NZEI Te Riu Roa has joined 100 other international organisations in opposing the business practice of the global education giant Pearson, which it says is damaging children’s education around the world.
National secretary Paul Goulter is in London attending the Pearson AGM where many shareholders will be using their voting rights to request that Pearson reviews its business strategy. “It is clear that Pearson has the wrong business model. Not only is it harming children’s education, it is also fundamentally flawed and that’s why the company’s shares have taken a nosedive recently.”
He says Pearson has evolved from being a respected provider of educational resources into a multi-national corporation that bases its business model around influencing government policies in order to profit from the production, supply and evaluation of high stakes testing as well as privatising schooling in developing countries. “This has not been working for Pearson and it’s certainly not working for children’s education. It is wrong to use children in the developing world as guinea pigs in an experiment replacing teachers with technology used by classroom technicians. “Pearson needs to get back to what it does best. It needs to work in collaboration with educators to provide quality resources that will assist teachers in the classroom instead of trying to corporatise education for profit.”
Investors around the world are being asked to support the resolution.
NZEI has asked the Guardians of the NZ Superannuation Fund to use their influence as Pearson shareholders to support the resolution at Pearson’s AGM that it “conducts a thorough business strategy review… including education commercialisation and its support of high stakes testing and low-fee private schools and to report to shareholders within six months”.
New Zealanders are being asked to sign up to the global campaign to tell Pearson that all children deserve a quality public education.