November 04, 2013
Parata defends public interest in teacher pick
Education Minister Hekia Parata says she will appoint members of a new teacher’s organisation because the buck stops with the government.
Education sector unions are up in arms about the replacement of the New Zealand Teacher’s Council, which teachers elect, with the Education Council of Aotearoa New Zealand.
Ms Parata says she wants a professional body like the Medical Council or the Law Society which is focused on the needs of teachers independent of government.
But she says there is a balance to be achieved in establishing an independent organisation that will set standards, register and discipline teachers and lead public discussion on education.
"The education of our babies, infants, children and young people, the government of the day will still be held accountable for that public interest. In making that body statutorily independent, the government of the day has to have some levers to ensure they can be accountable for that public interest, " Ms Parata says.
She says her appointments to the Education Council Transition Board shows the process can create balanced representation.
The board will be chaired by former Auckland Grammar principal John Morris and includes former Labour education minister Steve Maharey, the principal of Auckland’s Newton Central School, Hoana Pearson, Te Wananga o Awanuiarangi vice chancellor Graham Hinangaroa Smith, and Te Kura Maori o Nga Tapuwae principal Arihia Stirling.
Copyright © 2013, UMA Broadcasting Ltd