Friday, 13 June 2008

Holding students back

The government is about to force youngsters who have better things to do to stay in the government's factory schools until they're eighteen, and unsurprisingly the principals of some of the better government schools are unhappy at being forced to play nurse-maid to youngsters who would rather be somewhere else -- perhaps somewhere productive like earning a living.  As Callum McPetrie says, it's not hard to understand why principals are unhappy.

Why would a school principal want to keep students who have already expressed an intention to leave school -usually to go into the workforce- and who would simply cause violence if they were kept back? Why would a school want to waste money on the hiring of new teachers, adjusting wages to compensate for the extra stress put on already-existing teachers, extra school teaching material, and new classrooms for students who don't want to learn?

Libertarianz education spokesman Phil Howison puts the proposal in context:

Detaining students for a further 2 years against their will is a violation of the rights of young New Zealanders, to say nothing of a waste of tax-payer money. It is essentially an admission of defeat for state education - if eleven years in state schools has left over 500,000 New Zealanders functionally illiterate, what difference could adding two years make?

It used to be that students were kept behind after class as punishment for their own failure of discipline.  Now it seems students will be kept behind because of the failure of the school system itself.

1 comment:

  1. Crikey, I can understand them wanting to do such a daft thing if unemployment is high, but that's not the case.

    I guess it's another one of those "let be seen to be doing something, even though no one out there thinks it's an issue, but at least it will distract them from any REAL issues that pop up" policies.


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