The nation-wide political advertisement by the PPTA condemning Charter Schools is inaccurate, misleading and alarmist. It is a disgrace.
Neither the National Party nor ACT have any agenda for dismantling or Americanising the public education sector. Both parties, however, want to see more choice and competition in the education sector including a greater role for the private sector, something the PPTA mistakenly opposes.
Charter Schools have not failed in the USA and Britain as the PPTA claims.
Some Charter schools have of course failed to achieve what was expected of them, just as many of our public schools do. Moreover, a recent analysis by the respected British Economist found that Charter schools in Britain are largely a success, especially in low socio-economic areas. They have raised the effectiveness of education in such areas and brought hope to many despairing parents and their children.
These misleading claims by the PPTA reflects one of the tragedies of our education system; that some 20 per cent of schools leavers are functionally illiterate and as such are doomed to a life of low income and low esteem.
The teacher union’s blind resistance to change and innovation that allows this to continue does teachers no credit.
- Vince Ashworth, Member of ACT New Zealand
This letter was printed in the Waikato Times 16/01/2013