D is for “delight” as “dosh” is “diverted” from schools with the most “dropouts”

Alf anticipates great weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth, in response to news that secondary schools in poor areas are likely to lose the most public money under changes to the way they are funded.

The first squawks are likely to come from the stroppy teacher unions, which can be counted on to take time out from flailing at national standards to denounce the funding changes.

But Alf personally sees great merit in what will happen, according to his understanding of the Dom-Post report, which is based on Budget documents.

Here’s what’s doing:

The Government has changed the way schools receive operational funding. From next year it will be based on the actual number of pupils schools have in each quarter, rather than on an annual estimated maximum amount. The move is expected to save the Government about $500 million a year.

Cabinet papers by Education Minister Anne Tolley said the change would have the greatest effect on low-decile schools, which tended to have higher rates of pupils dropping out.

They would also lose more funding per pupil because they got significantly more per head than schools in more affluent areas.

This makes great sense to Alf.

Pouring more money per brat into schools with the greatest dropout numbers is like a pig farmer pouring more swill into the runts of a litter to keep the scrawny buggers alive, rather than into the plump porkers that will bring home the bacon.


Mrs Tolley was smart enough to announce this change along with a 4 per cent increase overall to operational funding to placate educators.

According to the Dom-Post, most schools are expected to be better off in the first year once the 4 per cent increase is taken into account.

But there was no longer-term projections of how schools would fare beyond that.

Alf’s bright readers (who are all well above average in the brains department) will have observed that the above sentence is grammatically flawed. It should say there were no longer-term projections.

The way Alf remembers it, “was” happens to be the first and third person singular past indicative of “be”, or something, and …

Nah. Alf’s readers don’t need a grammar lesson.

The point is that the Dom-Post’s misuse of “was” is an example of how the education system is failing society and justifies initiatives like national standards.

But let’s get back to this funding business.

Mrs Tolley’s papers argued it would give schools an incentive to keep pupils on and to take on new pupils, including those excluded from other schools.

It would also let “popular schools” grow because they got extra funding for new pupils who started through the year and prevent “double funding” of pupils who left a school to go to other government-funded training.

The bloody unions are bound to find something wrong with these arrangements. Alf looks forward to hearing what they have to say, but is confident he will not be convinced, if only because their arguments will come up against the enormous hurdle that happens to be Alf’s deeply entrenched prejudice against teacher unions.

The buggers miserably fail to see the merits of bringing back the dunce’s cap, the strap and the cane, and maybe the ducking stool, to give miscreants a bloody good thrashing and restore discipline to the classroom.

They are unlikely to see the merits of pumping more money into popular schools (where popular teachers presumably tend to be doing the educating) at the expense of unpopular ones.

3 Responses to D is for “delight” as “dosh” is “diverted” from schools with the most “dropouts”

  1. JK says:

    Unlike runts, you can’t yet (legally) kill off those who are not so intellectually capable. They have to go somewhere and will, and do something, which they also will. NZ’s strange fascination with chucking people on the social scrap heap at the earliest opportunity is unintelligent. Yes, there there are wonderful slogans about everyone making their own choices and taking responsiblity for themselves, but those who are “well above average in the brains department” should be able to think at least one step ahead. Only a lucky and historically notable few have any comprehension of their future and responsibility at age 5 – 15years old. What responsibility do the self-proclaimed learned ministers of the crown have toward their country?

    So we lead kids into poverty and crime since they won’t follow our old traditional ideas.

    Better find some more cops, build bigger fences and never get out of our cars when out and about. And don’t forget to keep wailing on about how crime is getting worse, how social standards are dropping and how it was different in your day: Something must have changed. What could it have been?

    I’m all for old people talking crap about everything, they even have a right to delude themselves. But it’s the hate they spew that really annoys me. They expect others to wear the responsibility they cast off in order to delude themselves.

    If you leave kids to teach and raise themselves; alienating them with barked commands based on concepts they have no way of understanding; you have nothing to blame but your own narcissism for the result. If you can’t be stuffed, just admit it and walk away. It’s more honorable – now there’s an old fashioned idea for you. And you also know that teaching kids to survive in life doesn’t require more money or changing educational standrads. It requires flexibility, creativity, pragmatism and effort.

  2. Alf Grumble says:

    Nicely said, JK – but Alf sees nothing in this to justify keeping taxpayers’ money in schools from which the kids have dropped out in preference to pumping it into schools where student numbers have increased.

  3. Oswald Bastable says:

    For the most part they are over-educating them.

    Everything taught after form two is wasted on checkout operators, cleaners and farm laborers…

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