Recent PPTA press/media releases.

Link to PPTA webpage Posters and archived releases


Inaccurate charter school media reports

PPTA is in the process of addressing a number of inaccuracies in the media this week about the association’s refusal to work with a Whangarei charter school.

Reports on both One News and the New Zealand Herald contained three significant errors that PPTA is taking action on.

Firstly, the boycott action at Kamo High School was not aimed at students of the Whangarei charter school, but was about an offer that the school made to allow a teacher from the charter school to use a fume cupboard in Kamo’s science lab after school hours. The communication from the principal makes it clear that this was only ever an offer to let one teacher use the facilities.

Secondly, the principal of Kamo High School claimed in her letter to Minister Parata that the “PPTA executive” arrived unannounced for a meeting at the school. This is false. The principal was told several days in advance that the PPTA president was coming to Kamo High School to meet with the branch. This happens regularly all around the country, and a meeting with her was requested, which she rejected.

Thirdly, ACT MP David Seymour claimed in the media that the branch meeting was a ‘stop work meeting’. The meeting with the PPTA president was a lunch time meeting attended by a significant proportion of the branch, in their own time and without any disruption to school activities. 



Minister undermines State Sector Act

25 May 2016 

The education minister is undermining the principles of integrity and honesty in teacher appointments by interfering with a legal decision designed to avoid cronyism.

Today Hekia Parata introduced a supplementary order paper (SOP) to the Education Legislation Bill attempting to water down State Sector Act requirements that all school appointments be made openly, transparently and on merit.

This is despite a legal case taken by PPTA resulting in an agreement between Teach First NZ, Auckland University, the Ministry of Education and the union to work together to uphold the act.

“Our understanding is there has been a government SOP introduced, without consultation and with indecent haste, which would create a separate employment process for student teachers,” PPTA general secretary Michael Stevenson said.

The SOP had been introduced late in the piece, with no opportunity for public submissions, he said.


Charter school ‘pilot’ fooling no one

20 May 2016   

Assurances that ACT’s charter school experiment was just a pilot have been proven false with this afternoon’s announcement of seven new charter schools.

PPTA president Angela Roberts was surprised a new round of charter schools were being opened when New Zealand tax payers had been promised the concept would be a trial.

With a poorly conducted evaluation of the existing schools lukewarm about their efficacy opening more did not make sense, she said.

“There are still a lot of questions to be answered.”

“We have been constantly reassured there would be just a handful of schools which would be robustly evaluated – both of those claims have been proved false,” she said.

“This is not a pilot, it is just a sop to the ACT party’s ideological commitment to favouring the private over the public sector.”


Area school teachers to vote on settlement

13 April 2016     

PPTA and NZEI Te Riu Roa have settled the Area School Teachers' Collective Agreement (ASTCA) – subject to members ratifying it early next term.

The settlement includes a 2% salary increase each year for the first two years and an average of 2.5% for a third.

The pay increases will be backdated to 2 March with two further annual increases on that date in 2017 and 2018.


Charter school authorisation board should be sacked

Grey and white students run down school picture

28 January 2016     

A cohort of students is now collateral damage due to the incompetence of the charter school authorisation board, says PPTA president Angela Roberts.

Today’s termination of Whangaruru’s Te Pūmanawa o te Wairua charter school agreement was predicted two years ago. As well as the range of concerns pointed out by PPTA, the Ministry of Education had warned the authorisation board of the potential fragility of the school, Roberts said.

Those concerns were rebranded as ‘challenges’ in Education Minister Hekia Parata’s media release today. They included;
•    heavy reliance on third parties to take it forward
•    lack of internal capability
•    the difficulty of attracting suitably qualified teaching staff to Whangaruru; and
•    concerns over whether a viable student base exists for the kura

“These are not ‘challenges’. They were pointed out a long time ago.”

“The authorisation board went blithely on with the support of both the education minister and ACT leader David Seymour. It was negligent use of power,” Roberts said.


Valuing teachers