Well, judging by the huge spike in activity on the blog and Facebook page, I can categorically say this is another one of those weeks for NZ education.
On an Up!
The week began with David Shearer’s speech outlining Labour’s stance on many of the main educational policies currently being foisted on NZ by National, and oh what a speech. Finally Labour caught the public’s eye and people other than educators began to ask questions. Thank goodness, and not before time.
Then, while we were all riding high on a wave of hope, Aunty Paula announced another of her beneficiary bashing policies, this time making it sound like anyone on benefit has no clue how to raise a child and must be threatened into action, whereas anyone not on benefit can do as they please. I’m not saying there aren’t those out there that need guidance, help and even a sizeable nudge to give their kids a fair chance at health and education, but to tar everyone on benefit with that brush is outrageous, and the policy itself, well man what a totally cruel way to go about ‘helping’ people.
Meanwhile John Banks was getting deeper and deeper in the mire thanks to his dodgy or, more likely, selective memory regarding anonymous donations, and calls for his resignation (yeah like that would ever happen) or sacking got louder and louder and are still bouncing off the deaf ears of John Key.
But surely that was as bad as it could get in one week?
Information, misinformation, confusion, and distress. That’s the only way to put it, and Christchurch has had enough. No-one is arguing that changes weren’t inevitable given the quakes and the aftermath, but the way it was dealt with caused and is still causing such distress and surely could have been handled better. Calls are coming from far and wide for an explanation of what is being discussed, what has already been decided, and how those conclusions were come to.
The Green Party is worried that the Government is exploiting the crisis in Christchurch to push through their unpopular education agenda – read here and are demanding clarity regarding the criteria for deciding the schools’ futures – read more here.
- Parents are distressed
- Principals are in tears and shocked
- Pupils are dismayed
I can’t begin to imagine what will happen in the weeks ahead, especially for Canterbury, but one thing’s for sure,
people are not happy. Not at all. And more voices are starting to whisper one simple but very important question…