Charter schools- who authorises the authorisers?

“Good” said David Farrar when the Destiny Church was denied government permission to run a charter school. OK, I said, what were the reasons? And guess what? Apparently none have been given. The Destiny Church when asked were told they could meet with board representatives. Apparently there’s some reluctance to put the reasons in writing and or make them public? Why would this be?

I’m not saying the decision is right or wrong, but I’d like to know the process. Apparently its secret. Its perhaps pertinent that the chair of the “Authorisation Board” is Catherine Issacs ex ACT party and the author of its branding as the “Liberal” party. If she’s so “liberal” why isn’t she forthcoming with the reasons for Destiny’s rejection? Something smells here.

If there is any process, shouldn’t it be a publically accountable process with specifications and guidelines, and if an application is rejected, it should be made plain where it failed in respect of those guidelines.

I looked up the other 6 members of the board and they too seem like a pretty wet lot. Who are they to be deciding who should set up a school and who shouldn’t? Shouldn’t this just be down to the market.? Just askin’.

UPDATE

Some more information received lately on the “criteria”. Very vaguely worded and providing easy outs for refusal of applications. Thereby giving the “Authorisation Board” every opportunity for subjective adjudication.

A Ministry of Education spokeswoman said every partnership school proposal was being assessed against criteria such as their existing or potential education performance, as well as their ability to attract quality teachers and priority learners.

Other criteria included the content and rigour of their proposed curriculum, the likely level of community support, and the effectiveness of the school’s proposed management systems and governance structures.

Applicants’ financial management skills and their readiness to open in 2014 were also considered in the assessment process.

Partnership schools would be accountable to the Government for raising achievement through a contract to deliver specific outcomes. In return they would have more flexibility to make decisions about how they operated and used funding

Also, of course the catch 22 here is that Charter Schools have to receive government funding and in agreeing to this any applicant then also agrees to the terms of the fundings. This is where government has them by the short and curlies, and its a situation that makes my comment above on market forces somewhat irrelevant. I don’t know, I guess the only real objective in charter schools is to break the power of the education unions.

4 thoughts on “Charter schools- who authorises the authorisers?

  1. Great to see you posting again RB. Can’t believe the output over the last few days! Great to see.

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  2. Red, unless we can get the government out of the way and let the market decide, we will never have a democratic approach in education. So-called charter schools with government control is the same same but different. For conservatism to survive we must rip out government from education–period.

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  3. Yes Terry, you’re quite correct. Taxpayer funded schools, like many of our public services, were once a workable idea, however since the left have seized our culture and government, these “services” have been turned into institutions whose primary purpose is to support and further left wing totalitarianism.

    So short of expunging the left entirely from the political scene, the only other option to restore sanity and democracy is privatisation.

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