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Ministry Duped Reporters, Parents – Black

Monday 30 April 2001

“Professor Black’s Report on the radical nature of the NCEA makes it clear that the ‘communications strategy’ the Ministry used with reporters, parents, and Boards in 2000 was at best an honest mistake and at worst a propaganda lie,” said Concerned Teachers spokesperson Peter Calvert.

Mr Calvert was commenting on the fact that in April 2001, a report by Professor Paul Black of the School of Education, King’s College, London, quietly appeared on the Ministry of Education’s website www.minedu.govt.nz. “The MOE introduction indicates that Professor Black has written a generally positive report and the Ministry has at last the research base to go ahead with confidence. That is not the case.”

“Concerned Teachers pointed out via our 2000 ‘guinea pig’ campaign that radical assessment and reporting models were being imposed on students without a proper trial. In response, we were told time and again that the NCEA was not a radical change, it was evolutionary, not revolutionary and therefore to stop worrying ourselves and parents,” said Mr Calvert.

“NCEA Project Manager, Tim McMahon introduced the 2000 Roadshow for Boards of Trustees with the statement ‘the NCEA is not a radical change.’ Ministry CEO, Howard Fancy, wrote to Principals stressing the NCEA was ‘evolutionary not revolutionary.’ Reporters were also ‘briefed’ on this point. Yet Professor Black’s report states the NCEA is radical,” said Mr Calvert.

“While Black supports the NCEA proceeding, he at least recognises its radical nature and proposes safeguards for the ‘guinea pigs’ involved,” said Mr Calvert.

“CT is appealing the use of the 2000 NCEA Communications Plan to the Commerce Commission as false advertising and asking for rectification in the May 2001 advertising and communications campaign,“ said Mr Calvert.

Ends:

For More information contact: Peter Calvert 021 2111 825 E-mail ConcernedTeachers@xtra.co.nz Website www.concernedteachers.com


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