If the Government were to listen to the PPTA and the results of their clearly biased survey questions it would be the end of the PPTA and the education system in New Zealand.
The PPTA want to take ‘for profit’ organisations out of the New Zealand education system.
This would mean the immediate closure of more than 1900 Licenced Early Childhood Education (ECE) centres and would affect more than 80,000 children. The PPTA profits from education, so it is advocating against itself.
The PPTA wants everyone who is not fully registered with the New Zealand Teachers Council (NZTC) out of our education system.
If the Government were to listen and therefore exclude teachers who are newly-arrived from overseas or are otherwise not fully registered with the NZTC volunteers, support staff, private tutors, and informal tuition by hard working and dedicated parents, siblings and family friends, every education institution would immediately grind to a halt and most could not continue to exist. This too would result in an end to the PPTA.
The PPTA are against Partnership Schools because of the for-profit, teacher registration aspects of the policy, but these features are already part of the current education sector. Removing these features from education would have a detrimental impact on the sector as we know it and students would suffer.
The PPTA also likes to claim that the majority of submissions on the Education Amendment Bill were opposed to Partnership Schools. But, the vast majority of the submissions received by the Education and Science Select Committee received were 'form submissions' from the PPTA, NZEI and their Union affiliates. Excluding these left a balanced pool of properly considered submissions.
Partnership schools, known overseas as charter schools or free schools, are not an experiment. Evidence has shown that the best models of charter/free schools have been very successful in raising achievement for students from disadvantaged areas and those with English as a second language. They were first started 20 years ago in the United States by... you guessed it... the teachers unions.
The PPTA is clearly not much concerned about poor educational outcomes from failing public schools. It is not plausible that it is terrified that some partnership schools might fail; it is more plausible that it is terrified that greater parental choice might improve outcomes.
The PPTA survey can be found here
NZEI National President Judith Nowotarski seems to be confused.
In a press release today (here), she has used the words ‘irresponsible and reckless’ to describe education where for-profit organisations can employ a percentage of fully registered teachers and are not subject to the Official Information Act (OIA).
What she has described is the Early Childhood Education (ECE) sector she works in.
Around 43% of ECE centres are run by for-profits, only a percentage of teachers need to be registered and these are not Crown Entities so are not subject to the OIA.
Is she saying the for-profit ECE centres are inferior?
Does she not value the contribution of the ECE teachers who are not fully registered?
Does she want ECE centres to be subject to the OIA?
The Green Party continued with their campaign to deliberately mislead the public about Partnership Schools | Kura Hourua, with Metiria Turei's claim today that the policy will create an elitist education system.
It’s hard to comprehend how anyone could say this with a straight face.
Partnership Schools are specifically targeted at students from low-socio economic areas. They cannot charge fees. They cannot cherry pick students. If they are over-subscribed they will hold a ballot.
The current state school system sees many students from low-income families locked out of the best state schools simply because they can’t afford to live in the right area. Far from being elitist, Partnership Schools will be more inclusive than current state schools.
新西兰行动党信仰自由。自由地选择, 自由地成就自我。我们理想中的新西兰是一个公民享有更多权力, 政府官僚受到极大限制, 更多个人责任感, 更少强制规定的自由社会。
- 政府开支过高。2005年，政府开支占了国家全部收入的29%，目前是35%，为了使经济增长, 我们希望政府开支能降回到29%。
- 我们将会减轻税务, 藏富于民才是结束当前经济不景气的途径。
- 教师工资由校董事会设定， 而非依照刚性的工资标准表。
- 允许学校替换NCEA考试系统, 引用其他的认证方式, 如剑桥国际考试（Cambridge International Examinations）。
- 为负担学生教育费用的家长减少赋税, 以褒奖他们节省了国家开支。
- 将杀人罪分级, 一级谋杀罪犯将被处以死刑并且不可被保释。
- 法律面前人人平等 （取消种族特权)。
- 社区进行公民投票来为自己决策，自主决定如何解决酒牌， 和街头卖淫等问题。
Imagine what might happen if there was a centre-left coalition.
They believe we can just pass a law saying all wages have to be paid above a certain amount. Anyone who was working below that amount would get a pay rise.
They believe we can attain real economic growth by simply printing more money.
Everyone could then buy a new house, car and what not.
They believe the Government can spend millions of dollars on all sorts of wonderful programs, without affecting the private sector negatively, as hey, it’s not like taxes come from it.
Unfortunately that is all fantasy.
But according to other political parties, it seems that there is no reason why you cannot legislate your way to prosperity.
ACT thinks differently.
We understand that wages are determined by supply and demand.
We understand that minimum wages price some workers - usually the young and inexperienced - out of the market. The minimum wage diminishes their opportunity for a head start.
We understand that printing money results in inflation - an invisible tax on savings, which is the key to capital formation.
Not only will printing money fail to stimulate economic growth in the long run, it may also cause recessions and the misallocation of resources in our economy due to the distorted price signals.
We understand that welfare programs, implemented with the best of intentions, can have detrimental outcomes: increased dependence on handouts, high marginal tax rates which remove the incentive to work and the occasional abuse of taxpayers’ dollars.
Furthermore, with the recent crisis in Greece, we understand what happens when the Government goes bankrupt.
Governments cannot spend so carelessly. That’s why ACT advocates for smaller government that operates within a disciplined budget and low taxes, which will not crowd out the private sector and prohibit the creation of wealth.
If we look at other issues such as the "manufacturing crisis”- other parties were quick to blame the current Government and their so called "hands off" approach - as if the Government has not dug its hands into our economy deep enough.
It appears that not only do they lack understanding in sound economic theory, but some economic facts too.
Out of its 33 members, the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) rated New Zealand the second most restrictive in terms of Foreign Direct Investment regulations.
Foreign Direct Investment plays a crucial role in our modern economy. Not only does it contribute to job creation, real income growth and raising our standard of living, but also many other positive externalities such as technology and skilled-labour training.
This is why ACT wants to remove unnecessary regulation and red tape that does nothing except make it harder to do business.
I do not wish to demonise other political parties, because as I mentioned before they do have the good intentions. Unfortunately, as they say, the road to hell is also paved with them.
One of the main insights of economics is that it demonstrates to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.
I believe only ACT's policies, founded on sound economic principals, understands this.
Speech by Peter Jiang to 2013 ACT Annual Conference, The Farm, Kaukapakapa, Saturday, February 23 2013.
On Thursday, I flew down to Christchurch to attend the Orientation Week for Canterbury University.
My goal was to promote ACT on Campus. Currently, ACT has no presence there. Surrounded by the thriving and active youth wings of National, Labour and the Greens, I thought I was in for a hard day.
I was wrong.
A constant stream of young, intelligent, passionate and mostly female students approached the ACT on Campus stall.
They wanted to be engaged with politics.
They liked what we had to say.
The shared our values of less government intervention, personal responsibility, and freedom.
There is a clear market for ACT on Canterbury University. How is it that we have no presence there?
ACT is seen as a party of old, white, business men.
We need to overcome this if we want to be successful.
One of the challenges facing ACT is in trying to show that we have a vital and active role in New Zealand politics and not just for old, white, businessmen.
My postgraduate degree was in understanding the psychology of political groups. The goal of my research last year was to find out why some political groups thrive when they offer nothing to their supporters and why ACT continually struggles despite sharing the values of so many New Zealanders.
What my research showed was that we should be working harder to provide a public presence and doing more to build stronger relationships within the party.
Empirical research shows that the tribe that plays together stays together.
In rituals, this includes coming up with innovative ways to signal to others in your group that you’re a committed member. For example, wearing particular clothes and colours, or performing certain behaviours. Appearance identifies you as a member of the group. Groups that can easily identify who their members are, have a tendency to survive longer.
One reason for this is because in a competitive environment, like being exposed to rival political groups, it helps to know who you can trust to support the team. You can be reasonably certain that the individuals flaunting their commitment can be relied on to have the group’s best interests at heart. Because of its small size in a sparsely populated country, this kind of signalling is immediately more difficult for ACT than other parties.
The focus of my research was on the television show Backbenches as an example of a political event that has ritualistic elements which helps to keep political groups functioning, particularly because of its competitive nature.
If you’ve seen an intense show for Backbenches the first thing you notice is the noise. There’s cheering, there’s clapping, there’s throwing insults and politicians you don’t like. You drown at the people you don’t like and you drown out the people you do.
If we take anything from the kind of behaviours we see at Back Benches, it’s that it’s not all about what you say. What is more important is providing visible support to emphasise the relevance of your group. It’s a good way to foster cohesion within the group because it helps to identify who your supporters are. It also helps to create the perception that a party is successful and has a relevant role in New Zealand politics.
This easy when you’re a large party because larger parties tend to have more supporters and find it easier to have a dominant place in the audience. Unfortunately for ACT, it’s difficult to build a sense of solidarity when our members are dispersed all over the country.
However, NZ First is a small party, but also a successful one. No one knows what their policies are. Winston Peter’s doesn’t know what his policies are. How did they get eight MPs in the last election?
Few people vote based solely on policy. They don’t have the time to do all the research.
No one votes for NZ First. They vote for Winston. NZ First is a personality cult – with a personality cult.
United Future is also a personality cult – but without a personality. Without their personality, these parties will disappear.
We do have good policies. But we need a stronger public image. We also want to be known for our values and policies, not just a leader. As a party, you develop a strong public image by each member showing their commitment.
It’s easy to show your commitment in a large party because you have the luxury of safety in numbers. Because of ACT’s size, we have to rely more on individuals.
Using Backbenches as an example, we know that it’s vital to have a clear presence in the audience. When you’re in a competitive environment it’s hard to get your point across.
We want to be seen as calm, cool and collected when we engage with people. We want people to know what we’re talking about. But it’s hard to be heard, especially when you’re a small party.
That’s why it’s important to also be seen.
We have to rely more on individual efforts. The people who put the most effort in often have the strongest attachment to the group and the greatest commitment to the ideologies of the party.
The fact that there are individuals in this party who do everything they can to make sure New Zealand knows we exist is probably one of the things that keep us alive. It also keeps us together.
So thank you to the people who act as a yellow beacon in a sea of people who want to drown us.
We have one great advantage: Our philosophy is moving in the right direction.
My trip to Christchurch told me that there is a market for ACT. We need to show those students at Canterbury University, and the rest of New Zealand, that we are a party worthy of their support.
If we want to be successful as a group then everyone needs to stand out as people proud to be a supporter of the ACT party and supportive of the people who do their best to fight for our ideologies.
If you want your values of smaller government, personal responsibility and the freedom to achieve to survive, then it’s your responsibility to come up with innovative ways show your commitment to ACT.
Speech by Amy Richardson to ACT 2013 Annual Conference, Saturday, February 23.
My journey with the ACT Party began in high school – when I first became interested in politics and the various philosophies underlying the parties on New Zealand’s political spectrum. But thinking back, it really began much earlier than that.
My parents raised myself and my siblings with the mentality that if we wanted something we had to earn it.
We did our own projects in primary school - my dinosaur dioramas weren’t nearly as awesome as some of my friends’ parents could do; we did chores for our pocket money, and as teenagers we were encouraged to work.
I harassed the managers at my local New World every day for two weeks after my fifteenth birthday until someone finally agreed to interview me!
So from a young age, I learned the value of hard work. I learned people skills - well, some might disagree. And I learned about making sacrifices to achieve bigger goals – like buying my first car! I haven’t had weekends to myself since then, but I’d argue the trade-off was worth it.
These were the kinds of values that led me to seek out a party who didn’t pander to the entitled mentality I saw pervading our country. ACT, with its primary focus on personal responsibility, was – I think – a natural choice.
In New Zealand, we have a staggering sense of entitlement. We think not what we can do for ourselves, our communities, and our country; but what our country, our communities, and anyone but ourselves – in that order – can do for us.
We’re a nation who, for the most part, are happy to get by doing the minimum, taking life as it comes, and always running back to Uncle John and Aunty Helen when things get tough. We’re not a nation of people who take responsibility for our lives, or our choices, or our actions, but crucially, we don’t have to!
New Zealand is a country where systems are in place to comfortably support those who consistently make poor choices and refuse to put in the hard yards to help themselves. I’ve never been able to stomach that. So I went looking for a party who would make the less popular decisions and who, to quote from the campaign a few years back, ‘had the guts to do what’s right’.
ACT is the only party who even thinks to ask the serious questions. Let’s take University students for example. NZ has an incredibly generous interest free student loan system – even Australia’s is indexed to the CPI. Any student who doesn’t wish to partake in that system has the option of working their way through university.
Every student who graduates will, statistically, make more than their less qualified peers. Yet on top of all that, we also throw up to $200 a week of ‘free’ money to students whose parents don’t earn very much.
Now I don’t know about you, but when I think of ‘welfare’, I think it should be going to those of us who have no other options – and students with so many other options (including borrowing interest free living costs should they not desire to work) don’t really fit that bill.
But what an un-PC thing to say!
I settled on the ACT party because there was nobody else who paid more than lip service to the values I hold, and that are crucial for any kind of prosperous future New Zealand.
It isn’t sustainable to keep throwing good money after bad choices – that doesn’t encourage change, or making better choices.
New Zealand is a country that needs ACT.
We need leaders who encourage us to take responsibility for our own lives and to make good choices. Leaders who aren’t afraid to use a bit of stick as well as carrot!
We need leaders who are committed to small government and excellence in education.
We need leaders who stand strong as the political tide washes madly back and forth.
What we need, are leaders like John Banks - principled, self-made men who can inspire us.
And we need leaders after him – like those in Act on Campus.
And I am confident that with the people we have on board in this party, and the people who will come on board, ACT’s future is certain. Quite simply, New Zealand needs us. ACT’s principles are the principles that this country must embrace to prosper.
So I am committed, and I hope you are also, to securing our future.
Speech by Kimberly Hannah, President of Act on Campus Otago, 2013 ACT Annual Conference, The Farm, Kaukapapa, Saturday, February 23 2013
Karran Harper Royal, the Anti Charter School advocate whom teacher unions have paid to parade out from New Orleans, has a lot to hide.
While she claims to represent New Orleans people, it has not been reported that in last year's election for the Orleans Parish School Board, Harper Royal finished third and last with only ten per cent of the vote. The winner, with fifty eight per cent of the vote, was a vocal charter school advocate.
Perhaps that is because, according to the widely quoted Stanford University CREDO study, her home state of Louisiana is one where charter schools have lifted academic achievement for low income and minority students.
Even if Harper Royal did speak for the people of New Orleans, the Partnership School program proposed in New Zealand is quite different to the charter school policy in place there. While their policy was introduced wholesale in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, ours is a pilot scheme that will be a voluntary pilot affecting only those who want to be involved.
The dishonest way that the unions have foisted Harper Royal on New Zealand smacks of their desperation to maintain their self-serving grip on New Zealand children's education.
ACT New Zealand is today pleased to announce ACT’s new Party President – former MP and Minister Hon John Boscawen.
Mr Boscawen will take over the role from outgoing Party President Chris Simmons who has held the position since 2010. Mr Simmons nominated Mr Boscawen for the role and John was successfully elected unopposed to the position of Party President for a two year term commencing February 22 2013.
“I don’t doubt that the task I am undertaking is a difficult one, but I believe the ACT Party has an important role to play in Parliament,” ACT Party President-Elect John Boscawen said.
“ACT was founded to provide opportunity to those who don’t have opportunity and choice to those who don’t have choice. Since 1996 we have stood on behalf of all New Zealanders for freedom of choice without excessive government interference and for personal responsibility; we have made major contributions in Parliament to this cause.
“I believe it is vitally important that ACT is successful in 2014 and returns to Parliament in greater numbers. I will be doing all I can to make that happen,” Mr Boscawen said.
Mr Boscawen acknowledged the significant contribution Chris Simmons has made in his time as Party President.
“Chris has steered the party through some of its most difficult times and has recently led the work to re-establish the party’s direction. Chris has done an outstanding job and on behalf of the ACT Party, I would like to thank him for his commitment and hard work.”
Outgoing President Chris Simmons says it has been a privilege to serve as President of ACT and he is excited about the party’s future.
“ACT is committed to being the champion for those people who wish to get on and be successful in how they raise their families, manage the environment, and grow businesses that operate in the future ‘global village’,” Mr Simmons said.
"Future generations deserve the very best that we can give them. New Zealanders today need to know that our country’s leaders have the vision and courage to position the economy for future greatness. We’ve led the world on many fronts before and we can do it again with the right approach and can-do spirit. ACT will be outlining its vision at our annual conference on Saturday, February 23rd.”
John Boscawen will make his first address as Party President at ACT’s Annual Conference, February 23 2013, Gibbs Farm, SH 16 Kaukapakapa, North Auckland. Click here for more info
The legislation required for Partnership Schools to operate was introduced to Parliament last year.
It is in the final stages of the submission process where all New Zealand citizens, permanent residents, and organisations are able to have their say at Parliament. You are invited to make a written and, if you choose, oral submission to the Education and Science Select Committee.
If you have or your organisation has an interest in the Partnership School concept, then the Select Committee stage is the time to be heard.
In case you have not made a submission before, we have assembled a list of frequently asked questions that may be helpful for making a submission:
You have until January 24th 2012 to do so!
Why should I support Partnership Schools | Kura Hourua?
One in five students currently leave school without a basic qualification. The majority of these students are Māori and Pasifika learners. The economic and social cost of this is high.
A poor education impacts negatively on students’ career prospects, their self-esteem and their view of society. Partnership Schools are focused on raising achievement of our most disadvantaged students.
A one size fits all education system is not in the best interest of our children. Every child learns differently and it is important to have diversity in the education system so that we better cater to students’ needs. Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua will provide more choice and competition in the education sector, including a greater role for the private sector.
Flexibility and innovation in education is important, especially if we want to maintain our world leader status in education. Partnership Schools will educate students in new and exciting ways that are better suited to their learning styles.
Greater flexibility is being given to Partnership Schools in return for higher outcome accountability via a fixed term contract with the Crown. The Crown’s ability to decide not to renew, or to revoke, a sponsor’s contract if they are not meeting performance targets is a key accountability feature.
Experience counts and Partnership Schools will be able to take advantage of that. They can negotiate with the Ministry to utilise the services of qualified individuals with years of experience in a sector (for example a qualified chartered accountant) who have a passion and willingness to teach, but do not hold registration with the Teachers’ Council, provided they pass the appropriate background checks.
Partnership Schools will provide curriculum tailored to meet the needs of their students and the community. Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua will deliver The New Zealand Curriculum (NZC) or Te Marautanga o Aotearoa (TMoA) or they can use or develop an alternative curriculum framework which must be mapped to the principles of the NZC or TMoA.
What is the Select Committee?
A Select Committee is a group of around 10 MPs whose job it is to consider public input on new laws as they are being made. It has the ability to make changes to a bill before it becomes law. In this case it is the Education and Science Select Committee that is responsible for hearing public input no the Education Amendment Bill (2012).
When do I submit?
ASAP! Written submissions close on January 24th.
If you indicate that you would like to appear in person then the Committee may call you after the date.
How do I submit?
As submissions close on January 24th 2012, the best way to do so is to upload an electronic document here (Once you have clicked on the link please scroll to bottom of the page)
What Should I Submit?
There is no set format for a select committee submission, however a good submission should allow the reader to see the following information easily (remember, they may have to read many so it pays to present clearly)
Which Committee you wish to submit to (Education and Science)
Which bill you wish to submit on (Education Amendment Act 2012)
Who is making the submission, and if the submission is on behalf of an organisation, how many people does it represent, how have you consulted them?
Do you wish to appear in person and make an oral submission? (This will likely involve traveling to Wellington however the committee may travel to hear oral submissions in other cities if there are a number of submissions from elsewhere)
Do you support or oppose the bill?
Do you have comments about specific clauses of the bill? (the actual bill can be downloaded here)
What are your final recommendations (remember the Committee can recommend that the Bill proceeds, does not proceed, or proceeds with changes)
The Select Committee stage is an important part of making new laws.
We hope you or your organisation will consider participating by making a written submission and perhaps speaking to it in person.