The last week or so has been an interesting one for school leaders. One week we were planning for when and if we might have to close, come Monday, it was all on - schools closing the next day for most students and closed for all students by the end of Wednesday. Schools across the country were to go “full remote mode” by Thursday morning. So how did our schools fare? It is safe to say that schools around the country sat somewhere on a long continuum ranging from “we got this” to “sh#t, we better start planning”. The reality is that, for the most part, schools and educators have rallied together and have managed to patch together an okay plan for the time being.
And therein lies the problem - a) It was, for many, patched together and b) nearly universally, it is a plan that will suffice for the time being.
Over the last week it feels like our understanding of what we are dealing with and going to be dealing with is becoming increasingly clear. This is not going to simply be a four w…
It has been disappointing to see over the last couple of weeks that the education sector has become increasingly divided, with the unions and the associations coming out (for the most part) as adversaries against the Teaching Council and the fees increase announcement. I totally get teachers being upset about having to pay more, but the vitriol being thrown around online is massively disappointing from a sector who wears their professional status with pride.
I think the thing that makes it most disappointing is that it simply doesn’t make sense. In order to uphold the sanctity and the status of the education sector in New Zealand we actually need both - we need the unions and we need the council and we need both to be independent and independently funded so as to ensure they function effectively. Both the unions and the council have an important part to play in ensuring that we have safe classrooms with competent teachers and teachers who are well protected, well supported and paid w…
Well, today marks the day that many of you will have experienced the first high stakes external exam of the 2018 NCEA exam season and whilst I do wish you all the best, I also want you to know that you are bigger than any NCEA exam.
An exam is defined by the Collins Dictionary as a formal test that you take to show your knowledge or ability in a particular subject, or to obtain a qualification.
I would rather focus on what an exam is not:
It is not a measure of if you are bright.
It is not a measure of your potential.
It is not a measure of your worth, either now or in the future.
It is not a measure of your ability to learn, unlearn and relearn.
It is not a measure of your ability to communicate.
It is not a measure of your ability to collaborate.
It is not a measure of your ability to research.
It is not a measure of your creativity.
It is not a measure of your curiosity.
It is not a measure of your willingness to take risks.