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  • rmacculloch

Have 308 people in the Education Ministry's Curriculum Development Team spent over $100 million on a 60 page paper of shallow nothingness?

In 2022, the Curriculum Centre at the Education Ministry employed 308 staff, according to an Official Information Request. This past week it was announced 202 were being laid-off. When you look up "The NZ Curriculum" on the Ministry of Education's Website, it says, "We're preparing to close this site as we transition to Tāhūrangi" but if you click on that site you get an incoherent jumble of chaos. At least it is amusing - there is a "unit" that helps "students develop an understanding of the financial challenges faced by superannuitants in their local community". That must get the youth of NZ excited out of their minds. As for the NZ Curriculum document, it contains the flimsiest, shallowest, lightest-of-weights 60 pages of silly blurbs & patronizing clichés, mostly in bullet points, mixed with waffle, with 30 pages focused on specific subject aims. Even those are full of funny lines like, "Key Competencies - Thinking ..". The shambles is introduced with a line, "It is my pleasure to introduce this revision of the NZ Curriculum" by the Education Secretary. After you've read it, you are left wondering, "So where is the NZ Curriculum? Did I miss something?".

The odd feature of the document is that its "Published in 2015 by the Ministry of Education" & was "First published for the Ministry of Education [in] 2007". But that pre-dates the Ardern government. So what have the 308 staff working in the Curriculum Centre been doing these past several years? Were the 202 staff just made redundant mulling over changes to a 60 page document? Maybe how to change font size & color? If the paper called "The NZ Curriculum" was submitted as a Year 12 school project, it would fail. If you multiply the 308 staff by an average salary of $80,000, a conservative number given Wellington pay-scales, you get about $25 million dollars per annum. Has the Kiwi Taxpayer been billed that amount of money year after year - that is, over $100 million - for 60 pages of PR, marketing & comms-inspired glossy pages of nothingness? The "NZ Curriculum" as published by the Education Ministry is worth no more than one weeks work by one competent person.



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