Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Principals - we are a weird lot

I recently filled in the APPA principals survey, they have a few issues with workload, paperwork, compliance and more. I'm happy to help with a few answers. As usual, with all surveys, I look at the questions and try to work out why each question has been asked, and then think how I can skew the answers by taking the opposite point of view from everyone else. I then try to convince myself that the view I have taken (because no one else has taken it) is actually justified and correct.
Take this question : "I look forward to MOE surveys" why ask this question and really expect any principal to answer "Strongly Agree" 0.6% (1) did strongly agree (that was me). You see this is what I call a slanted question, just bloody ridiculous, how can APPA expect to have any credibility when they use this question to say to the MOE that Principals are not happy with their performance.
There are some more doozies : "
"This school has no problems with funding from the ministry on property matters"
"I find no problem in recruiting quality teachers"
"I have the teaching staff to do justice to Te Reo"
These just state the obvious and don't need 200 principals to say help.

But there were a few that I though gee guys, your answers are at polar opposites, genuinely, from where I sit. like these:
"Payroll paperwork is overly inconsistent and complex" 2 people strongly disagreed (me and some other smart arse 1.2%). Just delegate it to a competent office manager and get on with the job of education, it might be complex but it shouldn't be of any concern for the principal, get someone else to do it.
"I have no problems with passwords on official websites like Leadspace" 5 people (3%) answered Strongly Agree. 67% had problems they Disagreed or Strongly Disagreed. This got me thinking, is this actually an issue or are 67% of principals incapable of using and reusing a password. Slanted question but a backfire if you ask me. This actually shows that there are a truck load of plonkers out there. I can say this because those password forgetters couldn't follow a blog, and a mention of RSS would probably have them thinking about some sort of typing disease.
"I would like a principals handbook developed either in hard copy or online" I bloody wouldn't, it would just gather dust, what a waste of time (90.4% want a handbook).
"An online handbook of NZ educational terms and acronyms would be useful" (67.5%) think it would be great. Well whoopdee shit, would this mean the RTLB's would now actually work with behavior kids. Who cares there are bigger fish to fry.

There were a few more rippers but I need to stop here, as I'm a crap typist, and for fear of being alienated by men in walk-shorts and power dressing, over perfumed women.
OK as I am actually a principal I now need to apologize to all my mates and now enemies that I have offended. Hopefully this is taken in the manner intended, lighthearted and with hopefully some message you may take from it.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

what is perfect for gen Y

Susan Boyle has amazed the world.
Why cant ugly people be successful, singers, and entertainers. Seems we want to look at beautiful people, our eyes are ahead of our ears in terms of perception.
This seems to ring true in terms of our children and generation Y. You Tube is the biggest internet site for gen Y. Flat screen TV's, gaming consoles, My Sky, and more.
Seems kids of today are in fact overwhelmed with certain sensory skills.

Should we use this technology to hook our learners, our interactive whiteboard argument seems to be entering here. Lets give them the gaming and television all in one classroom learning tool..... make sence? So do our classrooms need to cotton on to this.

I think we should be taking the opposite stance and ensuring that we address areas of sensory learning that children are now missing in their childhood. I reckon (without any research or data) that more kids are growing up with television, computers, gaming than with books and outside play. (am I right, genius eh)
Its a bit like the "girls dont do well in science" arguement, you can either do more social studies or attack science full on.

so where is this whole blog going here..... reading and writing, listening and speaking, seems to be where the lack of development is most evident in young kids.
ka hikitia research says Maori students need to make their best progress in literacy/numeracy in the first 4 years of school or miss the boat.

So lets be experts and stick to our knitting, all with a smile, chuckle or laugh.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Jellyfish vs the Blue Suits

Here is the article we were all waiting for.

Those cheating lying bstds- who the hell do they think they are - now we will see if our schools have the guts to stand up. I wonder if the NZEI has one tiny touch of spine in them, or will the jelly fish wobble back to their pathetic labour spiral of hugs for the whanau.

Im actually loving this scenario building, I wish the TAB were running a book on the outcome. You have got to laugh at the National parties complete and utter incompetence, it's worth buying tickets to this show.

"The standards will not require each pupil to take the same test but will see existing assessments translated into a result that can be measured nationally. Data on each school's overall pupil performance would go to the ministry."

Here is the easy way to get around this one. ESOL kids don't sit the tests and other children will be harmed by the testing so they will not have the stress of testing subjected on them. this is what every secondary school in NZ currently does by selecting who sits the tests and who doesnt. This will have an immediate impact on your "results".

You know what - maybe anne tolley never mentioned league tables, maybe Nationals views haven't changed at all, we have lots of testing tools available- use the ones that suit you, send your charter and results of you goals to the MOE and allow parents access to your chosen testing. maybe thats nationals view.
Maybe that spineless lot (NZEI) are on the attack.
Maybe NZEI mentioned league tables and played that card cause they cant play a bulk funding card any longer.
Maybe the high tide has wobbled in and the jellyfish are in the waves.
Maybe I will never ever get an NZEI travelling fellowship.
Maybe the nats arent cheating lying bstds.

get your tickets - its gonna be a great game!