National finally finds an issue in Education – How will they screw it up?

Kia ora I am Christopher Luxon, I am the leader of the National Party of Aotearoa New Zealand (minus the Aotearoa). Here I am launching National’s new education policy whereby brain tubes installed in playgrounds will suck the succulent child brain matter into National’s new Education baby brain matter collection vat. DO NOT ASK WHY WE NEED BABY BRAINS. Vote National.

Talking to a lot of parents, there is an unease with what they hear their kids telling them what they do at school each day.

Gen Xers and Boomers grew up in an educational philosophy that stated ‘Be the best you can be’. The idea was you were in a constant competition with yourself to perform with personal excellence in the field you did best in.

It unfortunately also used Belle Curve graph ruthlessness that ensured 50% failed regardless of whether they actually passed. That created generations of lost potential. Instead of reform the Belle Curve mentality, we went completely the other way with Tomorrow’s Schools in dumping all the responsibility onto local communities without any of the resourcing.

That manifested a completely different philosophy.

Millennials and under were brought up in an educational philosophy of ‘everyone is special’.

You can quickly see the problem.

Schools seem to have been given carte blanche to define educational achievement as they like with the most important factor being the feelings of the child.

It seems to have produced a brittle generation who require constant nurturing and cuddles rather than stoic self reliance and independence of critical thinking agency.

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And they whinge all the time.

So National’s promise of doing the basics brilliantly in education appeals to many parents who are watching their kids get dumber and insufferably more precious.

Unfortunately National’s Doing the Basics Brilliantly just feels like a rehashed National Standards scam where the testing results will be published publicly and that will create a  league table between schools and that creates a false competition model in education which is really what the Right are trying to do here.

National’s education plan isn’t about the education of your child, it’s a plan to enable private education to gain a greater foothold and influence in NZs public education sector.

Once National can create the league tables, the market does the rest.

I don’t think starving our public education sector of more resources is how we fix anything.

Let’s be completely honest – currently all we are being offered in education from any of the Political Parties are band-aids to haemorrhaging problems within education.

Teachers deserve 4 day weeks + more pay + extra resources + a teacher’s aid in each class + provide bonded scholarships with accomodation for new teachers!

Teachers work miracles with our kids, and as much as I roll my eyes at what the kids are getting taught these days, I’m still in awe of what NZ Teachers can achieve with the little they have.

There are few silver bullets in social policy, education is one of them.

We need to nurture an education environment that respects Teachers and resources them properly because our Schools are central hubs within our community that can and must be utilised and supported more.

Schools need to be used after hours for adult education classes that we should be funding.

Schools should be used to create gardens and farms for local food security and to use in free breakfasts and lunches.

We need to use our schools as entry points for counsellors and social services for the wider community.

We need to fully fully fully fund our public education rather than inject false competition models or new bureaucratic structures and we need to ensure a central curriculum of math, science, physical education and critical thinking are providing the tools for our kids to learn.

That takes far more money and it takes a Government with the courage to tax the fucking rich more so that excellent public education continues to be the egalitarian pillar of New Zealand.


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  1. Everyone gets a partcipant certificate for everything. So all the parents are ‘convinced’ every kid is a star or has little to work on.

    Mean while in the playground…Despite an overhaul of winning and losing rules all designed to get fat kids moving. No fat kids are moving. .. obesity epedimic looms.

  2. The photo with your article somewhat astounds me. This is a man who has just been off work following a positive covid test, so you would have thought he should have been more careful with spreading his germs around, even if he had a subsequent negative test.

  3. without the 3Rs you cannot go on to do what you’d prefer to do
    maybe that’s why we have so many artists and so few sparkies

  4. They will fuck it up the same way they fucked up schools and our public hospitals last time, under invest, run down and then argue for privatisation due to lack of and poor delivery. They (National) don’t have a very good track record when it comes to public services with nova pay and their zero-budgets due to tax cuts for the rich.
    Luxon needs to impress he is down in the polls people are not warming to him. As for the argument about Ginny Andersens lack of experience to do the Police Ministers role, the same argument could be applied to Luxon not being experienced enough to be our next PM.

  5. They will fuck it up the same way they fucked up schools and our public hospitals last time, under invest, run down and then argue for privatisation due to lack of and poor delivery. They (National) don’t have a very good track record when it comes to public services with nova pay and their zero-budgets due to tax cuts for the rich.
    Luxon needs to impress he is down in the polls people are not warming to him. As for the argument about Ginny Andersens lack of experience to do the Police Ministers role, the same argument could be applied to Luxon not being experienced enough to be our next PM.

  6. Martyn, it is not “Belle Curve”.
    That is what Brigitte Bardot used to have.
    It is “Bell Curve”, because the parabolic graph resembles the shape of a bell.
    Apart from that, you have well described the effects that right-wing policies tend to have upon education systems.

    • So the left wing are doing a great job are they . Results show 1/3 of 15 year Olds cannot read to required level and a similar result in maths . Teachers are on strike for more pay because the social problems that the pupils bring to school are enormous.
      Covid played a part which cannot be laid at the governments door but the planners at the ministry of Education should have factored it in .All they have done is increase their work load with the new history project and enforcing a need to learn more Maori protecol. More pay and smaller classes will get better results

      • Hipkins the Chipster,under his watch allowed education in New Zealand to drop to its lowest ebb.
        The Chipster has done a disservice to New Zealand’s children.
        I’m so disturbed by this mammoth failure.

          • Trevor and Bob – it should be pointed out that the 15-yr-olds failing now are the unfortunate kids who endured National’s idiotic policy of ‘National Standards’…
            Do we need more of that?

  7. Mot people can not even comprehend the catastrophe that is descending on the education of our children.

    They are entering school less ready, less able to talk to adults, having heard less words, less stories, less love because of time poor double+ working families who then spend all their free time binge watching or texting.

    This delays their education by years, and pus teachers into the role of parents, and by the time they get to intermediate/year 7-8 they have been hit from the other end – social media and devices and the world they show descending to lower and lower age levels. So thee pre-teens don’t want the nurturing of teachers, unable to listen, think they know everything – just like always. But their media is absorbing their mind int a world they can not connect to their school day, they see no purpose for it. And worse, they are engaged in a perpetual conversation amongst themselves in class or whole year group chats where awful things are bbeing said and then they come to school and struggle to look their teachers in the eyes because of the BS they are complicit in by participating.
    And it’s getting younger.
    In between that squeeze, you have a curriculum that has expectations that are totally out of whack with the programmes that teachers are able to deliver on the ground, factoring class sizes and individual needs- and yet teachers have to waste their time constantly “upskilling” to provide opportunities they’re not resourced for and barely have time to deliver.
    All teachers know how to identify a child’s next step in writing, reading, math, plan and teach for it. They just want the opportunity to do it. And between the needs, attitudes, resourcing class sizes and pointy-headed demands from the mniisty, they just don’t get enough chance to do it.

    But that’s okay, the WEF and their pet Hariri have a rescue package to hack the human being, so the end of the school, the plug-in online learning and brain chips are on route to keep us all productive workers.

    • Yes Paul, well said. I know assigning 1 hour for this, and 1 hour for that, will solve the problems. I can only wonder what extra recording and auditing will be required to ensure compliance.
      Smaller class sizes and better resources would be a far better goal.

  8. I like the policy of Teachers NOT funding the Teacher Council…the Council that covers Teachers, without having Teachers in the Council!…Except 2 Teachers, after Court action forced this…Thank you National…where is Labour on this..

  9. So despite Labour being almost entirely responsible for how terrible our education system is, you still want to have a go at national?
    You’re whinging about the bell curve is precisely how we got to the “everybody gets a certificate” place we are in.
    Some people win, some lose. That’s the way life goes. You can have a schooling system that doesn’t reflect that, but as soon as they enter the real world they get a reality check, unless of course they’re a student politician and then they can go an entire career in Labour without ever having to face their own incompetence.

  10. Most everyone is an expert in education because they remember the ways they were taught, but with expert teaching the student is unaware of being taught and learning. Only bad methods of teaching are remembered.

  11. As an employer I can see the very noticeable decline in reading, writing and basic math skills. I have a couple 20 somethings that are very shit at all 3. They will, bar something quite unusual popping up, always be worker bees and at the bottom end of the scale due to their deficiencies.

    For the look at 3 years when we do we interviews make them read a page of stuff them write about it plus they get a basic maths quizz as well. We’re disappointed at how many struggle with that.

    They aren’t bad or stupid people, generally, but in a world like we have the system has failed to provide them with some basic but very nessacary skills.

    I like the idea an hour or 2 everyday is spent on the basics.

  12. I suspect National’s proposed education curriculum rewrite is just an undercover way of providing an oppotunity to strip Te Reo and Aotearoa history from the school day.
    To make a real difference in education reduce class sizes.

  13. “Standardizing” anything is not the way to do education. Every kid is different, with different personalities, temperaments and learning styles. Finland’s much praised education system has long recognized this. Finnish kids emerge from high school speaking at least 3 languages and with above OECD average maths and literacy skills.

  14. Those here who will criticise the National policy with conspiracy theories are disingenuous. Let’s be completely honest. Our kids are leaving school not being able to read write, and count. If you can’t do that you can’t even get a benefit. Nationals policy allows for more support and looks to be an improvement on what’s gone before. Many parents who care about their children’s future will go for it. If nothing else my grandkids will know the times tables, basic spelling and basic arithmetic. Sort of makes sense to me even though our education system doesn’t put much importance on it.

  15. How about for a start we don’t push mātauranga Māori / Maori religion into science e.g. Mauri or life-force. WTF is the Ministry of Education doing, under Hipkins watch, pushing one cultures religion into science? And what about the curriculum statement that to succeed in Maths, students need to privilege a Maori and Pacifica world view? Utter bullshit.
    Instead of wasting time and resources (MoE has the most consultants btw) on religion and woke dogma, perhaps try and help students succeed? No wonder National is targeting this crap – something needs to change immediately, and they will get traction because most parents I talk to are seriously worried about slipping education standards.

  16. Bradbury you are such a desperate joke. National come up with something completely reasonable but you have to bend over backward to criticize it. I guess you want all the kids kept dumb so they can’t critically analyze and see your Marxist bullshit for what it is.

  17. The New Zealand education system has been slowly failing for a couple of decades. The rot began to set in with NCEA and it’s been exacerbated with this new curriculum. As a primary school volunteer, I have to bite my lip every day as:

    >The kids waste countless hours chanting bullshit karakia (sky father and earth mother??? WTF!)

    > Unxious white wimmin teachers insert random Te Reo words into English sentences (that makes my Maori co-worker’s eyes roll skyward)

    > and the kids appear to do every topic BUT the three Rs.

    My recommendation is to go and look at what other countries are doing. Hint: The teachers unions won’t like what they find.


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