New Zealand kids should be taught by highly skilled professional teachers. Education is the most important gift we can give our children, to give them a head-start in life.
It is wrong that the best teacher and the worst teacher are paid the same. Incentives matter, it’s wrong that the only way for teachers to increase their pay, in many cases, is to take management hours and spend less time teaching kids.
Teachers, as salaried professionals, are undervalued. To attract the best school leavers and graduates into teaching as a profession, we have to lift the overall salary range.
ACT’S RECORD ON EDUCATION
ACT’s proudest achievement is in introducing choice into education. We championed Partnership Schools which are seeing Iwi, Pasifika Groups, community groups and others running new-model schools which are changing kids lives. We don’t believe that one size fits all in education.
Our policy has been to increase support for independent schools – they save taxpayers money, and provide parents with choice in the type of education they get for their children.
OUR POLICY IS TO PAY GOOD TEACHERS MORE
This policy will add $1 Billion into the funding that is available for teacher salaries. On average we will increase teacher salaries by $17,700 per teacher. This will enable the best teachers to stay in the classroom, and elevate teaching as a profession.
The Government surplus sits at $3.7 Billion. That means this policy is affordable and we can deliver improvements in teacher quality alongside tax cuts, while maintaining all core government spending.
We will enable schools to opt out of union contracts. This will mean they gain the flexibility to recognise great teachers by paying them more and rewarding their achievement.
Schools will be able to pay more to attract teachers to fill specialist skills shortages – in areas like science, technology, Te Reo and international languages.