Major education ‘reform’ plan to be announced today

The Government is announcing ” a complete overhaul of the education system from early childhood right through to post-secondary schooling” today. It is commonly thought that Labour works closely with and for teacher unions, so they will presumably be largely behind the proposals.

Stuff: Convincing parents it’s time for substantial education reform won’t prove easy

The Government is on the brink of its biggest test and the measure of success will be proving educational reform on a scale not seen in almost three decades isn’t just change for change’s sake.

Schools are no strangers to policy changes – as the world evolves, it’s up to principals, teachers and school communities to keep up with the sometimes frightening pace of things like technology.

But on Wednesday Education Minister Chris Hipkins, who arguably already has the worst job in politics, will lay out his plan for a complete overhaul of the education system from early childhood right through to post-secondary schooling.

Since 2002 there’s been the introduction of NCEA and National Standards, a proposal to scrap the way schools are funded through deciles, the closure of Christchurch schools and a u-turn on policy to increase class sizes.

The Tomorrow’s Schools model, which was introduced under then-Prime Minister and Education Minister David Lange in 1989 was educational reform that had never been seen before.

Under Hipkins, Tomorrow’s Schools look set to be Yesterday’s Schools when he announces a three-year work programme to review the entire system.

At least there are some benefits in teacher unions and groups being willing to work with the Government in looking for improvements in our education systems, in contrast to the last nine years where teacher groups (and Hipkins) have strenuously fought National attempts.

But it doesn’t stop there – it’s understood the review will also lead to change in the early childhood area, polytechs and school property.

While parents will welcome more state-of-the-art classrooms for their children, stomaching so much change in other areas could be a scrap the Government has underestimated.

Parents, students and teachers won’t mind something new if it’s better than what they had before but Labour is already fighting off attacks of “ideology-driven policy” when it comes to scrapping National Standards.

Hipkins has criticised the last Government over pursuing ‘ideological’ reforms, but is being criticised of the same thing (albeit different ideologies).

115 Comments

  1. robertguyton

     /  February 21, 2018

    Now this sounds exciting! But what will it involve? The Government cleared the “education” decks of National’s dross quickly and now has new ideas to offer. Good.

    • You think it’s exciting but have no idea what it will involve?

      You have a habit of blindly supporting some things and blindly opposing others.

      • robertguyton

         /  February 21, 2018

        “The Government is announcing ” a complete overhaul of the education system from early childhood right through to post-secondary schooling” today. ”

        “You don’t think the announcement sounds exciting, Pete?
        Why’d ya write a post about it then?
        “Now this sounds exciting!” is what I said, and I say it again, Now this sounds exciting!

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  February 21, 2018

          Exciting isn’t necessarily a good quality.

          • PartisanZ

             /  February 21, 2018

            I’m glad you said that Miss Kitty because it sounds boring as fuck to me …

            A ‘complete overhaul of the education system’ would mean finding an alternative to school itself … at least for a significant proportion of students …

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 21, 2018

              I just meant that exciting can be a frightening thing as well.

              Overhaul of the education system, spare us. I do loathe the weasel word ‘holistic’.

          • david in aus

             /  February 21, 2018

            I am going to speculate a complete overhaul of the education system could mean:
            1. Homeschooling for everybody with IT access, or
            2. All education in Maori only, or
            3. Name change for the Ministry of Education
            4. Teaching via Youtube
            Who knows but it sounds exciting!

    • adamsmith1922

       /  February 21, 2018

      Robert is easily satisfied. This review seems more like a means to avoid taking any decisions. Hipkins spent years saying National hadn’t any ideas,but clearly never spent any effort on developing alternatives. Hipkins is unfit to be In this role.

  2. Corky

     /  February 21, 2018

    Hope for the best but expect the worst.

    Key words and concepts to look out for:

    1-Community.
    2- Inclusion.
    3- Individual student focus.
    4- Holistic.
    5- Learning flow.
    6-Broad focused learning.

    I wonder where the three R’s will come into this? Oh, that’s right, they won’t. If they concentrated on the three R’s, those university teachers who help 20% of their students with remedial education would be out of a job.

    • robertguyton

       /  February 21, 2018

      National crashed our education system while they were in power; we tumbled down the international ladder of educational achievement. This Government, this enlightened Government has already swept away some of the stupid changes made by National and now looks to be making even greater moves toward getting us back up there with the best in the world. National caused great harm to our reputation and our education system; thank Jacinda they’ve been booted out!

      • Gezza

         /  February 21, 2018

        National weren’t the teachers Robert. If we’ve tumbled down the educational ladder isn’t that a teaching issue? Teaching of simple English spelling & meanings, for example, (and ignoring the typo) has been an obvious failure for nearly 40 years, ever since the slack method of teaching spelling at primary school changed to encouraging free expression & worrying about correcting spelling later.

        I’m quite happy to wait & see details of the education changes be announced. Any improvements in education outcomes should be valuable – but I don’t see you making any reasoned case for blaming our falling down the international education rankings on politicians.

        What’s the connection, & what type of educational ladder are you talking about?

        • robertguyton

           /  February 21, 2018

          National and the retrograde changes they made to our education system are entirely responsible for the significant fall our international standing took while Key was PM, Gezza. I’m amazed you are unaware of the details of this and equally amazed, nay shocked, that you blame teachers for the fall in educational standards and achievement in New Zealand over the past decade. Quite frankly, I expected better from you.

          • Gezza

             /  February 21, 2018

            Hmm. I’m not blaming teachers for falling education standards over the past decade robert I’m asking what measuring standards you’re talking about?

            If they are a measure of how standard sample groups of students perform in subject knowledge tests compared to similar groups overseas, how is any slippage down the comparative international rankings attributable to National, exactly?

            You may be right. But if you’ve got a case explaing that – what is it?

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              *explaining

            • robertguyton

               /  February 21, 2018

              Gezza – contrast and compare these two statements:
              ” If we’ve tumbled down the educational ladder isn’t that a teaching issue? Teaching of simple English spelling & meanings, for example, (and ignoring the typo) has been an obvious failure for nearly 40 years…”

              ” I’m not blaming teachers for falling education standards over the past decade…”

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              robert, compare & contrast these two phrases:
              “obvious failure for 40 years”
              “falling education standards over the past decade“.

              Basic literacy & numeracy standards have been falling for 3 or 4 decades.

              Stop faffing about. What is your case for linking educational failings to National? What are the particular reasons that you attribute our slippage down comparative international rankings to National?

            • PartisanZ

               /  February 21, 2018

              You guys are talking about the education system as though its separate from society … separate from life almost …

              I noticed yesterday the statistics department do that too nowadays. They talk about education in terms of economics …

              “Basic literacy & numeracy standards have been falling for 3 or 4 decades.”

              Big clue here … !!!

              The terrible ‘Orwellian’ socialist indoctrination ‘education’ system of the 50s, 60s and 70s, inveigled into us via free milk in schools, the strap, cane, dunce-hat and shaming, can’t have been all that bad after all …?

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              God you come out with some strange things to support PZ.

              The free milk in schools might’ve been a hangover from early Labour government policies, not sure. The idea was to try & benefit kids nutritionally, not harm them. I was glad to see it end because it was stacked in crates just inside the primary school gates & used to taste “off”.

              The dunce hat never got used in any of my schools.

              The strap was misused by some psycho teachers at secondary school to try & beat understanding into adolescents who didn’t “get” something because they were useless teachers who didn’t know how to engage a class & find a different way to explain something to them.

              On rare occasions it might’ve been justified for severe misbehaviour like bullying (usually an all out bashing) by some thug-type arseholes that no amount of work by the school nurse or counsellor, or detentions, would’ve stopped. But I considered it was massively over-used & used unfairly.

              Shaming was mostly done by our Latin teacher, Cabbage, who was just an athletic marathon runner & arrogant prick. I loathed him & it was mutual. I gave him the flick after one year. We would’ve both been happy with that.

              Education’s not separate from society. We got a good grounding in the important literate & numerate stuff needed for everyday living, basic science, education, social interaction, respect for other people (in theory), but not in teamwork.

              Learning teamwork came at work, eventually.

              There was never a lack of opportunity to build on that basic learning if anyone wished, & that’s even more so now with online options & the internet.

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              Thanks for those links robert, I’ll have a read.

            • PartisanZ

               /  February 21, 2018

              Gezza – given the opportunity to go to school voluntarily when it suits them, I reckon many if not most kids could easily get “a good grounding in the important literate & numerate stuff needed for everyday living, basic science [and] education(?)” in about 2 hours a day …

              The social interaction and “respect for other people” fostered by and encouraged at school is not worth mentioning, same as “teamwork” …

              This “behavoural stuff’, much of it resistance to compulsion [as might be considered ‘normal’], is distorted beyond compare by school itself, and takes up the remaining 4 hours per day of schooling …

              You’re describing an education system designed to produce ‘units of production and consumption’ for an economic environment deemed, designed and organised in Darwinian fashion … It takes a shitload of indoctrination to force a human being into that mold.

              ‘Education’ – whatever non-standardised forms it might take – could instead facilitate human beings self-actualization for their social system … and their continually re-actualizing their social system …

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              If kids want to go to school when it suits them it’d likely be chaos trying to plan & teach classes full of kids at all different levels of age & interest. The pupose of the education system isn’t to turn out masses of dumb robotic low paid employees as you often argue – it’s to teach basic skills & hope to enable students to have choices about what they want to do after they’ve got those.

            • PartisanZ

               /  February 21, 2018

              Unclear of me … I should have said “Given the opportunity to begin attending school voluntarily …”

              So much of the neoliberal ideology is based on ‘freedom’ … on anti-compulsion …

      • Richard

         /  February 21, 2018

        Jacinta “booted” nobody out. She just got real lucky thanks to Winston.

        • Blazer

           /  February 21, 2018

          ‘lucks a …lady’.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  February 21, 2018

            Corks, it is highly unlikely that 20% of lecturers (they are not called teachers at that level) have to help their students with remedial education !!! Or even that 20% of students would need it. Either way, it’s not credible.

      • adamsmith1922

         /  February 21, 2018

        All hail Tsarina Jacinda and the mad monk Hipkins, as according to the book of Guyon all problems will be solved by this review. Highly unlikely.

  3. alloytoo

     /  February 21, 2018

    One word comes to mind here, “indoctrination”.

    The current model isn’t working for Labour, vaguely ambitious kids see through them at about age 13.

    Only the really dense still subscribe to socialism by the time they reach their 30’s.

    • Blazer

       /  February 21, 2018

      you have been well…indoctrinated….

      • alloytoo

         /  February 21, 2018

        Exhibit A, I’m optimistically inclined to assume he’s 12.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  February 21, 2018

          You are indeed an optimist.

          • PartisanZ

             /  February 21, 2018

            The whole thing about the status-quo, what you’re used to – corporate-capitalist, free-market, globalisation, materialism, “they’ve turned everything into money and addictions” anti-democracy – is that you don’t notice it …

            And you don’t realize you’re being indoctrinated …

            • High Flying Duck

               /  February 21, 2018

              Your posts leave the distinct impression you’re no stranger to the inside of a re-education camp or two Parti.

              Capitalism = BAD, Capitalism = BAD, Capitalism = BAD……..

            • Blazer

               /  February 21, 2018

              @HFD,you yourself,concede there are many ‘brands’ of Capitalism.Socialism has different shades too.Q-should the creation and allocation of ‘money’ be left to…private individuals?

            • PartisanZ

               /  February 21, 2018

              As someone said or quoted on here recently, “Had we only ever been rugged individualists we’d never have emerged from the cave” …

              But look HFD [Corky, sorethumb & others] don’t take my word for anything … Bow down, kowtow, supplicate and listen in awe to your hero Jordan Peterson … [this guy REALLY DOES talk too much! By the time he’s finished digressing you’ve forgotten what the topic is, assuming he ever comes back to it] …

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              Rugged individualists would’ve been the first to move out of the cave for a bit of peace & quiet & to get away from people endlessly haranguing each other over whether just one of them should invent fire or it should be group effort.

            • Corky

               /  February 21, 2018

              Never heard of the guy.

            • alloytoo

               /  February 21, 2018

              Thing is about the “status quo” is that it doesn’t exist, the world is constantly changing and disruption is constantly on the horizon.

              Never mind that markets are not necessarily about money.

            • High Flying Duck

               /  February 21, 2018

              So Blazer, you agree that I do see the nuances of capitalism and socialism (even if it is by use of the pejorative “concede”).
              My point was that Parti does now – basically to Parti all of life is a neoliberal cluster fuck.
              Your other question is a whole different topic on which I have no interest in delving in this post.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 21, 2018

              I meant that you were optimistic about Blazer being 12 😀

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              Never heard of the guy.
              Bruce Ugg. He thought he’d cornered the fire-making market with twirling sticks & using dried grass, but he forgot to patent it. The rest is history.

    • Mefrostate

       /  February 21, 2018

      This is a ridiculous allegation, and it’s disappointing to see you with 7 votes up. There’s no credible reason to believe Labour are reforming education so they can teach children to vote for them. It’s on par with those who believe National were keeping immigration high in order to import voters. Ridiculous.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  February 21, 2018

        Who are the idiots who believe that about National ? That is really funny 😀 Some people will believe anything, as long as it’s daft enough 😀

        • Mefrostate

           /  February 21, 2018

          I’ve seen some of the anti-immigrant crowd at reddit making those kinds of arguments. But it’s just as stupid as the one being made by alloytoo here (and upvoted by 9 people).

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  February 21, 2018

            I have never heard that one before, thank you ! 😀 How could anyone seriously imagine that ? ‘Lord, what fools these mortals be.’

            • Mefrostate

               /  February 21, 2018

              It’s not that far off from American conservatives arguing that Democrats are trying to import their voter base, since hispanics overwhelmingly vote liberal.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 22, 2018

              It’s what one would expect there. I suppose that there are people everywhere who will believe anything.

              Let’s say, for argument’s sake, that it’s true (eyeroll) How many would have to come in to make a real difference.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 22, 2018

              ?

          • alloytoo

             /  February 21, 2018

            Mefrostate having a snowflake moment…..9 people appreciated the hyperbole.

            The real question however is:

            Given their disregard for the children in Charter schools in favour of ideology, how can you honestly expect their “reforms” to be in the interests of the children?

            • Mefrostate

               /  February 21, 2018

              I actually didn’t sign up to debate you on charter schools, so lets leave that aside for now.

              Hyperbole is based on exaggeration, which implies you still think the education review will produce a small amount of pro-Labour indoctrination. Is that correct, or do you revoke the point in its entirety?

  4. PDB

     /  February 21, 2018

    Stuff: “It is understood Education Minister Chris Hipkins will release a three-year work programme on Wednesday that details extensive overhauls as part of a coalition agreement between Labour and NZ First to develop an “enduring 30 year approach to education”.

    So the 7% (now 3%) party is now having a huge say in how we run the entire Education system by overhauling the system and putting in place a 30 year plan? Is this part of the reason why Ardern was so keen to deny there is an official coalition document with NZL First whilst Peters was keen to have it released in order to brag on what he had been promised?

    The Greens left out again………how…..sad. Hopefully the ‘power’ doesn’t go to their heads.

    • Patzcuaro

       /  February 21, 2018

      The coalition document between Labour and NZF represented 44.1% of the vote, not just 7%. Based on the latest polling it would be 51%, that’s up 7%, they must be doing something right.

      • PDB

         /  February 21, 2018

        But how much of a say has Winston had on the new education policy – at the very least 50%?

        And what do we have here?

        NZL First education policy for 2017 election (policynz): “NZ First. Hold an education hui to develop a 30 year education plan.”

        Labour never went into the election with this policy hence the 7% party (now 3%) is the tail wagging the dog.

        .

        • Blazer

           /  February 21, 2018

          you are only…guessing.

          • PDB

             /  February 21, 2018

            “coalition agreement between Labour and NZ First to develop an “enduring 30 year approach to education”

            “NZ First. Hold an education hui to develop a 30 year education plan”

            Sounds like two totally different things to me Blazer.

            • Blazer

               /  February 21, 2018

              ‘ut how much of a say has Winston had on the new education policy – at the very least 50%?’

            • PDB

               /  February 21, 2018

              Probably why I put a question mark there Blazer…..chances are Winston wasn’t signing up with Labour without getting a VERY good deal.

        • Patzcuaro

           /  February 21, 2018

          It seems that you are clutching at straws in your attempts to discredit the government. All parties would have gone into the election with education policies. Holding a meeting or hui to set a way forward for the next 30 years seems like a sensible idea. I do question the 30 year bit as the world is changing rapidly and what is right now might not be in 15 years let alone 30.

          More sensible to wait and see what comes out of the meetings before criticising unless you believe anything the government does is wrong regardless, in which case it will be a long 3 years or more for you. The “baby” may well be at school before your lot get another crack at things.

          • PDB

             /  February 21, 2018

            The only “clutching at straws” is you in now changing the actual discussion to something totally different as you are wrong. It is yet to be seen if this is a good idea or not but this ’30 year plan’ is what Winston went to the election with (not Labour), and even then not one of his key issues.

            The left moaned constantly that ACT was able to get 10 or so partnership schools up and running for their small share of the vote but here Winston is going to have a huge say in changing our whole education system based on 7% of the vote? How hypocritical is that?

    • alloytoo

       /  February 21, 2018

      A nasty part of me is inclined to think that this is the biggest squirrel they could think of for the Charter School debacle and as such we’re going to find it big on buzzwords and short on detail.

    • alloytoo

       /  February 21, 2018

      At least they were “Transparent”……….

  5. Gezza

     /  February 21, 2018

    Yes read that Jo Moir article this morning when it was headed Exclusive:

    It’s obviously come from well-placed “sources” who are authorised to speak to the media instead of just proving a trailer. 🙂

  6. High Flying Duck

     /  February 21, 2018

    Finally they will come up with a system where learning isn’t so much about “knowledge” as it is about “feeling good about yourself”.

    No more NCEA – Participation Certificates for all!

    • PDB

       /  February 21, 2018

      Schools will soon be providing kids all their meals, housing and basic needs such as Sky TV, the latest smart phone and frequent overseas trips.

      • robertguyton

         /  February 21, 2018

        You’re in panic mode, PDB, a sure sign that the Government’s doing well.

        • PDB

           /  February 21, 2018

          I’d imagine your house has the 2 paper cups and a long piece of string instead of smart phones Robert?

          • robertguyton

             /  February 21, 2018

            Are you keen on a flame-war, PDB? I’m reasonably adept with words, where you are, sorry to say this, clumsy, so I don’t fancy your chances. I’ll give you an example, so you don’t just think I’m spouting:
            Do you use a smart phone to call people who are in your house?
            Your (dull) insult indicates that you are too lazy to walk (apologies if you’re disabled and unable to get about – these things can’t be magically known).

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  February 21, 2018

              You just gave us an example: I’m reasonably adept with words, where you are, sorry to say this, clumsy, so I don’t fancy your chances.

              Clumsy.

            • PDB

               /  February 21, 2018

              That told me Robert! Point out where I say the paper cups are both at your house and you may be onto something!

            • PDB

               /  February 21, 2018

              “your house has the 2 paper cups and a long piece of string”

              Not be taken literally Robert…

            • robertguyton

               /  February 21, 2018

              I rest my case. Carry on without me, PDB, Alan seems to want to help, though his contributions might serve only to increase your confusion.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  February 21, 2018

            Pants, do you remember making ‘phones’ at school with tins or whatever was used at that school, and what fun it was ?

            I remember how amazing it seemed that a shoebox camera could take photos….and that a crystal set radio could pick up radio stations. Much more exciting than an ordinary old camera or radio !

    • Blazer

       /  February 21, 2018

      most important thing in life…is feeling good about yourself….keep working on it…

      • PDB

         /  February 21, 2018

        Pleasing yourself is something you are obviously very good at.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  February 21, 2018

      No more NCEA – Participation Certificates for all!

      Exactly how NCEA was conceived.

  7. Alan Wilkinson

     /  February 21, 2018

    Who needs NZ Government-certified teachers when the best in the world are available online? The future of education doesn’t lie with teacher unions.

    • High Flying Duck

       /  February 21, 2018

      If they can sort out the socialisation and interaction aspects properly so kids still congregate and interact off their phones and computers, then I agree – education can be provided in numerous ways and better than classroom settings using technology.
      I hated classroom and lecture hall study, as I learn through visual stimulus and reading, rather than listening to lectures.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  February 21, 2018

        I’m like that too. My first wife was the opposite. Courses for horses.

  8. Zedd

     /  February 21, 2018

    Im glad to hear that this Govt. are ‘reviewing’ the Education policies of the last Natl Govt.; dominated by privatisation & charter schools etc. How do you expect to get ‘Quality Education’ when you have: unqualified teachers & dodgy record keeping.. stories of students being passed, when they did not even complete the standard curriculum ?
    I think they should return to standards of education (use to be called 3 Rs).. not just ‘everything online’ as I think Natl were looking at. There are stories of kids with 30+WPM keyboard speed, but they cant actually WRITE the alphabet with a pen on paper ?!!

    “The Matrix is all around you, Neo !”

    • PDB

       /  February 21, 2018

      Zedd: “the Education policies of the last Natl Govt.; dominated by privatisation & charter schools”.

      All 10 of them or so!

      • alloytoo

         /  February 21, 2018

        And according to Willie Jackson underfunded. (one of his reasons for supported their removal)

    • High Flying Duck

       /  February 21, 2018

      They are looking at overhauling & replacing Tomorrows schools and NCEA, both of which were Labour Party policies Zedd.
      NCEA has only just become remotely acceptable in terms of learning and outcomes, so it stands to reason they will look to change it again.

  9. PartisanZ

     /  February 21, 2018

    The human race stands on the threshold of becoming exponentially more truly democratic than ever before, for the first time in our history …

    This extraordinary new ‘potentiality’ cannot help but affect an education system designed to churn out every sort of worker needed to run a Yorkshire cotton mill …

    Consequently, the favoured and more highly educated mill owners haven’t exactly put out a ‘Welcome’ mat …

    • Gezza

       /  February 21, 2018

      The human race has stood on the threshold of becoming exponentially more democratic than ever before since the end of the 2nd World War. The availability of information has existed in free & literate democracies certainly since then & state-funded education systems have been available to enable students & other people to access it.

      The internet has made it even more freely available but its made so much information – good & bad, accurate & inaccurate, important & trivial – available that there’s still a good case for a basic teaching education system to be freely available & for people to know employees in complex areas such as trades & technical or scientific fields have a properly assessed understanding of the requirements & knowledge needed in thise areas.

      These aren’t people operating a Yorkshire cotton mill. The people who end up operating Yorkshire cotton mills are the people who lack education & skills to go beyond the basics. Those basic literacy & numeracy & general science skills are still the fundamental grounding that enable most people to go out & do their own thing.

      There’s nothing much really to stop others in NZ from adding to that basic learning or even just ignoring what they’ve learned & simply doing their own thing, except the requirement to make sure that whatever they do they can pay for what they need or want, or how they want to live their lives. Except maybe poverty, disability, poor parenting, education system failing them individually and other factors I’m sure you could enumerate.

      And that includes advocating for changes to how society works & coming up with & selling some better ideas that enuf people will eventually embrace to result in change.

      It’s going to be interesting to see how the interconnectedness & availability of info via the internet & modern mobile technology bring impact democracies and authoritarian governments for young people around the world at the same time as so many in rich developed countries seem to be becoming obsessed with trivia & narcissistic, home-bound pursuits. And as automation & AI take away so many basic jobs.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  February 21, 2018

        Don’t knock people operating Yorkshire cotton mills. My grandmother was employed there as a young girl to tie up the broken yarns underneath the looms. She married a young local chap and together they emigrated to the other side of the world with their baby daughter where they had another son and ran a small grocery business. Both of their children went on to university, obtained post-grad degrees and had respected professional careers.

        There’s a lot more to character and competence than what gets taught and measured by formal education.

        • Gezza

           /  February 21, 2018

          I’m not knocking them – I’m knocking PZ’s apparent idea the education system is only designed to only teach kids just enuf to work at basic jobs in the factory-type equivalent of them for life.

      • PartisanZ

         /  February 21, 2018

        Gezza – People sometimes accuse me of looking at the world through ‘utopian’ tinted spectacles but yours takes the cake …

        What came after WW2? The Cold War … Korea … Malaysia … Vietnam … Cambodia … McCarthyism … ‘Reds under the Bed’ … et al.

        These and many other ‘fear and insecurity’ inducing activities, along with corporate control of the media, especially in America, led to exponentially LESS democracy … until the counter-culture of the late 1960s gained a foothold …

        Yorkshire Cotton Mills require cleaners, labourers, loaders, supervisors, floor managers, designers, managers, directors and a whole raft of different workers …

        There’s plenty preventing Kiwis adding to that basic learning … For instance, that basic learning takes 6 – 8 hours of your 5 day week, including travel, as it prepares you for 8 – 12 hours of your ‘adult’ 5 – 7 day working week …

        If you can’t or won’t recognize the reality of inculcation and indoctrination into the system in which you live – acculturation – and the difficulties this poses to changing that system, then there’s no point in further discussion. Why did indigenous peoples resist the White Man?

        Alan – My NZ born grandmother went to England in 1905 and within months was promoted floor manager of a Yorkshire cotton mill, so I’m not knocking the people …

        There’s also a lot more to character and competence than what can be measured by “professional careers” …

        • Gezza

           /  February 21, 2018

          If I take the cake mate it’s because you keep baking it. You’re not looking at the workd through rose-coloured spectacles, you’re looking at the world through the blackest dark glasses. What caused those scares was the result of World War 2 where authoritarian regimes tried to wipe out demacratic societies.

          Of course there was scaremongering & patch protection but there were also invasions of democracies by countries with absolutist actual toralitarian regimes espousing the principles of collective endeavours.

          And those things are still happening all around the world. Our generation helped bring about the end of Apartheid & Vietnam but then went on to produce another generation of cannon fodder & fake & corrupt democracies and authoritarian regimes arose elsewhere all around the world as rotten Communists & rotten tribal or religious “Democracies” battled & slaughtered each other & their own people for supremacy & regional or local control.

          The best Democracies still offered people more individual freedoms & rights than the unreplaceable authoritarian totalitarians whose leaders or systems have been toppled eventually by their own rottenness.

          Should we improve democracy? Change the way our economies work to spread the wealth better? Sure, now sell how, and for what, to enuf people to make it happen. Define a better system & sell it. In a democracy when enough people believe and see how it can be better & that a better system will actually survive & thrive – it’ll happen.

          But if you think the education system is just designed to make everybody dumb & susceptible to manipulation, that’s stupid. Plenty of educated human beings are being exploited by conspicuous consumption & consumerism, but those are personal choices people make to succumb to it – & if that’s not being taught in schools it should be.

          Economic systems & impacts are things people can learn about any time when they have enuf information & time to get right into it. The debates rage endlessly. Consumerism & the impacts & subtle methods & of advertising we learned about in 3rd form – as part of the state approved curriculum. Don’t they teach that any more?

          There’s always a point in discussing these things, PZ. There are always arguments & complexities to be debated over the specifics.

          The reason I couldn’t stand that teacher Cabbage I mentioned earlier, by the way, was because his method of shaming & belittling students was constant, extreme, personally insulting sarcasm. I’ve detested constantly sarcastic people ever since.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  February 21, 2018

            Cabbage was probably a sad human being, Gezza. Maybe looking backwards into Latin times rather than forward into non-Latin times was too much for him and made him isolated and bitter and twisted.

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              Well, no he was always very happy, especially with himself. We speculated he was probably into self-love, if you know what I mean. He never used the cane, just had an arrogant manner & a really scathing nasty streak. It caused others to physically & verbally bully the slower kids all year, because he’d effectively publicly told everyone they were fat (or whatever “defect” he picked out) & lazy – and they deserved it.

          • PartisanZ

             /  February 21, 2018

            I’m not debating specifics Gezza, I’m debating generalities …

            The problem with school is school itself … as we know it …

            We are heavily acculturated by our education system, for the benefit of maintaining the system of which it is part … despite that system’s many flaws …

            This need not be so.

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              School nowadays is nothing like shooling was when we went through it, PZ. I come across kids nowadays who love it, find it interesting, challenging, look forward to going to it. Back in my day me & my mates mostly just hated it.

            • PartisanZ

               /  February 21, 2018

              How statistically representative a sample is you happening to encounter an unspecified number of kids who love school nowadays?

              And even if they are representative of a majority of kids who love it, what about the minority of kids who don’t …?

              Hence I’m skeptical about these reforms being “major” just as I’m skeptical about the system staying the way it is.

              To have an inflexible ‘systems justification’ education system that serves only some of its participants – even a majority – is to defeat the meaning of the word “education” and any higher edification, improvement and human development purposes it might have …

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              PZ – Well, obviously I represent a statistical sample probably similar to you.

              Why do you think our education system prevents any higher edification, improvement & human development? To help clarify –

              A. What do you mean by
              1. higher edification
              2. improvement
              3. human development?

              B. How has it prevented yours?

  10. Mefrostate

     /  February 21, 2018

    From TVNZ, the actual areas for review/reform:

    * Tomorrow’s Schools – the 1989 reforms that created the current self-managing school system

    * home-based early childhood education

    * school property

    * “programme of change” for vocational education – including polytechnics

    * NCEA system

    I think an overhaul of the education system would be beneficial, but from these points I’m a litle skeptical of the scope & direction. Will withhold judgement until we hear more.

    • PDB

       /  February 21, 2018

      It could be a worthwhile exercise if truly cross-party.

      http://educationcentral.co.nz/what-would-new-zealand-education-look-like-under-a-nz-first-government/

      “Ultimately, (Tracey) Martin would like to see cross-party, cross-sector collaboration on the future direction of New Zealand education. She thinks we’re in need of an Education Hui to help co-design a way forwards.”

    • Corky

       /  February 21, 2018

      1-* home-based early childhood education.’ That may spell trouble for someone.

      2- NCEA system. That would be ideal…but, if they replace it, will the new exam be ”evidence based” like the Cambridge Exam that is recognised across the world? Highly unlikely because the concept of failure must be introduced.

      • High Flying Duck

         /  February 21, 2018

        I was a big proponent of Cambridge, but it is being dropped by many schools as it doesn’t meet NZ needs as well as NCEA, which has been improved and refined to make it a workable if still imperfect system.

        I have no issue with looking at Education and how children are taught. I worry that the person heading it is beholden to the Teacher Unions, who will do anything for the kids – as long as it doesn’t affect their members in any way shape or form.

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  February 21, 2018

          My grandson just switched from Cambridge to NCEA and is celebrating a noticeable reduction in homework for his final year.

          • Corky

             /  February 21, 2018

            Is he sitting NCEA 3 or 4? I say that because they basically give NCEA 1 and 2
            away.

  11. Alan Wilkinson

     /  February 21, 2018

    The Labour Government will decide how you are taught and by whom. In that, nothing will change.

  12. david in aus

     /  February 21, 2018

    NZ is the highest spenders on public education in the OECD. I will anticipate that Labour will blame our educational underperformance on the “underspending” on education for the past 9 years by National. As night follows day, and there will be no one in the media to call out Labour on their lies. Nice little protection racket that they have.
    data.oecd.org/eduresource/public-spending-on-education.htm#indicator-chart