Charter schools - a failed, expensive experiment on kiwi kids
8 February, 2018
NZEI Te Riu Roa has welcomed the Education Amendment Bill released today which will bring charter schools back into the
state school system.
“Charter schools were ACT and National's failed experiment - integrating them back into the state school system is good
for kids and teachers because kids in mainstream state schools do better,” says NZEI National Secretary Paul Goulter.
Mr Goulter says that there was never a solid evidence-based case for what the charter school model would add to the NZ
“This was just privatisation by way of contract. They did not produce outcomes that were better than the system-wide
results, they costed more, and were a distraction that stopped us focussing on real challenges.”
He said wider societal forces outside school, including inequality and poverty, mean that teachers need to keep building
a system that is even more responsive to all students, if they are to achieve their full potential.
Sixty percent of children in charter schools are Māori.
NZEI Te Riu Roa Matua Takawaenga Laures Park says that charter schools did not serve tamariki well and she looked
forward to them coming back into the fold.
“We also want to hear more from the Minister about support and resourcing for bilingual/immersion education so that all
learners have their identity, culture and language valued and supported at school.”
She says there is no credible evidence charter schools are better for Māori than kura kaupapa or mainstream public
The Bill will get its first reading in Parliament next week.
NZEI Te Riu Roa
New Zealand Educational Institute
NZEI Te Riu Roa members work in every community in New Zealand, leading and advocating for quality public education.
We are the 50,000 principals, teachers and support staff who work in primary, area and secondary schools as well as
early childhood centres, special education and school advisory services. We come together as NZEI Te Riu Roa - New
Zealand's largest education union, a Treaty based organisation and a powerful advocate for quality public education.
We have the most important job in New Zealand - educating for the future.