Butt out, teachers tell Families Commission

The Dominion Post 02/09/2009

The Families Commission has been told to butt out of primary schools’ business after it criticised them for expelling and suspending too many pupils. The commission said yesterday that primary schools needed to rethink how they handled badly behaved pupils as the number of suspensions and expulsions skyrocket. Commissioner Kim Workman said the problem needed to be addressed before the pupils reached secondary school, where behaviour was more entrenched and difficult to turn around.

But teachers’ unions have criticised the commission for airing its opinion, saying the comments were bizarre and disappointing. Mr Workman said part of its role was to promote debate.