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Prime Time with Sean Plunkett: Educating for Success




In all the turmoil stirred up by the "Dirty Politics" revelations, the real issues that the campaign should be about have been put to one side.

We're going to try and remedy that tomorrow night with a debate about education.

Hekia Parata has been a controversial Minister as she has introduced a series of radical reforms designed to combat under achievement, particularly in low decile, predominantly Polynesian and Maori schools.

She says:"“If you really want to improve success at school the answer is to help all teachers be better teachers, and invest strongly in principals.

"That’s clear from evidence across the developed world and that is what our Investing in Educational Success initiative does.

“Investing in the quality of all teachers is more important than just adding more teachers.”

Rimutuka Labour MP, Chris Hipkins, is one of the party's rising stars and he takes issue with Parat's claim that class size does not matter.

“Class sizes do matter<" he says.

Ask any parent and they will tell you they want their kids in smaller classes.

“Increasing teacher quality and smaller class sizes are not mutually exclusive.

"Having more time to spend with their pupils means teachers have more time to reflect on their practise, undertake professional development and spend on kids who are falling behind."

This should be a good debate and unmissable for any parent with school age children.

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