windy road

Breaking from the beaten path

There was a dirt road north of our old farm in Manitoba. Grass grew on the hump between the wheel tracks. Ruts the width of a truck’s axles would get worn into the road. That was all well enough if you were driving the truck, but not so great if you needed to take a car down the track. The axles didn’t fit the tired old ruts.This week’s debate around the Initiative’s report on building successful schools reminded me of... Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
24 February, 2017
apple on book1

A goal we can all agree on

There is not much in this world that people agree on. But one philosophy we at the Initiative hope remains uncontroversial is that improving access to quality education will create a better New Zealand.The main obstacle? New Zealand is in denial about the pervasiveness of school failure. Failure has become the status quo in some schools, and our ignorance to this is in turn failing New Zealand’s students. Read more

Amy Thomasson
Insights Newsletter
24 February, 2017
economy newspaper1

If only we listened to the experts

Economist and commentator Shamubeel Eaqub recently wrote an impassioned column, urging experts to bridge the communication gap lest the disaster of majoritarian rule ensue.Undercutting his piece was the message that if experts just used smaller words, or spoke slower, disasters like the Global Financial Crisis and Brexit could have been avoided.With all due respect to Mr Eaqub, who I know on a first name basis, a great dollop of humility might be a better tonic. Read more

Jason Krupp
Insights Newsletter
24 February, 2017
apple on book1

Media Release: Bold ideas needed for managing school underperformance

 In the US and the UK there is more experimentation to help under-performing schools than is permitted in New Zealand, says a report from The New Zealand Initiative. “We need political courage to innovate and find fresh solutions to improve student outcomes. New Zealand students languish in poorly performing schools for too long,” says the New Zealand Initiative.The Initiative’s latest report, Fair and Frank: Global insights for managing school performance, examines how school systems in the UK and US address and manage... Read more

Media Release
20 February, 2017
school books

Martine Udahemuka discusses Fair and Frank

Following the launch of our latest education report, Fair and Frank: Global insights for managing school performance, report author Martine Udahemuka discusses her findings with Mike Hosking on Newstalk ZB. Read more

Newstalk ZB
20 February, 2017
Martine AM Show

New education report: Fair and Frank

Our second in a series of reports on school under-performance was released on 20 February 2017. Report author Martine Udahemuka spoke to The AM Show about her findings.The report documents the strategies implemented in five jurisdictions across the US and UK to identify effective schools, effective teaching, and reform failing schools - as well as exploring the successes, failures and implications of those strategies.The final report in the series will be released later in 2017 and will inform practical policy recommendations. Read more

Martine Udahemuka
The AM Show
20 February, 2017
Vote

Democracy with fewer elections

As a German living in New Zealand, I have the rare privilege of following not one but two election campaigns this year. Both of them are fought under the obscure MMP electoral system, and both of them are culminating on the same weekend.New Zealand will go to the polls on Saturday 23 September, Germany a day later. And I am still wondering how to survive the next half a year in perma-election mode.Democracy would be great were it not for... Read more

Dr Oliver Hartwich
Insights Newsletter
17 February, 2017
algebra1

Learning from failure

Last week The Herald premiered Under the Bridge, a three-part documentary about life in Papakura High School: a low decile school plagued with a reputation for persistent poor performance.Despite increasing government support, the school’s achievement statistics remained among the lowest in the country and its student roll continued to decline as students and teachers lost hope.The Herald followed the journey of the new principal brought in to fix the school in 2016.Papakura’s story is not unique. The Initiative’s 2015 analysis of school performance reviews found that... Read more

Martine Udahemuka
Insights Newsletter
17 February, 2017

Stay in the loop: Subscribe to updates