Major problem with education protests

There’s a major problem with today’s education protests. They have been organised by NZEI, who have been trying to motivate and cajole teachers into joining the protests.

See NZ Education InstituteStand up for kids and The NZEI campaign.


The Government is trying to create a crisis in education and impose a business model on our world class education system. This model, known as the GERM (Global Education Reform Movement) has infected other countries by introducing standardisation, competition and test based accountability.

Good grief, world wide conspiracy.

In ECE, the Government says it wants to test ECE’s effectiveness through measuring “outputs”. This may affect funding of services, Te Whaariki and the way we assess children.

But we have the antidote!

It’s all of us fighting to protect a quality education system which is fair and equitable, based on collaboration and trust and where every child’s learning needs are met.

This is a teachers’ union and teachers protesting about Government proposed changes to education. They don’t want to be told how they should teach kids, and they don’t want to be told

Shouldn’t it be parents standing up for their kids?

Shouldn’t it be parents protesting if the don’t like the changes?

Shouldn’t it be parents demanding what sort of educational opportunities the want their kids to have?

  • Nurses don’t protest about what sort of health care people should get.
  • Police don’t protest over how they should fight crime.
  • IRD employees don’t protest over how people should be taxed.

Why should teachers be dictating how they do their jobs and how our kids are educated? They are employed by Government to teach everyone’s children.

They have experience and expertise that can make a valuable contribution to determine what education policy should be,  along with politicians – and parents.

But teachers should not dictate what they will do and what they won’t do in their employment.

What parents want and need should be paramount, and teachers should be prepared to do what is asked of them.

If they wanted to be genuinely…

…fighting to protect a quality education system which is fair and equitable, based on collaboration and trust and where every child’s learning needs are met…

…they would collaborate with parents and politicians and Government officials to work out together what parents thought would be best for their children.

But teachers seem to be confusing their own paranoia, politics and ideologies with their roles as teachers of children and servants of parents.

And what NZEI is saying is that children that don’t do well in the current system, and parents of children who don’t do well, have to either struggle with the current system or drop out and fail – as happens now.

Comparatively we have a very good education system, but it fails many kids. Teachers and teacher unions have to understand that for some kids and parents change is necessary. And it should be the parents of those kids demanding and protesting, not teachers wanting to retain the status quo.

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