February 17, 2016
Top teachers decry charter school push
The president of the Principals Federation says an international study that ranked New Zealand teachers among the best in the world shows there is no need for charter schools.
The OECD study found New Zealand teachers ranked in the top four countries of the world when it comes to professionalism.
Iain Taylor, who heads decile one Manurewa Intermediate in South Auckland, says a critical finding was that professionalism did not drop off in the socio-economically disadvantaged schools as was the case for most other countries.
That destroys the argument that charter schools are needed to address the learning needs of priority students, who are more likely to go to low decile schools.
While Maori students have been historically under-served, that has changed.
"Over the last six to 10 years there has been much work going on from the government and the Ministry of Education down into schools themselves and things are changing so maybe the timing was wrong but I don't think there is a need for charter schools when there has been a marked change in schools at long last," Mr Taylor says.
He says kids from disadvantaged backgrounds are much better off with the top professionals in public schools than in charter schools where they may not even have a registered teacher.
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