Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


Report finds values education disastrous


The current direction of values education in New Zealand is potentially disastrous, says ‘Kids Adrift’, a report for the Maxim Institute by author Paul Henderson.

In an in-depth look at changes in the values education curriculum since 1993, Henderson asks whether the values and methods used to teach kids values are capable of meeting the demands of society in the twenty first century. Kids Adrift finds that they are not.

Mr Henderson says, “What was designed to bring about peace and cohesion through values language and education is in real danger of creating new levels of confusion.

“In the interests of promoting tolerance in the curriculum educators have embraced pluralism. While that is not a bad thing in itself, values education has gone a step further, saying that all values are equal and insisting that moral claims are all relative.”

In the process, Mr Henderson says, educators have stripped values of their context and bled them of meaning and authority.

“The problem is that society cannot tolerate everything. We are now at the point where it is almost impossible to say what should not be tolerated. And this creates contradictions in the classroom and in the rule of law. “Children are left without a foundation for right or wrong. This is leading to greater confusion, apathy and cynicism. There is an absence of any passionate commitment and instead a polite sterility.” The central finding of Kid’s Adrift is that values need anchorage and should reflect and reinforce parental and community beliefs. It recommends that schools find and teach common values within our diverse traditions and communities. Former Headmaster of Auckland Grammar, John Graham, says Kids Adrift starkly reveals the forces that shape the way values are taught in New Zealand schools.

“Parents will be disturbed to see to what degree our children are being sold short by an education system which no longer understands how to form character, and in which any and every value has equal status.

“Henderson’s recommendations to turn the situation around need to be looked at seriously,” says Mr Graham.

Paul Henderson is a graduate of Aberdeen and Cambridge Universities. He has taught in Africa, Europe and Asia. A summary report is available for media, along with the full 99 page report on request.

For more information and comment contact: Scott McMurray, Maxim Institute Tel. (09) 627 3261 or 027 222 1174

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


NZ On Air TV Funding: More Comedy Comes Out Of The Shadows

Paranormal Event Response Unit is a series conceived by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi as a TV spin-off from their highly acclaimed feature film What We Do In The Shadows. More>>


Mars News: Winners Announced For The 2016 Apra Silver Scroll Awards

Wellington singer-songwriter and internationally acclaimed musician Thomas Oliver has won the 2016 APRA Silver Scroll Award with his captivating love song ‘If I Move To Mars’. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Salt River Songs by Sam Hunt

Colin Hogg, a longtime comrade of Sam, writes in his Introduction that, ‘There is a lot of death in this collection of new poems by my friend Sam Hunt. It’s easier to count the poems here that don’t deal with the great destroyer than it is to point to the ones that do.’ More>>

Electronica: Restoring The World’s First Recorded Computer Music

University of Canterbury Distinguished Professor Jack Copeland and UC alumni and composer Jason Long have restored the earliest known recording of computer-generated music, created more than 65 years ago using programming techniques devised by Alan Turing. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Almost Getting Away With Murder

The Black Widow by Lee-Anne Cartier: Lee-Anne Cartier is the sister of the Christchurch man found to have been murdered by his wife, Helen Milner, after an initial assumption by police that his death, in 2009, was suicide. More>>

Howard Davis: Triple Echo - The Malevich/Reinhardt/Hotere Nexus

Howard Davis: The current juxtaposition of works by Ralph Hotere and Ad Reinhardt at Te Papa perfectly exemplifies Jean Michel Massing's preoccupation with the transmigration of imagery in a remarkable triple echo effect... More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news