotypes and, of course, what is published under the heading 'research'.
The trigger was the ongoing conversation in this office about stereotypes: gender, age, ability, ethnicity, technological prowess, looks i.e. physical characteristics (eye of the beholder of course) ... good schools, bad schools, good teachers, bad teachers, unions .... got the picture?