Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Maxim Institute - real issues - No. 86

Maxim Institute

real issues.

this week: No. Eighty-Six 23 OCTOBER 2003

Real Issues looks at some facts

Due to a staff event, we take a different approach with Real Issues this week. The following trends and statistics in family and education are a motivation for Maxim to search for a better way.

Family

* New Zealand has the developed world's highest rate of births outside of marriage (44%), and the third highest teenage birth rate (after the USA and UK).

* 27% of New Zealand children grow up in fatherless homes.

* Since 1970 the rate of marriage has decreased 66%, while the divorce rate has tripled.

* Our birth rate is 1.9 births per women; this is lower than needed to replace our current population without migration.

* New Zealand is spending at least $5.7 billion a year as a direct consequence of family breakdown - that's 5.5 percent of our Gross National Product (or $3,000 for every taxpayer).

* 110,000 people receive the Domestic Purposes Benefit which also supports 190,000 children.

* In 1970 there were 28 full-time workers for every person on a full-time benefit (excluding superannuation). Today only four workers support each beneficiary.

* Australian government research has found that for every dollar spent on a child brought up in a two-parent family, the government spends $10 on a child brought up in a single-parent family.

* The largest government department is the Ministry of Social Development, which oversees a budget of $13 billion for welfare.

Education

* Since 1960 central government spending per head of population (in today's dollar terms) has increased 660 percent on education.

* 20% of school leavers in 2002 did not have any formal qualifications.

* The 2001 International Progress in Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) reveals serious weaknesses in literacy levels and ranked New Zealand children 13th in overall reading comprehension.

* New Zealand's PIRLS performance placed it near the bottom of the ladder among English-speaking countries. This trend represents a decline from its performance in similar studies carried out in earlier years (1970 and 1991).

* A UNICEF league table of educational disadvantage shows that New Zealand has one of the poorest rankings for 'bottom end inequality' - a measure of the extent of the difference in achievement between children at the bottom and at the middle of each country's achievement range. Only Belgium scored lower.

* 19% of New Zealand 15 year-olds (11,000 of 59,000) are performing well according to a fixed international benchmark for reading literacy.

* Only 51 percent of New Zealand Year 9 (Form 3) pupils have mathematics teachers who have studied that subject as a component of their degree.

* Of the 1999 teaching graduates, 34 percent had left the profession within two years.

* In 2002, there were 395 'stand-downs' (suspensions) as a result of assaults on staff. This is up from 344 in 2001 and 361 in 2000.

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK - William Hazlitt (1778-1830)

The love of liberty is the love of others; the love of power is the love of ourselves. (Political Essays, 1819)

To subscribe send a blank email to: realissues@maxim.org.nz

Real Issues is a weekly email newsletter from the Maxim Institute. The focus is current New Zealand events with an attempt to provide insight into critical issues beyond what is usually presented in the media. This service is provided free of charge, although a donation to Maxim is appreciated. Items may be used for other purposes, such as teaching, research or civic action. If items are published elsewhere, Maxim should be acknowledged.

Key principles - The Building Blocks of Civil Society http://www.maxim.org.nz/main_pages/about_page/about_keyprinciples.html

Maxim Institute 49 Capehorn Road, Hillsborough, Auckland. Ph (09) 627 3261 50 Acacia Avenue, Riccarton, Christchurch. Ph. (03) 343 1570

Email: maxim@maxim.org.nz Web: http://www.maxim.org.nz


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Suffrage 125: NZ A Trailblazer For Women

“We acknowledge the work of Kate Sheppard, Meri Te Tai Mangakāhia, and all of the suffragists who tirelessly campaigned for the vote. We also acknowledge the men who supported the cause and voted for the Bill to pass.

“Today we also need to ask each other: how we can continue to make our country a fairer and better place to continue the legacy of the suffragists.

“Aotearoa New Zealand has a female Prime Minister, we have women in cabinet. And I’m here as Acting Minister because the Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter is on maternity leave. New Zealand is a good place to be a woman!” More>>

 
 

Asylum: Refugee Quota Increasing To 1500

“The quota increase will take place from July 2020. In the meantime, we will work to increase the number and spread of refugee resettlement and support services. We need to make sure we’re prepared for this change in policy.” More>>

ALSO:

'Post-Settlement Era': Māori Crown Agency To Be Established

Cabinet has approved the final scope of the Māori Crown portfolio and agreed to establish an agency to oversee Government’s work with Māori in a post-settlement era, announced Crown/ Māori Relations Minister Kelvin Davis. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Military Roles In Iraq & Afghanistan

The politics of the deployment extension have degenerated into a slanging match about whether the previous National government was right or wrong to make the initial commitment to Iraq – and whether the extension is a responsible thing given our joint training role in Iraq with Australia, or is hypocritical in the light of prior statements made by a previous Labour leader... More>>

ALSO:

Commissioner To Be Appointed: Govt To Dismiss Board Of Whitireia And WelTec

Education Minister Chris Hipkins has made a preliminary decision to appoint a Commissioner to Whitireia and WelTec to address the two polytechnics’ financial woes. More>>

ALSO:

Open Government Action Plan: Government To Proactively Release Cabinet Papers

The Cabinet papers will be released no later than 30 business days after a Cabinet decision. This process will be in place for Cabinet papers lodged from 1 January 2019... More>>

ALSO:

NZ Initiative: Evidence Of "Huge" Government Waste

It is not so much that spending is being literally wasted. Rather the best performing countries are achieving much better outcomes relative to their spending. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels