Secondary teachers’ plans to strike next month show “how disconnected they are from the real world”, Prime Minister John Key says.
Hundreds of secondary schools will be closed on September 15 as teachers strike for the first time in eight years.
Plans are also in place for rolling strikes later in the year and teachers could boycott after-school meetings if they run too late.
Often when a public figure sternly lectures teachers about how they live in a fantasy world a teacher at some low-decile public school is stabbed by a student shortly afterwards. Hopefully that won’t happen this time around. I wonder if this ‘teachers don’t live in the real world’ trope is connected with people who send their children to private schools – they visit them on parent teacher nights, see all the nice buildings and beautiful grounds and hear about all the extremely well-funded extra-curricular activities and think: ‘This seems like a great place to work! How dare they keep striking and asking for more money!’ In contrast I think about my friends who teach at low decile schools who have students who self-harm by mutilating their faces, or who present ‘discipline problems’ because they’re members of a gang and it might be dangerous to punish them. That seems quite a lot more ‘real’ than any place I’ve ever worked.