Education Council of Aotearoa New Zealand and… Australia
So the hopeful travelers who have been given free tickets on the Hindenburg are now boarding excitedly.
According to the Minister of Education they will be “trailblazers” which promises a lot of excitement for all of us.
She also says that they are among New Zealand’s foremost practitioners and education experts. That would be except for the Australian, Tony Mackay. Is it really the case that we are so short of teaching expertise in New Zealand that we have to pick up an international jet-setting consultant to show us the error of our ways? Especially since he comes from a country that has a shameful record for running down public education. Look at this from an Australian blog dedicated to fighting for greater equity for public schools:
New figures show that private schools were massively favoured over public schools by government funding increases between 2008-09 and 2012-13. Funding for private schools, adjusted for inflation, increased by a staggering eight times more than for public schools. Save our schools
You won’t catch Tony Mackay compromising his OECD contracts by fighting an injustice like this.
Another intriguing appointment to Educanz is Helen Timperley from the University of Auckland and latterly a member of the Professional Learning and Development Review group which was supposed to clean up the mess that resulted from contracting out of professional development. The report has been languishing on the Minster’s desk (probably because it proposed a system that had schools and teachers more involved with the management of PLD). Given that the initial ministry papers on Educanz suggested dropping the PLD spend into Educanz, one doesn’t have to be clairvoyant to see where this is going. Teachers resent paying fees to Educanz and Educanz needs a lot of money because it has acquired a set of extra tasks around professional leadership that should be funded from the public purse and not from teachers’ pockets. Give Educanz the $80,000,000 PLD budget to dish out amongst its consultant friends and solve two problems at once. The door for racketeering will be jammed wide open.
The other Council members (whether they realise or not) are just placeholders. They are there to give a veneer of educational credibility to an organisation that is firmly under the thumb of the minister.
Their puppet masters in government, the Ministry of Education, the Education Review Office and Treasury will pull the strings for more contracting out, more privatisation, more standards for teachers and performance pay and the council members will dance merrily.
A little known fact that may or may not be relevant: The Hindenburg was as big as the Titanic.