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

 

PPTA govt briefing to counter ‘destructive’ advice


12 December 2008

PPTA government briefing to counter ‘destructive’ advice to ministers

PPTA is publicly releasing its briefing papers to the incoming government in a bid to counter simplistic and potentially destructive advice to ministers.

PPTA junior vice president Kate Gainsford said both the Ministry of Education and Treasury’s briefings to the new government have shown a complete lack of practical understanding of what works for students and teachers.

Much of the advice was a throw-back to the 1990s, where theoretical context took precedence over practical concerns, Gainsford said.

“It is full of the same tired old simplistic clichés – it is the educational equivalent of a get-rich-quick scheme,” she said.

Gainsford was particularly amazed to see both the ministry and Treasury suggest moving away from lower class sizes, with Treasury claiming investing lower student-teacher ratios produced “low returns”.

“The advice completely fails to take into account the fact secondary teachers see a number of classes every day, and if each class has 30 students, that’s a huge workload for teachers.

“It is no good for the students either. Research shows that parents want teachers to spend more one on one time with their children but students are simply not going to achieve when teachers are stretched to find that time”, she said.

Gainsford also feared a proposed shift to areas with “high returns”, such as improved accountability for student achievement would lead to bureaucratic “standards for the sake of standards”.

“If neither department is prepared to do its homework on complex issues like this, they need to go back to the drawing board,” Gainsford said.

To counter this PPTA offers its own practical advice from teachers at the coalface.

“PPTA understands the complex issues around implementation and will continue to put its resources into ensuring the unintended effects of policies are considered in the search for positive outcomes”.

The briefing papers have already been received by the new government and are now available on the PPTA website (www.ppta.org.nz).

They include information on class size and staffing, curriculum, special education, disruptive students, adult and community education in schools, leadership in secondary schools, NCEA and operations grant funding, among other issues.

PPTA trusts the National government will continue to ignore outdated advice and listen to the voice of reason, Gainsford said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
IHC Tribute: Colin Meads

"While Colin is best known for rugby, to us he is one of a small number of distinguished IHC New Zealand Life Members recognised for their significant support for people with intellectual disabilities," says IHC Chief Executive Ralph Jones. More>>

ALSO:

Howard Davis Review: Tilting at Turbines - The Trip to Spain

Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon have now both broken the Big Fifty barrier, which seems to have brought a whole new level of angst to their midlife adventures ... More>>

Review: A Rose By Any Other Name Would Smell As Sweet

The Royal New Zealand Ballet has accepted the challenge of this heart-touching tragedy and largely succeeded. More>>

ALSO:

NZ's First Male IAAF Gold: Tom Walsh's Historic Shot Put Victory

Although feeling very sore but with a great feeling Tom Walsh took his place as number one on the victory dais to receive his much deserved gold medal. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Review Of Books: Q&A: Hard To Find Books

"Unfortunately we are in crisis and this friendly dinosaur faces extinction… Our only hope is to try and raise funds to buy the building and restore it to its glory, either fully funded or with a viable deposit." More>>

Kid Lit: Lost Mansfield Story Discovered At Wellington Library

Previously undiscovered letters and a story written by a young Katherine Mansfield were recently unearthed in Wellington City Library’s archives by a local author researching a book about the famous writer. More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland