Further down Neo-Liberalism Lane.

Two days ago I saw a tweet from a Principal friend, asking what charter schools were. Naturally I was curious to follow the thread that resulted from his question. Then it began…

Like most of us in the teaching arena we were probably shocked, but then not. It follows the National Party direction down ‘business model’ avenue. “It’s all about freedom of choice and the free market,” they hum. We should be adding, “Children are not products in your factories!” to the soundbite war.

Here’s a slightly predictable article from the nzherald, praising the charter school proposal and giving teachers another serve. Below is a comment I posted (which has 23 likes but not that I’m counting).

It’s interesting that the majority of comments are, likewise, anti the idea.

So lastly, here’s a small shot across their bow. For what it’s worth. And yes, Mum, I’m trying to stay positive.

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2 thoughts on “Further down Neo-Liberalism Lane.

  1. I find the NZ Herald articles and the comments that follow a woeful reminder of what NZ Educators are up against. I relate consistently back to the part of Sir Ken Robinson's 'Do Schools Kill Creativity' TED where he talks about the fact that everyone is an expert on education. They've been to a school and been at school so therefore they know what is best!
    I've boiled reading these articles and also left comments like you. But really I don't think the true understanding will ever get through unfortunately. It seems that the majority of people feel like we are hiding things and scared that our inabilities will be exposed. It's such a shame that there is little respect for us as a profession.

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  2. You're so right. I've had lots of chats with colleagues about the perception teachers have in the community. Unfortunately I think the soundbites have damaged our image – “Our schools are failing you!” we're told. Or, “One in five children are failing.”

    There is definitely a lot of ground for us to make up. But, recently, I think I've come to the realisation that for many parents of the children we teach we will always be finger painting facilitators. It's hard to shake that. Sadly.

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