Primary school cancels prizegiving because it discourages non-award winners

Silverdale Primary School has cancelled their end of year prizegiving, and have explained in a newsletter:

End of Year Prizegiving

There has been a lot of talk about the cancellation of the end of year prizegiving. Just to clarify some misconceptions about cancellation of the end of year prizegiving.

1. Sports teams will still be based on skill and a selection process.

2. There will still be placings at school events such as cross country, athletics, swimming, speech competitions. Some of these events have trophies and these will be handed out on the day or at the next assembly.

The end of year prizegiving was used to award children in each class:
– Most improved
– Commitment to Learning
– Classroom Citizen
– Excellence in Literacy and Mathematics

Out of a class of 20 to 30 children how does a teacher choose one child for each award? Don’t we want all our children to improve, have commitment to learning, show citizenship and to have excellence in literacy and mathematics

By rewarding a few we find that it discourages the others.

We are trying to get our children to succeed because they want to succeed and not because of a reward at the end which is subjective at best. The sporting awards are easy to give out, if you win the cross country race you get first, not subjective. Everyone can understand this.

Try explaining to a child that has tried hard all year with their learning that they didn’t get the Commitment to Learning award because someone else was trying harder, this is subjective. How do you judge who tries harder??

We will continue to hand out Principal Awards and Team awards throughout the year, these certificates are based on our values and recognise what children have done.

I hope this goes some way to answer your concern.

From Newsletter 35 (PDF)

Original source: Silverdale [Primary] School cancels end of year prizegiving because it discourages those that do not win awards

Keep in mind that this is at a primary school where they don’t have exams.

There seems to be a bit of contradiction in not giving out ‘subjective’ end of awards but continuing to give out Principal Awards during the year, which must also be subjective. From my experience with Principal Awards (given to grandchildren, they didn’t do them in my day and we called the boss a headmaster) they are rotating awards that include all pupils over time, and often are for very subjective and grand sounding attributes.

Player of the day awards to sports teams are also often rotated.

There are different ways to see this. I understand the need to encourage every child to learn, and never winning an award may well be discouraging. We didn’t get learning awards at primary school in my day and we seemed to survive without them.

But there can also be benefits for awarding those who strive, and who do very well.

Perhaps the Government could follow the lead of Silverdale Primary and cancel the Queen’s Birthday and New Year gong handouts. I have been very discouraged by not winning one (that’s sarcasm – while some community awards and recognition of services may have merit I oppose knighthood and damehood sort of awards).


A triumph of intolerance over intolerance

I don’t like what Stefan Molyneux and Lauren Southern stand for or do – they preach intolerance and promote division. I don’t think they would do any good coming and speaking in New Zealand.

Their on-off-on visit has been controversial, fueled by their own publicity to an extent but far more by opponents and critics who didn’t want them to speak here. Free speech is often overridden by  people intolerant of different views.

S&M were scheduled to speak at an event tonight, with ticket prices originally advertised ranging in price from $99 to $749. They claim they sold out for tonight’s event.

The venue was kept secret until this afternoon to supposedly avoid planned disruption, but that generated yet more publicity.

The venue was announced – the Powerstation in Mt Eden, Auckland. Before Helen Clark had a chance to complain others were far quicker off the mark with threats – the venue owner puled the plug on it.

Those who had organised protests cheered and claimed a win.

If this is the end result it looks like a triumph of intolerance over intolerance. I’m not sure which side of the opposing circuses is the worst.

Free speech is at risk of becoming a quaint historical ideal. It is becoming the survival of the loudest.

Of course people who feel strongly about negative things others might say should themselves speak up, but shutting others up is as problematic as it is futile.

Whether S&M speak anywhere tonight they have made themselves much better known than they ever would have without first Phil Goff and then their new-found critics stoking the fires of their frenzy.

But it is unlikely to be over yet. Tonight we are likely to see more intolerance preached, shouted, imposed, and there’s a planned TV interview in the weekend to keep the publicity alive and kicking.

Is Paddy about to be blacklisted or white anted?

New Zealander with no serious convictions being deported from WA

The West Australian reports that a New Zealander without serious convictions is being deported.

New Zealand-born Joel Royston Makaea, 34, was arrested and taken into immigration detention in Perth on Monday after the Immigration Minister revoked his visa on “character” grounds.

Under changes to the Migration Act introduced in December, the minister has the power to cancel the visa of anyone involved in an organisation or gang that was reasonably suspected of being involved in criminal activity.

The person targeted for deportation does not have to be convicted of a serious offence, or even charged with one.

It is understood he has only a limited criminal history during his time in Australia, with his most recent charges relating to disorderly conduct and driving under the influence of drugs.

Is this going to be another controversial vase?

Mr Makaea, who is believed to be a father of six, is the sergeant-at-arms of the Rebels’ Bentley-based chapter and has lived in Perth since March 2005.

So he moved to WA when he was about 24.

His fellow Rebels gang members do have form, including the current and former presidents of the Bentley chapter, who are both awaiting trial on drug trafficking charges.

According to Australian Visa cancellations under section 501 “association with persons suspected of engaging in criminal conduct” is sufficient grounds for cancelation of a visa.

Immigration and Border Protection Minister Peter Dutton would not comment on the specifics of Mr Makaea’s case yesterday.

He made no apologies for the hard line taken by his Government, saying the involvement of bikies in serious and organised crime was well documented and community safety had to come first.

“Criminal bikie groups sell and distribute ice and are involved in other serious crime,” he said.

“On that basis, through a provision within the Migration Act, I can decide that their visas will be cancelled and they will be going back to their country of birth.

“Coming to Australia and remaining here on a visa is a privilege — not a right.

“If that privilege is abused, then they should expect to have their visa cancelled and be sent packing from our country.”

That’s the new tough Australian approach to visas.

Mr Makaea does have the right to appeal against the decision but would need to demonstrate that he was not a person of bad character.

Assumptiions shouldn’t be made from appearances but he may need to do more than present his photo.

WA bikie faces deportation