Is funding flexibility really such a bad thing for schools?

Stuff reports:

Teachers will mount the first in a series of big walkouts on Monday to protest the government getting rid of funding based on maximum classroom sizes.

They’re not. It is one option, and at the very first stage of consultation. Any decisions are probably a year or two off.

At present, schools are funded for teachers according to a strict teacher-pupil ratio: one teacher for every 15 pupils at year 1,  ranging up to 29 pupils in years 4 to 6.  The minister proposes to replace those ratios with flat funding per pupil. But she insists the Government is spending more than $11 billion on and it’s principals, not her, who decide class sizes. …

The global budget would cover teaching and learning – including credits for teacher salaries – so teachers’ pay would come out of the same pot the other bills.

“It starts putting teachers in competition with the power bill,” said NZEI’s campaigns advisor Andrew Campbell.

The former Green Chief of Staff!

Anyway I wanted to focus on whether it is such a horrible idea that principals would have just one overall budget and spending on staff would “compete” with spending on operational costs.

You see, isn’t this how pretty much every other area of Government works?

DHBs don’t get separate funding for staff and operational costs. They decide how much to spend on extra doctors and nurses and how much to spend on say technology.

It is the same in tertiary education. Every tertiary institute balances spending on staff vs spending on operations.

So why are public schools different?

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