14 Nov 2007
Minister must act to rescue school
The high level of public concern over a decade of ill-conceived changes at the Correspondence School – including a select committee inquiry – mean the Minister must step in and stop the latest attempt at restructuring, PPTA president Robin Duff said today.
“This is the fourth try in 10 years to find a structure that works for the school, and it looks like the worst yet,” Mr Duff said.
“In all that time, parents and teachers have been denied representation on the school board in favour of ministerial appointments who can seek to impose idealised solutions with no accountability and no basis in the reality of teaching,” he said.
“Correspondence School chief executive Mike Hollings has selectively used the statistics on students’ achievement at his school in an attempt to justify a grandiose plan that will massively increase the number of middle management positions at the school at the expense of a reduction in the number and quality of teachers.
“Getting rid of all the subject specialist leaders in the secondary school will cause incalculable damage. They are experienced and dedicated curriculum leaders and teachers who have the support of the teaching staff,” Mr Duff said.
“Heads of departments are to be replaced by a plethora of micro-managers. A teacher with students in more than one region will have more than one team leader and could also have more than one curriculum leader. And instead of these being colleagues who work alongside them, the new managers will either be general regional team leaders or non-teaching curriculum leaders.
“This latest effort at restructuring the Correspondence School will be disastrous for students and the school and must be halted until after the Education and Science Select Committee has considered the issue,” Mr Duff said.