The first phase of the Government’s Investing in Educational Success scheme is failing to target the children and schools the government itself says are most in need of support, a new analysis shows.
High decile schools such as Auckland Grammar are pocketing the majority of funding, while decile 1 and 2 schools are getting just six per cent, even though they make up 14 per cent of the schools in the scheme.
NZEI’s data analysis of the first 11 communities of schools (CoS) approved by Education Minister Hekia Parata late last year, shows that the allocation of resources will overwhelmingly favour the groups of large, high-decile schools.
The Auckland Central and Mid Bays (North Shore) communities consist almost entirely of decile 8-10 schools and between them will have 46 per cent of the in-school lead teachers and 44 per cent of the teacher inquiry time in the current allocation.
Those two communities will also have 21 of the 43 expert teachers who are tasked with spreading their expertise across the schools in their CoS. In comparison, Napier’s CoS of seven decile 1 and 2 schools will have just two expert teachers.
NZEI Te Riu Roa president Louise Green said primary teachers and principals overwhelming voted “no confidence” in IES last year because the $359 million for the scheme was not going to directly benefit children. Most of the money will go towards pay bonuses for lead principals and teachers.
“IES was supposedly about raising educational achievement across the board, but this data shows even more clearly that the kids who really need help are not going to get it.
“Lower decile schools are even less interested in IES than other schools because it doesn’t meet their students’ needs, so they aren’t bothering to sign up.
“Children need smaller classes for more one-on-one attention, more teacher aides for special needs, 100 per cent qualified early childhood teachers and better resourcing of bi-lingual education for Maori and Pasifika,” Ms Green said.
“Highly paid ‘expert’ teachers moving between schools overseen by a highly paid lead principal are not going to deliver the results the Minister wants, because IES is not what the vast majority of schools and students want or need.”