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Candidate Michael Kay and Board Member Calli Valudos speak together about Attica Projects Education policy on a special 40-minute episode exclusive to thisquality.
Calli is a teacher/educator, which is an excellent aspect to the episode ensuring all questions Michael Kay had asked to her were answered and fact-checked.
To start with, Michael asks Calli what’s wrong with the system surrounding the current neoliberal education practices in New Zealand—beginning with the main pointers in today’s day and age.
“Systemically, there is a huge amount of inequality going on; there is very little inclusion or real inclusion happening in our system simply because it is almost run like a business. Like a profit share business. Students are seen as products and achievement is seen as the outcome for the education system,” said Calli.
Because the education system is run like a business, it’s treating the students like they’re more of a product than thought as a student that wants to learn correctly and not rundown by an education system that’s not showing the proper care for students.
“This has disenfranchised so many of our students and caused quite a big societal dilemma that is now coming fruition by the numbers of young people who leave school disgruntled and untrained who get into things like gangs and criminal activities. and, that is, in my opinion, is a huge inditement on what the system is doing at the moment,” said Calli.
Calli says that most of the funding going into education is taken up by ‘bureaucracy’ – teachers are poorly trained for the job.
“We see a huge inequality in the quality of education that you get if you are born into a higher socio-economic strata, as too if you are born into a lower socio-economic strata,” said Calli.
This is mainly because the education system is dividing teaching certain students that are not in the ‘normal’ range are not being catered for especially in the lower decile schools where it is disadvantaged.
Michael goes in-depth about the failure of the system comparing both perspectives, “we are told that there’s been quite a lot done, that’s been done, but in fact there has been constant promises of lifting those other deciles and closing the gaps. Both Calli and I are hard to teach people, and in fact, we are both high achieving, but we are hard to teach because we don’t fit in the mainstream.”
He explains that he was lucky to find a good teacher that ‘actually had a masters’ who was efficient and got him back on his feet, by the time he was 13, he only just learned how to read because of that teacher.
“with all of the money that’s spent on education, it’s the harder learners that as Calli says a product, it gets a lot of money spent on it even in the private sector outside of schools. There’s a lot of private-public partnerships that are supposedly giving vocational learning,” said Michael Kay.
Students are separated whether they have a disability or not, even in primary schools as students get older they get ‘pigeon hopped’ better described as moved without feeling the need to adequately teach each student, but rather treat them as a product.
“Teachers actually aren’t trained to identify any issues early on, nor are they trained to deal with those issues,” said Calli.
Directing the bureaucratic funding towards a ‘chalkface’ would make a huge difference for a lot of students. Attica Project will be looking at enforcing proper teacher training as part of the policy, ensuring every student gets the right teaching so they can succeed for the future to come.
“At the moment New Zealand really sits as five products, pines, dairy, meat proteins and we’ve lost wool. It’s just gone out the back door; we’ve got apples peaches and pears. A couple of things that are, mainly kiwifruit. We’ve gone from being a very diverse country and exporting lots of different produce, and that really has just slowly stopped,” said Michael Kay.
The innocent diversity of New Zealand’s exporting has turned to rubble. The private sector of universities is selling all of the means of production in venture capitalist companies that have formed inside the universities around patents that are mainly for gene drive technology, thanks to the Labour-led Government this election term.
Getting rid of the ban GMO laws which are a disaster, ruining trade opportunities for the DSIR (Department of Scientific and Industrial Research) in New Zealand.