30 May 2012
It took a little time but now we seem to know what is happening.
- School teacher / student ratios are to change.
- The intermediate school additional staffing allowance is to continue.
- No single school will lose more than 2 teachers.
What a shame we didn’t get it all on the table at the beginning, then the explanations of the changes and the responses to it might have made sense to the public.
Based in 1 July 2010 returns it looks like this:
- Years 1- 6 will lose 471 FTEs
- Years 7-8 will gain 241 FTEs
- Intermediate Schools will within the limits of the 2 FTE maximum loss when applied to the school will retain their specialist position additional staffing allowance. They enjoy the benefits of the increased Year 7-8 ratio which allpies to them as well as to full primary schools.
- Years 9-10 will lose 748 FTEs
- Years 11-15 will gain 1,027 FTEs
The real concern has to be the impact on Years 2-6 where in contributing primary schools where the more generous ratio at years 7 and 8 will not be available to even out the impact across the year levels. Secondary has gained.
There has been some very creative use of “class size” during this discussion and little emphasis on the goal of improved teacher quality. From what I can see the changes, and certainly with the compromise position which has probably pre-empted the work of any Working Group, there will be few resources released by the changes for teacher professional development. It is important to not lose sight of the reasons what all this fuss and pain was intended to achieve.