May 21, 2010
Teachers and parents who have been angered by the $50 million staffing cuts signalled in last year’s Budget will be relieved that the threat has been withdrawn, PPTA president Kate Gainsford says.
There are however a number of areas of serious concern in the 2010 Budget, and no overarching plan for secondary schools, she said.
“We are pleased the government has realised that a staffing cut of that magnitude would have had a disastrous impact on class sizes and schools’ ability to deliver the curriculum.
“It is also pleasing to see increased investment in high speed broadband and school infrastructure,” she said.
“This kind of investment is making a difference and will continue to do so. It shows far-sighted thinking, in contrast to some of the more short-sighted cuts in this Budget.”
Gainsford was concerned that the 2010 Budget was putting taxpayer money into private hands as a government priority.
Recent PPTA press/media releases.
2010 Budget: Staffing threat withdrawn but no real plan
May 21, 2010
Secondary teachers scapegoats for NZQA blunder
May 5, 2010
Secondary teachers are being asked to pick up the tab for NZQA’s mistakes – a situation PPTA president Kate Gainsford says is unacceptable.
NZQA (New Zealand Qualifications Authority) is required by the government to moderate 10% of all internally assessed student work for NCEA to ensure consistency of marking.
However NZQA has seriously misjudged the number of marking samples needed from schools in the first half of the year to meet the 10% target.
Instead of owning up to the mistake and fronting up to the government NZQA had decided to pass the problem onto teachers, Gainsford said.
PPTA calls for independent look at staffing
May 4, 2010
PPTA president Kate Gainsford is calling for an independent look into school staffing vacancies after the ministry of education underestimated staffing in 74% of secondary schools.
Claims by the ministry that 99.6% of teaching positions are filled were based on inaccurate figures from a flawed survey, Gainsford said.
The ministry survey was based on roll predictions given to schools in September the previous year - and this year the ministry seriously underestimated the staffing in 74% of secondary schools, she said.
“That is 572 equivalent teaching positions.
Dimming the lights at night classes
Dimming the lights at night classes ‘for a brighter future’
February 23, 2010
Dimming the lights at night classes ‘for a brighter future’ – PPTA launches dimming.co.nz
The National Party’s slogan ‘securing a brighter future’ is a far cry from the effects of its policy, says PPTA president Kate Gainsford.
“And nowhere is this more evident than the slashing of adult community education (ACE) funding in schools by 80%,” she said.
Ready, Fire, Aim! Standards advisory group gets it backwards
Government has priorities backwards
February 17, 2010
Setting up an advisory group after the controversial and untested National Standards have been rolled out in schools shows the government has its priorities backwards, PPTA president Kate Gainsford says.
“We have seen this time and time again. What will come next will be a raft of expensive, unbudgeted, ad-hoc groups brought in to prop up a process that was deficient to begin with,” she said.
Education minister Anne Tolley’s claims that she is open to “independent, free and frank advice,” were seriously open to question, Gainsford said.
“Instead of proper thinking and planning, the government has insisted on rolling out an untrialled scheme that is fraught with unresolved difficulties and risks. It is trying to do things on the run without due diligence,” she said.
School choice paper a waste of taxpayer money
“fiscally irresponsible, superficial and glib"
February 17, 2010
The Inter-Party Working Group for School Choice report is a colossal waste of public money, PPTA president Kate Gainsford says.
'Step Change: Success the Only Option', was celebrated last night with top quality wine and canapés in the banquet hall of parliament.
Hosted by ACT deputy leader Heather Roy and attended by the well-heeled patrons of independent schools, it was supposedly designed to benefit the 20% of students who are educationally underprivileged.
Gainsford said the working group’s findings were so confused it couldn’t even agree on a single report. Instead two have been released - one the whole group could agree on, and a second put forward by Roy and Roger Douglas.
“The reports cobble together disconnected bits of research, simplistic generalisations and ‘mum and apple pie’ principles. They gives no evidence of any considered thinking at all – as a research exercise I would have to give them a ‘not achieved,” she said
- Flawed roll predictions signal ‘shambolic’ start to school year
- Investment in education critical for economy
- PPTA releases position on National Standards
- Behaviour action plan disappoints
- National standards threaten NCEA
- Anti-social behaviour plan has little to help teachers on the front line
- Youth Guarantee extravagant, misleading
- Secondary education and the economic recovery
- Time to trust our teachers
- State shouldn’t bail out private schools
- How dense do you want them?
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