Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Govt. Response To Select Committee Reading Report

13 November 2001 Media Statement

Government response to Select Committee reading Report

The Education and Science Select Committee’s report on the Teaching of Reading in New Zealand amounted to an affirmation of the Government’s current literacy and numeracy strategy, Education Minister Trevor Mallard said today.

In its report, the Select Committee made 51 recommendations across five areas: effective teaching practice, teacher education, resources, Mäori-medium education and national issues.

“The Government supports the views that are behind the select committee report and its recommendations,” Trevor Mallard said.

“Our response to the recommendation is divided into three categories.

“We have identified 10 recommendations which will be considered as we develop future work programmes.

“Nine of the recommendations, regarding teacher education will be referred to the Teachers’ Council of New Zealand. The council was established through a law that was passed by Parliament last month. I see it a major vehicle to improve the quality of teacher education and it would be wrong for the Government to pre-empt any decisions the council might make in this area.

“The Government believes the other recommendations are already embedded in Government policy and the results are flowing through.

“For example, the Select Committee echoes the aspirations and concerns of the Government in regard to on the effective teaching of literacy.

“This is reflected in the National Education Monitoring Project’s recent report Reading and Speaking Assessment Result 2000, which contains convincing evidence that the achievement of students in reading is on the rise.

“It was also illustrated last week with a report about ongoing professional development work in Otara and Mangere which has had stunning results in lifting reading and writing skills in that community.

“Other programmes to lift teacher capability is Literacy Leadership Programme which more than 2,000 primary school principals and other professional leaders in schools have participated in. Improvements in literacy have been noticed as a result of this.

“These are just a few examples of some of the incredibly exciting work that is going on to improve literacy in schools. The select committee report highlighted how passionate New Zealanders are about standards of reading and writing in schools. It is a useful report that I am sure will continue to be a reference point for the further development of literacy policies and programmes.

“In the meantime, I encourage all New Zealanders to investigate some of the wonderful work that is going on in this area,” Trevor Mallard said.

Trevor Mallard said the issue of phonics versus whole language learning was not a feature of the report.

“The Act member of the committee has a personal interest in this area and used the report to push her views. The response to coverage of that aspect of the report showed that schools throughout New Zealand have already started using a mixture of learning strategies including phonics. We will continue to support schools ability to make the kind of teaching decisions that suit the needs of their students. I don’t believe the government is in the best position to decide which styles suit children from different communities,” Trevor Mallard said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Sir Michael Cullen’s Tax Reform

To ordinary wage and salary earners who (a) watch a slice of their gross income being taxed every week via PAYE and who also (b) pay GST on every single thing they buy, there has been something quite surreal about the centre-right’s angry and anguished reactions to the Tax Working Group’s final report... More>>


89 Cents An Hour: Govt Plans Fix For Minimum Wage For People With Disabilities

IHC is delighted that the Government is looking into replacing the Minimum Wage Exemption (MWE) with a wage supplement to ensure people with disabilities are paid at least the minimum wage. More>>


Te Waihanga: New Independent Commission To Tackle Infrastructure Issues

The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission – Te Waihanga – will be established as an Autonomous Crown Entity to carry out two broad functions – strategy and planning and procurement and delivery support. More>>


Auckland Action Against Poverty: Motels Profit From Housing Crisis

A single motel which charges up to $1,500 per week per room has received over $3 million worth of Government funds to provide emergency assistance, despite never having a Code Compliance Certificate – an offence under the Building Act – and receiving a series of longstanding complaints from occupants... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Alleged China Relations Crisis

If New Zealand’s relations with China are ‘deteriorating’ then you still need a microscope to detect the signs... More>>


Environment: Government To End Tenure Review

“Tenure review has resulted in parcels of land being added to the conservation estate, but it has also resulted in more intensive farming and subdivision on the 353,000 ha of land which has been freeholded. This contributed to major landscape change and loss of habitat for native plants and animals,” said Eugenie Sage. More>>


Bell Tolls: Big Changes, Grand Mergers Planned For Vocational Training

“At a time when we’re facing critical skill shortages, too many of our polytechnics and institutes of technology are going broke... More>>


Sallies' State Of The Nation: Progress Stalled In Reducing Inequality

The report shows a lack of tangible progress in key areas including record levels of household debt and a growing gap in educational achievement between poorer and more well off communities. More>>





InfoPages News Channels