The independence of the Education Review Office has been seriously called into question following news they re-wrote a damning report on the state of early childhood education following pressure from the government, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
“The Education Review Office (ERO) are supposed to be an independent watchdog. Their reports and research are supposed to be independent. Re-writing their reports after government pressure is applied through the Ministry of Education seriously compromises that independence.
Hekia Parata is living in a parallel universe if she thinks cutting funding for early childhood services with fully qualified staff will result in higher quality and better outcomes for children, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
“Today in Parliament the Education Minister first tried to blame Labour, then she tried to deny National made the funding cut, then she claimed she didn’t know, then she tried to say it wouldn’t matter.
A review of education law is timely but the Government must ensure it is a genuine examination of New Zealand’s education system and the future needs of schools, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
“Since the Education Act came into effect 26 years ago a lot has changed for teachers, students and school communities.
Education Minister Hekia Parata’s decision to prioritise participation over quality has resulted in complaints about early childhood education centres soaring by 46 per cent in a year, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
“The Ministry of Education’s annual summary of complaints against ECE services and Kohanga Reo shows 360 were lodged in 2014, up from 246 the year before.
Quality teaching will always be far more important than school buildings, but that doesn't mean we can't deliver on both, Labour's Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
"The Government is spending hundreds of millions of dollars rebuilding old schools, and that's a good thing, but they need to invest in teachers’ professional development and the support to go with it.
Government funding cuts are hitting home with kindergartens being forced to lay off teachers, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens – formally the Wellington and Rimutaka Kindergarten Association – this week wrote to parents advising them that Government funding cuts meant they would have to make changes to ensure their 85 kindergartens and home-based services stay viable.
Hekia Parata’s decision to cancel a review of home-based early childhood services is just the latest in a long line of embarrassingly poor judgements that have blown up in her face, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
“Not long ago Hekia Parata quietly shelved a review of home-based services, saying the National government would rather focus on boosting participation.
A former ACT party president and current chair of the Board overseeing charter schools has slammed the Government’s attempt to whitewash an ‘independent’ evaluation of the schools, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
Documents released by the Ministry of Education show charter school cheerleader and former ACT Party president Catherine Isaac expressed serious concerns about the government-commissioned charter school evaluation by consultancy firm Martin Jenkins.
The use of third parties to collect so-called ‘voluntary’ donations shows underfunding of education is forcing schools to rely on handouts from parents, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.
“This week the Ministry wrote to all schools warning them against using third party agencies such as debt collectors