A good start

May 15th, 2014 at 12:00 pm by David Farrar

Vanguard Military School have announced:

Initial NCEA results illustrate the outstanding start Vanguard Military School students have made to the 2014 school year, achieving an average 89% success in term 1 assessments, Vanguard Chief Executive Nick Hyde said today.

Mr Hyde was commenting on Term 1 NCEA assessment results that showed Vanguard students across all demographics had significantly lifted their success rates from their previous schooling. 

European and Other students were achieving 93% success, up from 58% success prior to attending Vanguard, while Pasifika students were now achieving 90% success, up from 62%, and Maori students achieving 85% success, up from 57%.

“We’re thrilled to see our students, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, already demonstrating the attitudinal and academic excellence we strive for at Vanguard”, Mr Hyde said.

The Labour/Green Opposition have vowed to close schools such as Vanguard down. We can’t allow them to do this well.

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40 Responses to “A good start”

  1. Redbaiter (10,470 comments) says:

    Good results for sure, but I despair at this trend of breaking everyone into racial groups.

    So divisive and we should stop it.

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  2. Mighty_Kites (85 comments) says:

    First term NCEA results mean virtually nothing as teachers basically give you the answers required to pass internal NCEA assessments if you fail them first time

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  3. Ryan Sproull (7,361 comments) says:

    Good results for sure, but I despair at this trend of breaking everyone into racial groups.

    So divisive and we should stop it.

    The predictability of someone’s school success (and other metrics of success) by the arbitrary circumstances of their birth is an indicator of injustice in a society.

    If Vanguard have eliminated that predictability of success in their school, it’s a great achievement and worth highlighting.

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  4. david (2,194 comments) says:

    One would think that (supposedly) intelligent and well educated people like teachers would be rabid supporters of a scheme that would slice out the bottom percentiles of their “customers”. It is a mathematic certainty that the result would be a lift in the performance average of the remainder – and they wouldn’t have to lift a finger to make it happen!

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  5. freethinker (677 comments) says:

    Maori in particular frequently define situation in an ethnic way so intial change if required shoudl come from Maori ceasing the practice.

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  6. Gordon (4 comments) says:

    Good results in meaningless tests don’t negate the fact that this is a MILITARY school. If there is anything this country doesn’t need it is the military.

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  7. Kea (13,580 comments) says:

    Pasifika students were now achieving 90% success, up from 62%, and Maori students achieving 85% success, up from 57%.

    That corresponds to around 90% who will no longer vote Labour.

    Labour want them back on the benny crying victim.

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  8. Danyl Mclauchlan (941 comments) says:

    And all it took to get those results was a $1 million dollar cash handout and an extra $15,000 per student per year in taxpayer funding.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 17 You need to be logged in to vote
  9. E. Campbell (91 comments) says:

    On the face of it, positive.

    But, what is being compared? What were they not successful at before, but they now are? What assessments were they?

    I’m just wary as I remember a school that trumpeted their NCEA success…only for it to collapse under scrutiny (Cambridge High School).

    If they want to proclaim this success, it needs to be followed up by some more information so valid conclusions can be drawn.

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  10. david (2,194 comments) says:

    Danyl, correct me if I am wrong but didn’t these schools get funded using the exact same formula as any other (including State) start-up school?

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  11. Rightandleft (691 comments) says:

    David, The concern most teachers have is that these schools will not take the low performing students they claim to target but rather the better performing students with motivated families. Many here on kiwiblog understand that but are fine with that.

    As noted above first term NCEA results should not be compared to overall results from previous years. Internal assessments have 3 times higher pass rates than extrernals in low decide schools. Not all assessments are equal either. Travel and Tourism credits are much, much easier to earn than History credits for example. Not knowing what subjects the students took previously and what they are taking now it is impossible to draw conclusions.

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  12. Danyl Mclauchlan (941 comments) says:

    Danyl, correct me if I am wrong but didn’t these schools get funded using the exact same formula as any other (including State) start-up school?

    When you give a state school a million bucks to buy some buildings the state owns the buildings as assets. When you give a million dollars to a private company to buy some buildings you’ve give a million dollars to a private company.

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  13. david (2,194 comments) says:

    Danyl, I will bow to your obvious detailed knowledge of the contents of the contracts as signed.

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  14. ross001 (240 comments) says:

    Teachers formerly teachers at State schools are employed by Vanguard, at higher salaries than they were paid by those State schools.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11200998

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  15. Ross Miller (1,618 comments) says:

    Particularly dumb comment from Gordon 12.20. But I guess it goes with the territory.

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  16. Rightandleft (691 comments) says:

    The funding technically uses the same formula but ignores the fact that a state school of the same size as these would never be approved because it would cost too much. In fact existing ones would be closed. Smaller schools cost more but have a major advantage in being able to have very small class sizes.

    As a result these schools cost $12,000 more per pupil than state schools on average.

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  17. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    So the government thinks they’ve found the answer?

    One can then expect that similar moves will be made to all schools in New Zealand ($1 million for buildings, and $15,000 extra for each student), to ensure that all kiwi children receive the same level of chance.

    I expect it will be announced in today’s budget.

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  18. ross001 (240 comments) says:

    Danyl, I will bow to your obvious detailed knowledge of the contents of the contracts as signed

    Interesting that Vanguard teachers are paid much more than their State counterparts. Like Judith says, we should expect an announcement of a massive cash injection into the public education system to ensure everyone has the same opportunities.

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  19. Pete George (23,833 comments) says:

    we should expect an announcement of a massive cash injection into the public education system to ensure everyone has the same opportunities.

    So a small rural primary school in Northland should get the same per-pupil funding as a larger urban secondary school?

    Or should the funds be distributed based on outcomes?

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  20. mjw (401 comments) says:

    So families who are dissatisfied with their educational experience, and change schools, then get better educational outcomes. Not sure why this is assumed to be unique to charter schools. Could just be due to extra family effort, change of scene, or the intervention in the child’s routines. Hard to draw conclusions without proper comparisons.

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  21. dime (10,222 comments) says:

    Danyl – where did your extra 15k per student come from?

    as for the other comments, the answer seems to be, pay the same teachers more and the results will get better? so they are intentionally slacking off at the moment? what c*nts

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  22. david (2,194 comments) says:

    Ross001 – Please note, Danyl was referring to Capital assets rather than operating expenses. Please do try and have an honest debate here.

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  23. wikiriwhis business (4,209 comments) says:

    first of all they boasting of ONE term. Hardly significant.

    Secondly, this is a private school and high decile. No miracles being wrought here.

    I only ageee in a democracy such institutions of learning should be free to thrive.

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  24. Colville (2,318 comments) says:

    david@ 1.07.
    If Ross001 were to try honest debate he would have nothing to say.

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  25. Ross12 (1,488 comments) says:

    wb — I agree it is only one term but it is good to see progress in the right direction.

    High decile ?? What matters is the change in performance of the kids. Even if after a year that change is smaller than shown after a term it has to be good . But for me the most important change I would be looking for would be a change in attitude to learning ( part of this would be reflected in the truancy rate or lack of truancy)

    For those moaning about costs. If there is extra now ( I’m not sure about the costs) then it will be a lot less than the cost of housing some of them in prison later because that is where some of them might have ended up.

    What I find offensive about those who are anti the charter school trials is that they are prepared to see a significant proportion of our kids fall through the cracks as the normal school system has not worked for them.

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  26. RRM (10,104 comments) says:

    Danyl Mclauchlan (1,053 comments) says:
    May 15th, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    And all it took to get those results was a $1 million dollar cash handout and an extra $15,000 per student per year in taxpayer funding.
    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 10

    By contrast, how much funding per student per year does the average state school receive?

    I don’t believe I’m especially socialist, but I’m in the camp where the village state should offer an education to every child. So if this is a more efficient way of doing a better job of that, then it’s a GOOD thing.

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  27. dime (10,222 comments) says:

    “Secondly, this is a private school and high decile. No miracles being wrought here.” – yeah im not sure its your regular high decile kids. they dont look it to me. bused from all over id say

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  28. Rightandleft (691 comments) says:

    Based on information from an OIA request done by the PPTA we now know the exact funding these schools get and can compare. The average secondary schools gets about $7,000 per student per year, while the average for the 5 pilot partnership schools is $20,000 per student per year with the variance running from $9k at one of them to $40k at the other extreme. That does NOT include their one-off start up grants which are around $1 mill each.

    Now there are some reasons for the disparity. State schools pool resources like RTLB funding between them and they own their own infrastructure while partnerships may have to rent or buy their own. But when we come right down to it that doesn’t come close to explaining a disparity that large. The main factor is the small size of these schools, which is exactly what allows them to have smaller class sizes and some other benefits as well. State school can’t benefit from this advantage because the Ministry considers such small state schools unprofitable and merges or closes them to save the taxpayer.

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  29. Anodos (127 comments) says:

    Try another OIA R&L and let someone with a few more skills and a little less bias than Tom Haig of the PPTA work with the figures. The real difference is much closer and Haig left out a massive amount of centralised services that state schools get. It also failed to take into account that the set up funding for Charter Schools is/was a lot less than would be provided for state schools. The nett per student cost works out less over time for Charter Schools + plus they have the flexibility of bulk funding – stupidly fought against by PPTA for years – leaving NZ Principals hamstrung in terms of providing for the kids that the new schools are reaching.

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  30. doggone7 (850 comments) says:

    E. Campbell
    “If they want to proclaim this success, it needs to be followed up by some more information so valid conclusions can be drawn.”

    Your sensible comments hint at caution in interpreting the results because the scope of myriad aspects of them is not known.

    No-one yet has said that the pupils achieved well because of the solid background that they had been given in their previous schooling. Without core abilities from (say) level one could they have gained level two credits?
    If pupils were unsuccessful doing sciences at level one in previous schooling and then moved on to do different subjects in this school and were successful many conclusions could be drawn because there would be many factors at play.

    The most certain thing is that the bald statements in the press release will find many takers devouring and repeating them as blind propaganda. The unquestioning presentation of them on here suggests the political intent of playing on the ignorance of the minutiae of schooling, term one, NCEA and the cohort attending that school. In depth analysis and caring about schooling? Swept away in a torrent of nonsense.

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  31. Danyl Mclauchlan (941 comments) says:

    the answer seems to be, pay the same teachers more and the results will get better? so they are intentionally slacking off at the moment? what c*nts

    Only, most of the teachers teaching charter school students aren’t getting paid more. One of the things the charter schools have spent their million dollar taxpayer handouts on is minibuses, so they can bus their students to actual state schools where they get taught by the same teachers they always did, only at vastly greater expense.

    Why are their results better? Maybe there’s some magic happening on the minibus on the way to and from school? Or, maybe there’s a reason these charter schools are exempt from the OIA, and the students aren’t doing better at all and the schools are just fabricating the results because no one can audit them.

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  32. thedavincimode (6,890 comments) says:

    Or, maybe there’s a reason these charter schools are exempt from the OIA, and the students aren’t doing better at all and the schools are just fabricating the results because no one can audit them.

    Fuckwit.

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  33. itstricky (2,027 comments) says:

    So you take the same students, the same teachers, the same curriculum and the same qualifications. You throw them in a blender with some magic pixie dust and the occassional “field trip” to the local State school. Et voila, you get much better results. Can’t wait until they publish the magic fairy dust recipe (in the spirit of Country of course) so that all those unfortunates at lowly State schools can all benefit.

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  34. OneTrack (3,375 comments) says:

    itstricky – Of course it is impossible that charter schools could be having a positive effect. The teachers unions all agree.

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  35. itstricky (2,027 comments) says:

    Well yes, results too good to be true, a? I’m on a voyage of discovery here. All this using the same students, same teachers, State resources on the side, same curriculum and same end qualification. There has to be some ‘double double, toil and trouble’ in there somewhere, right? Be good when they tell us all what it is so we can apply it to all schools.

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  36. Anthony (768 comments) says:

    God you’re a dick Danyl! You don’t like the results so immediately claim they are bogus. The state knows best aye? Welcome to North Korea!

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  37. itstricky (2,027 comments) says:

    Of course, stopping short of crying ‘conspiracy’, one still has to wonder why they aren’t subject to the OIA.

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  38. ShawnLH (6,707 comments) says:

    Charter schools have a track record of delivering better results overseas.

    Lefies Danyl and istricky have lots of bluster, but no facts.

    “New York City recently released official progress reports for the city’s 1,230 schools, including measures of how each school compares with other schools that have similar students. The reports provide yet more proof that charter schools–which outperformed traditional public schools by a wide margin–are working. Eight of the top 11 elementary and middle schools by student performance are charters, and four of those charters are in Harlem.

    What might be most notable about the city’s findings, however, is that Harlem’s experiment with school choice has improved educational outcomes not just for the select few (some 10,500 currently) who win lotteries to attend charter schools. Although critics claim that charter schools succeed at the expense of district-run schools–because, the argument goes, charters “cherry pick” students, leaving behind those who are hardest to educate–Harlem’s results prove otherwise.

    Of New York City’s 32 school districts, three serve students in Harlem. Suppose we treat all of Harlem’s charter and district schools as a single district (while separating out the Upper West Side, which shares a district with Harlem). In 2006, the third-graders in this Harlem district were near the bottom of the citywide heap–28th in math and 26th in English. Today, this overall group of Harlem students ranks 16th in math and 18th in English.

    This is what the so called caring left are fighting tooth and nail. Their hatred of private sector involvement blinds them to the gains for disadvantaged students that have been achieved with some charter schools.

    If it can work in Harlem, it can work in deprived areas of New Zealand.”

    http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2012/10/new_york_charter_schools.html

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  39. Danyl Mclauchlan (941 comments) says:

    God you’re a dick Danyl! You don’t like the results so immediately claim they are bogus. The state knows best aye? Welcome to North Korea!

    Sorry – I’ll stop acting like someone from North Korea and leave the free and independent thinkers of Kiwiblog to go back to heaping praise on DPF’s endless happy press releases praising the government and its policies.

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  40. itstricky (2,027 comments) says:

    Good come back…

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