Yay the message gets through

September 19th, 2010 at 10:00 am by David Farrar

I’ve twice blogged on how the OECD teacher pay stats actually show teachers are paid more generously in NZ, than most other countries, when you take GDP/capita into account. Our problem is the overall wealth of the country – not what proportion we spend on education.

Both and the editorial pick up on this point.

Kerre writes:

Teachers claim they are poorly paid in comparison to other countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). David Farrar of Kiwiblog makes the point that we’re all poorly paid in comparison to other countries. It’s because we don’t earn as much as everyone else. It’s all about gross domestic product (GDP).

When you do the sums, as Farrar did, New Zealand teachers get paid more than almost every other country in the OECD compared to GDP per capita. They certainly get paid far more than the median wage – as well they should.

And you know what – if the unions would agree to performance pay, I’d be the first person to be advocating big pay rises for the good teachers – the top ones should be on $100,000.

The HoS editorial:

The problem is that the Government is not short of priority issues right now: recovering from the biggest economic meltdown in living memory and funding recovery from an earthquake that has upended life for about half the people in the South Island are two that spring to mind.

This is not to say that the teachers’ claims are without merit. And plainly the Ministry of Education recognises that, since many of them have been conceded, in whole or in part.

Others, including an increase in the employer contribution to members’ Kiwisaver funds and a 4 per cent wage claim while other wage settlements (and the inflation rate) are running at less than 2 per cent, look remarkably like the demands of a sector out of touch with reality.

Remember that the Government is running a huge fiscal deficit. Every dollar more of government spending has to be borrowed, and will be a burden on today’s kids who will have to pay it back.

The plain fact is that the average secondary teacher salary is now more than $71,000 or $1365 a week. It has risen since 2000 by more than 45 per cent – almost twice as fast as wages in the public sector as a whole (24 per cent) and the private sector (25.3 per cent).

It is provocative but misleading for teachers to compare pay rates with colleagues internationally: salaries have to be reckoned against GDP per capita for international comparisons to be meaningful – that’s why our teachers earn 82 per cent less than their Luxembourg counterparts. And our spending on non-tertiary education is the same as or higher than the OECD average in terms of GDP.

And the solution, as I have said before, is to increase our national wealth. And the way you do that is not big pay increases for doing the same job. It is by improving our productivity.

To put it bluntly, teachers need to stop disrupting the lives of students so close to end-of-year exams, prioritise their demands and get back to the bargaining table. They got 4 per cent last year and 4 per cent the year before. Parents and everyone else may take the view that teachers aren’t doing too badly.

Who else has had a 45% increase in their salary since 2000? And I don’t mean through promotions – I mean for doing the same job?

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49 Responses to “Yay the message gets through”

  1. Michael (910 comments) says:

    I was a third former the first time secondary school teachers went on strike. It seemed then to be more about militancy than actual desire for better pay and conditions as the Labour Government was in the middle of forming policy on ‘Tomorrows Schools’. No surprise that teachers are striking when National intoduces standards.

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  2. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    While the intent is admirable- sure performance based pay for teachers or any profession is what we should aim for, its deck chairs on the Titanic. The NZEI runs education in NZ, as as they destroy everything they gain control of, so have the left destroyed public education. It is so bad it is hard to know where to start, but I guess performance based pay is as good a place as any. Removing schools from a centralised control (in Wellington) would be another helpful step.

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  3. bchapman (649 comments) says:

    Junior Doctors, Radiographers, Clinaical Pathologists and now Secondary Teachers- the list of the disgruntled is increasing. Will the police and nurses be next?

    Good point about productivity- which professionals do we need to support to improve our productivity though?

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  4. somewhatthoughtful (466 comments) says:

    But those non-stimulating, debt-causing tax cuts aren’t a burden on youth, DPF? pfft

    [DPF: The tax cuts were fiscally neutral. The 2009 tax cuts were matched by spending cuts far greater than the tax cuts. And the 2010 tax package is fiscally neutral]

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  5. gazzmaniac (2,307 comments) says:

    Strikes are great when you’re a student – day off to do what you want!
    BTW I got a significant pay rise by crossing the ditch (doubled and AUD). The mining industry has had well over 45% increase in Australia – but it’s also a hell of a lot more productive.

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  6. tvb (4,432 comments) says:

    There is case to cut teachers pay at least for those who are merely drones. It is not a profession that I have much time for, full of losers pedophiles druggies and drunks.

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  7. dime (9,980 comments) says:

    somewhatthoughtful – youre right. its a pain that our borrowing is out of control. as we cut taxes we have to borrow even more to pay for our bloated public service.

    for the good of the next generation we hsould be slashing and buring govt spending.

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  8. Psycho Milt (2,412 comments) says:

    Perhaps you could stop misrepresenting the reason for the strike DPF, and see if that message gets through to the Herald as well? The PPTA’s made it quite clear that they have prioritised their demands and they are quite willing to go back to negotiation, but teachers are not willing to accept a pay offer that comes with clawbacks of previously-won working conditions. There’s nothing to prevent Tolley at any time from directing the Min of Ed to remove clawbacks from the negotiations, at which point the strikes would be over and negotiations could start again. Your call, Tolley – the kids are having their education disrupted only because you’re trying to claw back teachers’ working conditions, so it’s all up to you.

    [DPF: Be specific - can you specify these claimed clawbacks and also post a reference to the PPTA saying they would negotiate if those clawbacks were removed]

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  9. Danyl Mclauchlan (1,070 comments) says:

    Who else has had a 45% increase in their salary since 2000? And I don’t mean through promotions – I mean for doing the same job?

    New Zealand’s CEOs got an average pay rise of 13% just last year . . .

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  10. tvb (4,432 comments) says:

    Teachers in the main are not CEO material. They are in the main over paid losers. That is why they are so heavily unionised.

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  11. calendar girl (1,244 comments) says:

    “… but teachers are not willing to accept a pay offer that comes with clawbacks of previously-won working conditions …”

    So, Milt, a demand for free laptops for everyone is somehow a “clawback”?

    As a matter of interest, does the laptop demand include free Internet connections?

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  12. Viking2 (11,491 comments) says:

    Shit, no wonder all the local carpenters are applying for school jobs. More money and easier than building.

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  13. Poliwatch (335 comments) says:

    “Every dollar more of government spending has to be borrowed, and will be a burden on today’s kids who will have to pay it back.”

    Excellent point. Another tax on future generations. A good economics teacher will realise that this will continue to push us down the OECD ladder. And that their salary is real terms will continue to go down against teachers in other OECD countries as will everybody else’s incomes. In reality teachers are just creating another student loan although this will cover everyone – expect our best and brightest to continue pouring overseas.

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  14. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    New Zealand’s CEOs got an average pay rise of 13% just last year . . .

    1. CEO’s are paid what they are because they are managing multi-million dollar entities, by its nature an incredibly stressful and high pressure role… teachers have to deal with 15-20 snot nosed kids at the most

    2. Most CEO’s salary package includes some kind of incentive for performance… e.g bonuses, share packages which will increase in value should the company perform well. Teachers have steadfastly refused any kind of performance related pay, which most people accept would lift the top pay scale for the best teachers.

    3. CEO’s are paid on what private shareholder’s agree to. They are the ones putting up the capital, not you, not the general public. For this reason, and the above 2, your comparison of CEO’s to teachers is completely retarded. Of course you know this, but are just making a lame and feeble attempt to troll.

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  15. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    Well said Nick, and your last sentence is spot on.

    Mind you, there could be some stress involved in the so called teaching occupation. Some teachers may have a conscience and feel bad about filling our children’s heads with Marxist and Racist propaganda rather than educating them.

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  16. Paulus (2,633 comments) says:

    If a CEO does not perform to his owner’s wishes he is on his bike for sure, the real world can be very cruel and nasty for non performers.

    Perform or out – not whinge like teachers union – pathetic people.

    Like the other strikers it is really only because we have a National progressive government not liver lilly labour panderers.

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  17. Psycho Milt (2,412 comments) says:

    [DPF: Be specific - can you specify these claimed clawbacks and also post a reference to the PPTA saying they would negotiate if those clawbacks were removed]

    Scoop and the PPTA website have plenty about the PPTA’s position, easily accessible via Google for bloggers or newspaper editorial writers who want to write about the strike as something other than cheerleaders for the govt. There’s plenty to choose from, but for the lazy, clawbacks are described here: http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1009/S00178/ppta-response-to-ministrys-accuracy-claims.htm and PPTA’s position re further negotiations here: http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/ED1007/S00096/ppta-breaks-down-negotiations.htm.

    So, Milt, a demand for free laptops for everyone is somehow a “clawback”?

    I don’t think the Min of Ed negotiators are demanding free laptops from the teachers. Maybe you should look up what union negotiators mean by “clawbacks.”

    CEO’s are paid what they are because they are managing multi-million dollar entities, by its nature an incredibly stressful and high pressure role…

    Yes, it’s impossible to imagine companies being able to attract applicants for a CEO position with a mere multi-million-dollar salary. It’s vital that the salary doubles every few years as well, otherwise how will companies continue to attract men of the calibre that gave us the global financial crisis of 2008?

    [DPF: Nowhere there do I see the PPTA saying they will stop the strike and negotiate if just what they call proposed clawbacks are removed. Did you make this up?]

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  18. pollywog (1,153 comments) says:

    [DPF: the 2010 tax package is fiscally neutral]

    oh right so if we believe the rhetoric ‘no one should be worse off’. Only thing is you don’t know that until after the GST price gouge settles…

    …what you do know though, is that a lot of fatcats will be wayy better off because of these taxcuts which we can’t afford.

    So you got any poll results to say people would rather have no GST rise than a taxcut that benefits mostly the already well off ? or how about poll results to say people would have never voted Key if we’d known he would break his promise to not raise GST ?

    [DPF: You do not seem to understand what fiscal neutrality means. It does not mean no one should be worse off. In fact people such as professional property investors are worse off. Fiscal neutrality means the overall level of revenue to the Crown remains the same]

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  19. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    Yes, it’s impossible to imagine companies being able to attract applicants for a CEO position with a mere multi-million-dollar salary. It’s vital that the salary doubles every few years as well, otherwise how will companies continue to attract men of the calibre that gave us the global financial crisis of 2008?

    With logic like that you are beyond help.

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  20. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “It’s vital that the salary doubles every few years as well, otherwise how will companies continue to attract men of the calibre that gave us the global financial crisis of 2008?”

    Barney Frank and Bill Clinton (authors of the Community Reinvestment Act of 1993 that regulated that banks should make bad loans) are not men I would describe as of any calibre other than the lowest.

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  21. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    Good post redbaiter, but with braindead drongoes like milt, sillyoldhori etc, you are wasting your breath.

    The cause of the economic crisis, unemployment, and rampant public debt is the fault of the Tea Party in their fantasy minds.

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  22. transmogrifier (522 comments) says:

    Performance will not work in a public education system:

    Private companies are able to link performance pay to results that enable the company to increase their revenue and thus enable them to pay for performance in the first place. Schools do not have this at all; a teacher who does a brilliant job does not naturally increase the revenue that the school receives. Instead, it can only be artificially attained – the government will “reward” the schools for having good teachers by signing off on higher salaries. But the education budget is essentially capped by being government funded, isn’t it? So how do we afford the increase in salaries?

    We could reduce the salary of poor performing teachers. Okay, fair enough. But in a private system, it is often the customers who pay for the quality of the service they get. You’ll pay more for a high profile lawyer than you will for someone right out of law school, and you are free to choose who you want according to your budget. This choice doesn’t happen in public education; all parents essentially pay a similar rate, but have no say over what teacher their children get. So you could be lucky and have your kids educated by top notch teachers, while your neighbour’s kids gets the dregs, but you are paying the same for the privilege. That’s inherently not fair.

    And if performance pay is indeed motivated by the desire to improve the quality of teachers, then there can’t be a cap on the number of teachers on the top rate, can there? If not, can we afford it? If so, how do you work it out? Will each school get a certain chunk of money to pay out to a certain number of top teachers (let’s say 10 teacher per 1000 students, or something)? How can a school attract other good teachers if it has already filled its ten slots? Should they re-rank the teachers each year in order to decide who gets the higher salary?

    Or perhaps there is a certain percentage of teaching positions that can receive the top payment over the whole of New Zealand, and so top performing schools can have access to more funds for more top teachers, while poorly performing schools will lose some of the funding. If so, how do we then attract good teachers to lowly rated schools in order to improve their performance if those schools have less money for salaries?

    And how are these teachers judged in terms of performance? You could look at results, of course, but the danger in this is that, as we move towards more and more internal assessments, is that they become easier and easier, or the teachers start feeding answers, in order to ensure they don’t slip down the salary scale.

    Could be results in the external exams, though then teachers who get streamed classes of higher ability students have the advantage over others. Could be in improvement over the year – have a test at the start and one at the end and see how much value the teachers have added. Then those teachers that take on low ability classes have more room in which to improve, and thus have the advantage.

    You could ask for student evaluations. While a significant amount of students are honest and very well attuned to makes a good teacher, there is also a good amount of students who favour teachers that let them do what they want.

    You could have people come in and observe classes. Though, of course, these observers will have to be good teachers themselves in order to be good judges of what we are looking for, which would mean less time for them actually in the classroom teaching. And they’d have to observe more than once to know, right?

    All of these problems would vanish of course, in a private education system. But we don’t have that.

    (PS For the record, yet again, I am not part of the union. If it were me, instead of performance pay, I would have a system where teachers have a lower salary during their first two years and a tougher set of conditions to pass to get registered and a significant wage increase. If a new teacher doesn’t meet these requirements, they stay unregistered and on a lower salary until they can. After that, I’m not sure how to work it yet. The best option could well be to give a school a certain lump sum of money for registered teachers at an average salary that the government can afford and then allow individual schools to distribute it as they see fit – either evenly, or attached to bonuses for certain achievements, or whatever. This could possibly work, but it is a long way from the idealised version of performance pay that DF splutters on about all the time)

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  23. Psycho Milt (2,412 comments) says:

    The cause of the economic crisis, unemployment, and rampant public debt is the fault of the Tea Party in their fantasy minds.

    If only we had the firm grip on reality displayed by people who imagine Barney Frank and Bill Clinton were responsible…

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  24. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    Essential reading for those who blame the free market for the meltdown:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/05/business/05fannie.html?_r=1

    But by the time Mr. Mudd became Fannie’s chief executive in 2004, his company was under siege. Competitors were snatching lucrative parts of its business. Congress was demanding that Mr. Mudd help steer more loans to low-income borrowers.

    With that self-assurance, the company announced in 2000 that it would buy $2 trillion in loans from low-income, minority and risky borrowers by 2010.

    All this helped supercharge Fannie’s stock price and rewarded top executives with tens of millions of dollars. Mr. Raines received about $90 million between 1998 and 2004, while Mr. Howard was paid about $30.8 million, according to regulators. Mr. Mudd collected more than $10 million in his first four years at Fannie.

    Between 2001 and 2004, the overall subprime mortgage market — loans to the riskiest borrowers — grew from $160 billion to $540 billion, according to Inside Mortgage Finance, a trade publication. Communities were inundated with billboards and fliers from subprime companies offering to help almost anyone buy a home.

    Democratic lawmakers demanded that the company buy more loans that had been made to low-income and minority homebuyers.

    Between 2005 and 2007, the company’s acquisitions of mortgages with down payments of less than 10 percent almost tripled. As the market for risky loans soared to $1 trillion, Fannie expanded in white-hot real estate areas like California and Florida.

    Don’t big governments do commerce well!

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  25. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    This is all going a bit off topic anyway, sorry DPF. Will take it to GD

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  26. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Our problem is the overall wealth of the country – not what proportion we spend on education.

    Absolutely, as it is with so many things. And smiling Mr Key’s grand and visionary solution to this fundamental issues is… a cycleway? Giving shellfish to Maori? Putting more people in prison? Sorry, I forget…

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  27. LaoHu (6 comments) says:

    From today’s SST – someone things teachers are doing OK.
    Or is it that they are just ‘good payers’ – which I am sure many people are.

    “Fat mortgage margins at the banks have seen a return of mass “packaging” of discounts for borrowers in a handful of select, high income-earning professions.

    The big banks are competing in a low-profile discounting war to win the loan business of prized customer groups such as doctors and other medical professionals, solicitors and police. Teachers are also being offered special deals.

    These select groups are routinely being offered largely unadvertised 0.25% to 0.5% discounts on their “carded” mortgage rates, said mortgage broker John Bolton, from Squirrel Mortgages in Auckland.”

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  28. Sonny Blount (1,783 comments) says:

    Our problem is the overall wealth of the country – not what proportion we spend on education.

    Absolutely, as it is with so many things. And smiling Mr Key’s grand and visionary solution to this fundamental issues is… a cycleway? Giving shellfish to Maori? Putting more people in prison? Sorry, I forget…

    It’s up to us to generate wealth Rex, John Key needs to get out of the way.

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  29. Sonny Blount (1,783 comments) says:

    Who else has had a 45% increase in their salary since 2000? And I don’t mean through promotions – I mean for doing the same job?

    New Zealand’s CEOs got an average pay rise of 13% just last year . . .

    Well, go and get a job as a CEO Danyl, and donate some of your salary to some teachers.

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  30. Sean (301 comments) says:

    Thoughtful post, transmogrifier. To take your lawyer analogy a bit further, a solution would then be to licence teachers in the same way lawyers are licenced – a degree and passing the professionals course, then admitted to the bar and finally a practising certificate. Regulated by the equivalent of the law society, which would maintain professional standards, train or oversee training and root out the miscreants by disbarring (something that is certainly needed for teachers).

    Teachers would be then be free to practice their profession in the same way as lawyers – generally by joining a firm, perhaps in the case of teachers a particular school (though there would be no reason why a firm of good teachers could not run several schools or supply subject specialists to a number of schools).

    Clients, i.e. parents, would then be free to choose the teachers or firm of teachers that provided the quality of service that their budget could afford. It would be relatively easy to see which firm was best, since exam results would (pardon the pun) testify to the effectiveness of the firm’s teachers in the same way a favourable verdict or civil settlement testifies to the effectiveness of the chosen law firm.

    Teachers could then develop their skills, as do lawyers, by working their way up a ladder of sorts to the point where they might become the equivalent of partners, thus responsible for recruiting and developing talent to maintain the profitability and viability of the firm. Indeed the best teachers could teach classes in a particular specialty at a number of different schools, much as a barrister sole or QC can take cases in her speciality area.

    A form of public teacher obligation (like a public prosecutor or defender, where a lawyer works off the debt to the state incurred in gaining the qualifications) would permit the state to fund those with talent but no means to train as teachers in the first place and also the ability to work in marginal areas to ensure a minimum of education where the otherwise private market could not sustainably work.

    This all paid for, of course, by the citizen from their own pockets, compensated by a reduction in that portion of the tax take that currently is wasted on ensuring children all perform to the lowest common denominator.

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  31. bc (1,367 comments) says:

    Guess what Sean – the way you described it is how it happens in the teaching sector now.

    Teachers get a degree or postgraduate qualification.
    Then a teaching diploma (a large component of which is based on being obeserved teaching)
    Then after they are employed at a school they get a practicising certificate after 2 years teaching, which is based on them being on a beginning teachers programme and then providing they met the beginning teachers professional standards.
    All teachers must be registered to teach and must belong to the teachers council.

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  32. BlueDevil (92 comments) says:

    If teachers had done a better job teaching our children, NZ would be richer and we could pay them more!

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  33. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    Sonny Blount points out:

    It’s up to us to generate wealth Rex, John Key needs to get out of the way.

    Very true Sonny. So I should perhaps ask, what is he doing to create an environment in which business, and particularly small business, can flourish? And, to ensure some balalnce, in which wages for those who are productive are competitive enough to retain them in NZ?

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  34. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    Yay the message gets through

    I suggest that’s overstating things a tad. Some of the MSM are talking sense, while the rest are out of touch.. yet the NZEI et al don’t care and push ahead with the kind of militancy that they’ve been so longing or. The day there are widespread demands for pay-for-performance will be the day the message is getting through.

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  35. bc (1,367 comments) says:

    There’s lies, damned dies and statistics and Tolley has certainly being using statistics to tell lies.

    What a shame the Herald has quoted them as if there were true without even bothering to do some basic research.
    So we have a politician and a right-wing blogger who of course are going to “spin” (a polite word for lie) and do some creative accounting with figues to try to back up their “spin” and the Herald just runs with it as if it was fact. Pathetic.

    Tolley annouces on Q+A that the “average teacher” gets $71000, and when she got a reaction of disbelief she changed that to “about $70000″ (the first of many times she blurted out an outrageous statement and then backtracked when she realised Espinor didn’t believe her). She even defined the “average teacher” amount refers to a teacher in the middle of their career.
    Well a quick look at the teachers collective agreement shows that a teacher at the top of the scale gets $68980. So her figues just don’t add up. I’m guessing shes included principals (who don’t teach any classes). deputy principals (who may teach one class), and other senior managers (teaching 2 or 3 classes) in her stats. Hardly the “average teacher” Tolley.
    Take them out of the mix or keep them there and give the MEDIAN amount (and the median is the true average anyway) and I bet the amount changes. I wonder what the “average” politician gets if we include the PM, Deputy etc.

    And the 45% payrise since 2000 is a load of rubbish too.
    Even if it was true, isn’t it an amazing coincidence that a year is picked just before there a pay increase (after years of teachers losing money in real terms in the 1990’s). The 45% implies of course that people will do divide by 10 and get an average increase of 4.5% every year. Now if 1990 was chosen and a division of 20 was done, I expect the figure would be very different. Again I wonder what the average increase of politicians salaries are from 2000? Or any other year.

    Lies, lies and more lies!

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  36. bc (1,367 comments) says:

    You make it sound like teachers want to doing industrial action krazykiwi.
    I put it to you that teachers do industrial action very reluctantly. Why would you want to subject yourself to the type of mad rantings from the likes of tvb (quote: full of losers pedophiles druggies and drunks), redbaiter (quote: filling our children’s heads with Marxist and Racist propaganda rather than educating them) and others?
    Now you, I and hope 99.99% of everyone else know that they are just nutters (and given that people tend to ignore them I suspect that’s the case) but even so why would you want to stick your head out to get that kind of abuse?
    No krazy, teachers do not want to go out of strike. But what’s the alternative? Just take it and see the education system – which is highly regarded internationally, despite what the nutters here say – go down the gurgler?

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  37. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    But what’s the alternative?

    @bc – the alternative is for teachers to think for themselves.. and stop being dictated to by a Victorian-era union – one that has no place in a modern education landscape. The alternative is for teachers to DEMAND pay for performance and then step up and help establish the way that mechanism can be designed and implemented.

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  38. bc (1,367 comments) says:

    DPF: Nowhere there do I see the PPTA saying they will stop the strike and negotiate if just what they call proposed clawbacks are removed.

    The clawbacks are the issue – it is the media focussing on pay. It is the clawbacks that are the most damaging to the education of children.
    The government negotiators want to cut guaranteed lesson preparation time, want to cut teacher professional development, want to cut the cut the “endevour” that schools look at class sizes (although class sizes are already higher than what they should be) and what to spilt management payments in a rather desperate attempt to make it look like they are creating more positions. It is these (and more!) that have major consequences for the type of quality education our children get.
    To the parents out there:
    Do you want over-burdened and over-stress teachers delivering inferior lessons because they have no time?
    Do you want teachers denied the opportunity to upskill and keep up-to date with the latest teaching methods?
    Do you want your kids in classes of 35? 40? or more (they are already over 30)

    Because if the teachers just roll over and take the governments “offer” that’s exactly what will happen.

    The teachers have given the PPTA a mandate to undertake a programme of industrial action until the clawbacks get addressed. It is this – not the pay – that is the issue. If the clawbacks are removed then absolutely the PPTA will negotiate.

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  39. bc (1,367 comments) says:

    krazy, the teachers are perfectly capable thinkingof themselves. How insulting for you to suggest otherwise.
    The teachers union has 95% membership. This would not be happening if it was the unions directing teachers, rather than the other way around.
    And given that you have knowledge of the system (although second-hand from what you have been saying in other posts) you will know full well that teachers have performance standards.

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  40. bc (1,367 comments) says:

    Now let’s address this performance pay issue:

    Starting with the “bad” teaches (however that is defined). I would argue that the “bad” teachers would make up a very small percentage, < 1%. But, he, let's go crazy (krazy?) and say 10%. Now these "bad" teachers don't deserve a pay increase and the ones that are really bad (again, however we define really bad) should have a pay cut.
    So a bit of money to give to the "good" teachers then.
    Now we want the good teachers to stay – remember folks there is a teacher shortgage so we want the good teachers to stay, even the marginally good because let me tell you, there isn't anybody else there willing to step and do this job, even with all those wonderful holidays!!
    So let's give them (however we define them) the pathetic 1.5% this year and 1% the following year Tolley is offering. Wow a diminishing pay rise (talk about bulk funding all over again). Now these teachers are have been classified "good" so let's hope they are satisfied with that pathetic offer because that's it!!
    Okay, so now yo the "great' teachers (however we define them but they would have to be at least 10%). The only extra money we have for them is what we have taken away from the "bad" teachers. But even DPF wants to give them $100000!! So where's the money coming from?

    And what's the bet that Tolley would use performance pay as a way to CUT teachers salaries overall.

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  41. calendar girl (1,244 comments) says:

    “I don’t think the Min of Ed negotiators are demanding free laptops from the teachers. Maybe you should look up what union negotiators mean by “clawbacks.”

    Very droll, Milt.

    What the union negotiators mean is as elusive as your own dogged defence of the PPTA’s lack of professionalism in the present environment.

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  42. Psycho Milt (2,412 comments) says:

    [DPF: Nowhere there do I see the PPTA saying they will stop the strike and negotiate if just what they call proposed clawbacks are removed. Did you make this up?]

    Charming. Let’s review what I actually said:

    …they are quite willing to go back to negotiation, but teachers are not willing to accept a pay offer that comes with clawbacks of previously-won working conditions.

    Now the PPTA’s statements:

    The ministry has ignored all constructive approaches at the table and instead lodged a raft of counter-claims, Gainsford said.

    “These and many other claw backs are still on the table – hard won provisions such as class size limits are under attack.

    And:

    The MOE’s original clawbacks have yet to be formally removed from the negotiation table.

    And:

    The Ministry offer still includes claw-backs on the provisions around the call-back days.

    Funny, the clawbacks are mentioned time and time again but the pay offer isn’t.

    Finally:

    PPTA members have asked for a settlement with three parts to it: health and safety concerns and teaching and learning conditions to be addressed, all clawbacks to be removed, and a remuneration package that values the job teachers do.

    Two of those are areas for negotiation, and one is a declared bottom line. I find it difficult to credit that National supporters are so unfamiliar with negotiating agreements that they fail to grasp that.

    Younger National Party members and politicians may have little experience or knowledge of bargaining for collective agreements, but I’ve spent a fair bit of the last few decades as a member of different unions, and have learned a few things:

    1. In bad economic times, the employer can only offer a minimal pay increase that doesn’t even match inflation – that’s a given, and will probably have to be accepted, if only after much shouting and breast-beating. Striking for a big pay increase will only lose you money.

    2. In bad economic times, the employer will sometimes try and make even the minimal pay increase it’s offering conditional on accepting clawbacks of working conditions. Accept that as a starting position for negotiations and you might as well just bend over and spread ‘em. Reject it out of hand and strike to back that up if necessary – in this case, negotiation = defeat.

    3. Number 2 is really only possible for the employer in a strong buyers’ market for labour. Teachers aren’t subject to that buyers’ market, so the Min of Ed is being just plain stupid imagining teachers are going to bend over and spread ‘em. How is that possible? Surely the people running the Ministry aren’t stupid? Well, no – but who’s their Minister?

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  43. Psycho Milt (2,412 comments) says:

    What the union negotiators mean is as elusive as your own dogged defence of the PPTA’s lack of professionalism in the present environment.

    See above. What the union negotiators mean is clear enough to anyone willing to actually read their press releases, rather than just regurgitating the govt’s and DPF’s spin on it.

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  44. mattyroo (1,029 comments) says:

    Danyl Mclauchlan said:

    New Zealand’s CEOs got an average pay rise of 13% just last year . . .

    Don’t be jealous Danyl, aspire to be a leader yourself and you could one day get great pay rises too….

    Easier to sit behind your state funded desk and snipe though isn’t it.

    Not that it is any fucking business of yours what CEO’s get, unless of course you are a shareholder. Then you could be actively campaigning to the boards, instead of being a resentful little jerk who will never be anything.

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  45. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    @bc:

    The teachers union has 95% membership

    Quite so, and next you’ll be telling me that none of these people belongs to the union because they feel in any way threatened if they choose not to belong. I know that’s not the case…

    Your analysis of ‘good vs bad’ teachers is polarized, over simplistic and assumes the same pie to be divvied up. I’ve said I’d be happy for more money to be spent on teachers, just so long as there’s an increase in their performance. Can you point me to where teachers (sorry, the union on their behalf..) is offering improved performance for improved pay?

    As to my ‘second hand’ experience, you’re correct in assuming that I’m not a teacher. My wife is a very experienced teacher and I have been a BOT chair, currently serve on a trust that owns intergrated school property and serve on another trust that provides education-related funding for disadvantaged kids. I’ve also consulted to the MoE and currently have a software solution that I’m developing with a group of schools in the Wellington region. That’s me … you?

    Oh, you really should get over your hatred of Tolley. If it wasn’t her as minister, it would be someone else and this person would no doubt be the target of whatever barbs the unions and teachers could throw.

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  46. RightNow (6,994 comments) says:

    Short term pain for long term gain. Lock them out.

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  47. Mark Petersen (1,488 comments) says:

    “I’ve twice blogged on how the OECD teacher pay stats actually show teachers are paid more generously in NZ, than most other countries, when you take GDP/capita into account. Our problem is the overall wealth of the country – not what proportion we spend on education.”

    A fine argument as long as you apply the same logic to executive and CEO remuneration. If you remain consistent across the board on this issue and dont just attack civil servants in vocation type carreers such as Teachers, Nurses, police, radiographers etc than that is fine. I would hate to think you might apply a different set of rules to CEO’s.

    That said I suspect based on this logic the younger better teachers are going to bugger off to enjoy the better remuneration they will get in Australia and England.

    On performance pay I want to understand how the good performing teachers are going to be measured. Is it against National Standards or improvement in students performance over the year. How does a Board of Trustees set the criteria for teacher pay performance for a teacher in a decile 9 class v the teacher in a decile 2 class where 10% of the students may be ESOL students. Do you take into account the resources available to the teacher the support available and the Professional development funding available on a school by school basis as this is not uniform.

    Do you try to take normative data from Decile 3 schools say and compare with Decile 3 schools elswhere or do you support a simple concept where Teachers in Decile 10 schools simply get paid better because their students perform better.

    Performance pay is always a laudable idealogical position. The practicalities may well be another issue.

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  48. questlove (242 comments) says:

    I’m not sure that GDP/capita is as relevant in a global labour market.

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