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$30,000 to be wasted on what teachers already know

$30,000 to be wasted on what teachers already know

26 November, 2010
The Ministry of Education plans to spend $30,000 on “promotional services” to draw people into teaching - at a time when it is very publicly showing it doesn’t value teachers at all.

PPTA president Kate Gainsford was astounded to learn of a request for proposals released by the ministry today, which is designed to attract quality teacher recruits through a ‘review of the reputation of teaching, its image and communications.’

Gainsford said the ministry had shown little regard for value of teachers and their work during six long months of bargaining and it would take more than a glossy advertising campaign to draw people into the profession.

“What they need to do is start listening and genuinely appreciating the value of teachers and the work that they do,” she said.

Gainsford questioned how the ministry could possibly attract people into the profession when every time a potential teacher picked up a newspaper they saw evidence that the government was indifferent.

“The ministry won’t discuss even minor health and safety claims, is unprepared to act on major issues like class size, and now they want to waste $30,000 finding out what teachers already know. This is an insult,” she said.

The ministry already had this information to hand in the form of two reports it had already commissioned, which PPTA had accessed through the official information act – Education Report 2011 Teach NZ Scholarships and Motivations for Teaching, produced by Windshift.

The Windshift research identified barriers to attracting high quality candidates as negative publicity about pay, hours and conditions, over large classes, badly behaved students and that teaching is not a respected profession in New Zealand.

The research also said that it takes more than just advertising to get the best people into teaching.

“Promotional activity to attract graduates into teaching as a first choice career is not enough. Unless there is an honest acknowledgement of the realities and a genuine willingness to invest today for the future, this is wasteful of time, energy and resources,” Gainsford said.


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