Recent PPTA press/media releases.

Link to PPTA webpage Posters and archived releases

NCEA threatened by government meddling

25 August 2015

The government’s target of 85% of students achieving NCEA level 2 risks undermining the qualification and encourages ‘credit farming’ in schools, warns PPTA.

NCEA was a qualification teachers had committed to making work because they knew it was a better system for students than the previous one, PPTA president Angela Roberts said.

“But the way that it’s being misused now, thanks to government pressure, risks damaging it beyond repair.”

A paper for PPTA’s annual conference released today The NCEA: can it be saved? Sets out an array of problems with the qualification caused by political meddling and a lack of willingness to address long-standing, fundamental issues.


Charter school policy made up on the fly

14 August 2015    

Today’s announcement of changes to charter school funding and an application round for new schools to open in 2017 shows the government is scrabbling to save a failing policy.

“The exorbitant amounts that some of the charter school operators are banking as surpluses or paying themselves as ‘management fees’ obviously has the Minister alarmed,” said Angela Roberts, PPTA President.

This year one of the charter school operators is being funded at $50,000 for each student they have at the school, and they already own the land they are based on, so their property costs are minimal.

“A few years ago David Seymour said we have the best charter school policy in the world. We’ve seen one school miss all its performance targets and instead of being closed, given more money, and others stashing away their funding hand over fist.”


Unions, ministry collaborate for PB4L Conference

12 August 2015  

An international behaviour specialist who has provided advice to president Obama is just one of the drawcards at the Positive Behaviour for Learning (PB4L) School Wide conference this week.

Dr George Sugai will give a key note speech about classroom behaviour management and behaviour support as one of the conference’s international speakers.

He will be joined by Dr Lucille Eber from Illinois who will speak about how schools can support students by partnering with mental health providers and Northland principal Mina Pomare-Peita who will talk about how positive behaviour works for Maori students.

Kiwi classrooms and corridors, the story continues is the theme of the conference, which will be led by PPTA this year. It is a collective bid by groups such as PPTA, NZEI, NZAIMS, NZPF, the Ministry of Education and the School Trustees Association to create a supportive environment in schools that discourages negative behaviour.


Primary job shortages not mirrored in secondary

29 July 2015 

A survey from March 2015 shows that secondary schools are finding it difficult to recruit teachers for many positions.

“The experience in secondary schools is very different from that in primary with regards to recruitment of teachers”, PPTA President Angela Roberts said.

“While many teachers in the primary sector are finding it difficult to get secure jobs, in secondary schools the number of job ads has been climbing in recent years, and it is increasingly hard to recruit teachers in the sciences, maths, technology and Te Reo Māori,” she said.

A 2014 Ministry of Education report on teacher supply noted 47% of secondary teaching jobs were re-advertised, while the figure in primary is 22%. This was an increase from 2013.

The PPTA survey also showed the proportion of teachers leaving to non-teaching jobs has been increasing in recent years.

“As teachers’ salaries have been growing at a rate slower than inflation and significantly slower than many other professions, it’s understandable that other career options look more attractive,” Roberts said.


Massive surplus for cash cow charter

1 July 2015

A Whangarei charter school has banked an operating surplus of more than $2.4million, thanks to funding well above the amount regular schools receive.

Audited financial accounts released to the charities commission show the He Puna Marama trust, which opened a charter school last year received $3,897,323 in government funding to the end of 2014.

Just $1,464,093 of this has been spent on setting up and running the school, which last year was funded for 50 students and six teachers.

PPTA president Angela Roberts was disturbed to see such a surplus when there didn’t seem to be a spare penny to spend on other schools in the area as their buildings rotted around them.


PPTA members vote to boycott Educanz nominations

23 March 2015

PPTA members have given us the strongest indication yet that they want nothing to do with the undemocratic Educanz nominations and appointments process, says PPTA president Angela Roberts.

In a recent membership-wide ballot, 94.9% of those who participated voted in favour of a motion to not accept nomination or appointment to the Educanz council nor participate in the body’s consultation processes.

“Effectively, the ballot result means that anyone who puts their name forward for nomination or accepts an appointment won’t be in a position to claim to speak for secondary teachers,” she said.

“Members of Educanz must understand that they will serve the minister and the government of the day ‒ not the teaching profession.”