In other news, 50% of teachers are below average

datePosted on 14:13, February 2nd, 2010 by Lew

30 per cent of teachers need to lift their game – Key.

Honestly. Anyone who thinks this is a meaningful statement needs remedial numeracy work themselves.


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4 Responses to “In other news, 50% of teachers are below average”

  1. Robert Winter on February 2nd, 2010 at 15:36

    Another one for Mr Key:

    “Ninety six percent of people put the peanut butter on first when making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.”

    The trite response is how many of Mr Key’s Cabinet should lift their game? But that would be childish, of course.

    “Statistics are like lampposts: they are good to lean on, but they don’t shed much light.” Anon, I believe.


  2. Phil Sage on February 2nd, 2010 at 21:35

    Just curious Lew. Your tone suggests we should accept disparity. Does that apply to their incomes as well?

  3. Lew on February 2nd, 2010 at 21:54

    Phil, my tone indicates nothing of the sort. What it does indicate is that made-up statistics employed as weapons in a propaganda battle between the education ministry and the teachers’ unions should at the very least be not completely meaningless.


  4. SPC on February 3rd, 2010 at 23:21

    toad covered this over on frogblog. His post follows.

    Key does have some justification for his 30% figure (although not how he used it).

    The December 2009 ERO Report “Reading and Writing in Years 1 and 2” concluded:

    ERO found that about 70 percent of teachers made good use of a range of effective reading and writing teaching practices in Years 1 and 2 classes. Effective teachers were more likely to inquire into ways of improving their teaching, and work collaboratively with other staff to share good practice. These teachers had a sense of urgency about developing the child as a reader and writer. Their teaching was evidentially based, deliberate and gave children opportunities to practise new skills and knowledge during the instructional classroom programme.

    In contrast, the remaining 30 percent of teachers had little or no sense of how critical it was for children to develop confidence and independence in early reading and writing. These teachers had minimal understanding of effective reading and writing teaching, set inappropriately low expectations and did not seek opportunities to extend their own confidence in using a wider range of teaching practices. In these classrooms learning opportunities to motivate, engage or extend children were limited.

    Key misinterprets this as “30 per cent of teachers were not doing a good job of teaching reading and writing”.

    The 30% figure relates specifically to the teaching of reading and writing to Year 1 and Year 2 classes. Key, with no justification, extends that to all teachers teaching reading and writing.

    That the teachers teaching Year 1 and Year 2 reading and writing ineffectively had minimal understanding of effective reading and writing teaching indicates an inadequacy in teacher training, rather than that the teachers are lazy or incompetent.

    National Standards won’t do anything about that. Improving teacher training will. Key and Tolley have got it all arse about face.

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