Friday, 8 June 2012
You can paint it pink but it still smells like a turd.
And that is the main reason why the Budget "redirection" of funds, via an increase in class sizes, tanked.
It is true that if Hekia Parata was a more experienced politician, the policy may have floated. To the top of the pond as it were. Previous Education Minister, Anne Tolley even managed to make salable manure from a highly controversial education policy, that of National Standards.
Refusing to give ground, Tolley stood right across the metaphorical road from the Union backed "hands Up For Learning", campaign and flogged the National Standards policy for the political equivalent of $1 bag. Parents were divided into camps of support and dissent.The government effectively has it's mandate if the parental voice is divided.
But, facing down the accusations of class size increases and the communities fearful of the abolishment of tech education, Parata would have had to work hard to hold her ground.
The biggest fail for Parata in my books was in not detailing where the funds would be directed to. And when the backdown was announced, the tone was vague and churlish with a nebulous reference to where the diverted funds might not have gone. A proposed $60m investment over four years into improving teacher quality, "could not go ahead immediately".
"Yah boo sucks", Hekia.
Wellington's Karori West Normal School will be relieved and will no doubt reverse it's decision to close it's technology centre:
Wellington's Raroa Intermediate students might be relieved they will receive more than the two tech classes a year in classes of 40 students.
While Whaleoil has bloodlust over the supposed union victory, I'm of the opinion that most Principals will work with policy even when uneasy with the changes. Something must have really stank in this case.