Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Another Brick in the Wall

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  • Sacha, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    I'd also argue access should have a fundamental call on budgets, then prioritise some of the other stuff.

    And any system that relies on quality of individual or family advocacy tends to be captured by the better-off, as some have noted. Achieving genuine equity demands a more systemic response - including how any priorities are determined and maintained.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19743 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Sacha,

    including how any priorities are determined and maintained.

    I still don't know why you want to prioritise anything. We teach our children literacy and maths. Strategic goals very within that, but we don't prioritise literacy over maths, or teaching maths to some children over teaching maths to others. Why should the right to accessing the curriculum of some children have priority over the right of others?

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Emma Hart,

    assuming ... aren’t fraudulent bastards

    This won't happen. Most people assume other people will behave they would in any given situation. Hence the people making the rules assume everyone would rort the system for as much as possible.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    I still don't know why you want to prioritise anything.

    Because resources are not unlimited and all needs are not currently being met.

    I am not talking about prioritising between access needs, but after those have all been met. Otherwise getting political support for this basic change from current practice will probably require saying where extra resources will come from. It's not a case of what I *want*, but more how the world works.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19743 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    would fake an intellectual disability in their children just so they can get a teacher aide

    But the ONLY reason for wanting your child to have a teacher aide is to allow your child to perform better. Isn't that we want our parents to do? What possible personal gain is there for the parent?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Sacha,

    Because resources are not unlimited and all needs are not currently being met.

    Sacha I love you but this sentence right here? It makes no sense. The fact that all needs are not currently being met is the crisis that should make us rethink how we distribute resources. And to say that resources are not unlimited is tantamount to saying that resources need to be capped, which I thought you were against. The reality is that we treat a lot of resources as if they were unlimited even in the absence of crises. It's true that the money comes from somewhere else, but that is an issue of overall political priorities, not of priorities within disability education. We could spend less on roads, less on private schools, less to bail out finance companies, less on film industry subsidies - so long as we made the political decision of regarding equity of outcomes in education more important than or at least as important as those other things.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    if you can show me how the right to education of one child is greater than the right to education of another child, then we’ll prioritise between them.

    While I really do think you are right I also think this is the wrong answer to the question.

    The reason is that every bit of education you can squeeze into a person makes them less expensive for society. It is CHEAPER for the country to spend extra money to educate for the dozen or so years that a person receives education than to have to provide more support for the rest of their lives.

    The reason I wouldn't use your (correct) answer is that the people handing out money just don't think that way, they can't parse your response and hence ignore it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    It is CHEAPER for the country to spend extra money to educate for the dozen or so years that a person receives education than to have to provide more support for the rest of their lives.

    I don't like this argument. If for no other reason that it justifies not supporting the work or education choices of disabled adults, on the basis that by then they are a lost cause. I don't want the state to educate my daughter so she can become a productive member of society and cost less to the taxpayer in the long run. I want the state to educate my daughter because she has the right to an education just like everybody else. It's about social opportunity, not economic efficiency.

    But the ONLY reason for wanting your child to have a teacher aide is to allow your child to perform better. Isn't that we want our parents to do? What possible personal gain is there for the parent?

    We have two neurotypical children with no special learning needs. Are you suggesting they would benefit from having a teacher aide? I really don't think they would. (In fact one of them has a teacher aide due to a medical condition and we've been pretty clear about the fact she shouldn't interfere with his education. Just check he stays alive.)

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    I don’t like this argument.

    I get that. Like I said your argument is correct. But I don't believe it is an argument that can result in a change in policy. Neither Nat nor Lab have shown any signs of doing what's right just 'cos. Instead they both respond to arguments that target revenue and/or cost, functionally both parties are simple minded accountants.

    You're right my argument leaves adults more vulnerable to penny pinchers, assuming it's an either or and not a both.

    one of them has a teacher aide ... Just check he stays alive

    That does kind of help his performance :).

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    That does kind of help his performance :).

    He consistently meets the national standard in aliveness.

    I get that. Like I said your argument is correct. But I don't believe it is an argument that can result in a change in policy. Neither Nat nor Lab have shown any signs of doing what's right just 'cos. Instead they both respond to arguments that target revenue and/or cost, functionally both parties are simple minded accountants.

    I'm not terribly interested in working with them. What's needed is a revolution. I have my personal model for this, which is the radical reform of the mental health sector in Italy in the 1970s. No reason why we couldn't demand a change of that magnitude.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    The fourth R: respiration.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    Are you suggesting they would benefit from having a teacher aide?

    Seriously what I was boggling at was the idea that people who are inclined to cheat and lie for gain (which appears to be the assumption of the ministry) are more likely to be involved in some actual, ya know, money making scam rather than trying to get their child extra help at school.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    not of priorities within disability education

    I. am. not. disagreeing. with. you.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19743 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Sacha,

    Okay, I must not be reading you right. Apologies.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    The reason I wouldn't use your (correct) answer is that the people handing out money just don't think that way, they can't parse your response and hence ignore it.

    this

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19743 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    It's true that the money comes from somewhere else, but that is an issue of overall political priorities, not of priorities within disability education. We could spend less on roads, less on private schools, less to bail out finance companies, less on film industry subsidies - so long as we made the political decision of regarding equity of outcomes in education more important than or at least as important as those other things.

    That's what I meant too - sorry, caffeine levels critical.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19743 posts Report Reply

  • John Holley,

    Emma - your post cut me to the core. These continual attacks on our most vulnerable members of society are a terrible indictment on us all,

    The test of the morality of a society is what it does for its children.
    ~Dietrich Bonhoeffer (German Pastor and Nazi opponent who died in a concentration camp)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 142 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    I want the state to educate my daughter because she has the right to an education just like everybody else.

    We might just pay an extra cent in the dollar in tax, so that all people might enjoy a fundamental right.

    There's an irony here, in that New Zealand is ranked by the United Nations Development Program as the 6th most developed country in the world, in good part on account of the very high levels of education New Zealanders experience (in number of years, rather than outcome measures). New Zealand is a developed country. But it's one in which the overarching political framework is one that accepts/tolerates/embraces social exclusion, on a large scale. How do we change this? I don't think it's going to be enough to have a half-hearted promise from this or the next Minister of Education to increase funding within the current model; this ameliorates rather than ends the failures of provision.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to George Darroch,

    I don't think it's going to be enough to have a half-hearted promise from this or the next Minister of Education to increase funding within the current model

    They're not even doing that. Inclusion is now one of the three strategic focus areas of the Ministry of Education - alongside the achievement of Maori and Pasifika students - but this focus has no funding attached. However I agree that increasing the funding within the current model will never lead to real change.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    I have my personal model for this, which is the radical reform of the mental health sector in Italy in the 1970s. No reason why we couldn’t demand a change of that magnitude.

    What does that template look like? And who would have the social and political resources to make that happen?

    It appears to me: (as an outsider to this process) that there isn't yet the level of organisation as a political force that could see transformation on the scale you're talking about. While there are pockets of activism and community, these aren't linked up to create outcomes, nor are the necessary allies yet on board. Are these the right impressions, and if so, what's necessary to change that reality?

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to George Darroch,

    Are these the right impressions

    Yes

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19743 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to George Darroch,

    We might just pay an extra cent in the dollar in tax

    I'm happy to pay more tax to educate Gio's children!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to George Darroch,

    What does that template look like? And who would have the social and political resources to make that happen?

    To put it as simply as I can, it involves a very robust framework for establishing and protecting the rights of mentally ill individuals, alongside very stringent duty-of-care requirements for the organizations that provide them with treatment and social services. Underlying these is a philosophy of care from the psychiatric profession that stresses autonomy over intervention and psychotherapy over the use of drugs (which is not to say that drugs aren't used, of course). Whether we have the social and political resources to make that happen here, it's harder to say. The mental health reforms in this country were vastly less successful, this has to be said.

    What I would say we urgently need is for people in the profession - and not just disabled (or mentally ill) people and their families - to come on board. Advocacy has to include them and in this respect the gagging of public servants is a real obstacle to progress.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    I'm happy to pay more tax to educate Gio's children!

    My kids are fine, though, that's the thing - to echo what others have said. If we write on this board chances are we're the lucky ones.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    The point is, like most kiwis, paying tax for education of our children is something I actively want to do. Despite having none of my own.

    I perhaps go further than most in that I'd vote for any party (yes even the greens with their stupid GE policy) if they promised to increase taxes, some of which would go into inclusive evidence based education policies.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

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