Sometimes I feel that Ms Parata (our esteemed Minister of Education) is chasing her tail. One minute she favours paying ‘good teachers’ more through some sort of performance payment scheme, then she backs off and concentrates on appraisal systems that ‘could’ deliver enhanced pay for a number of teachers.
What next? -----Oh why not ask that teachers all have a post- graduate qualification? Great, just one problem—or perhaps two. How long is it going to take to get those teachers on board and where are they going to come from. Of course--- she has forgotten that the Government is taking away the allowance for post graduate studies.
Shoot yourself in the foot each time you announce policy, Ms Parata. It’s not your fault though. You have cabinet ministers making up policy on the hoof and a leader who cares only about ‘saving money.’ Too bad about the ramifications—after all he won’t be around when he loses the next election—he can’t handle not being a winner.’
Isn’t it nice to know that the future for our kids and our country is in the hands of such flip-flop politicians? Labour, Greens and the rest--- take note. You are not immune from such practises. History really does repeat itself if the lessons are not learnt.
The Manukau is a beautiful harbour; one that features hugely in New Zealand’s history. To Maori it is sacred, a provider and a means of transport. To Europeans, it was an early site for settlement; even rivalling it’s more illustrious neighbour on the other side of the isthmus as a port that was closer to Australia.
It has been abused n the past, used merely as a dump for Auckland’s sewerage, but now it is slowly healing as technology gives us better answers to waste disposal.
The Manukau has another underlying feature--- its ability to take can often far outweigh its propensity to ‘give.’ The infamous Bar at the entrance to the huge harbour has been the scene of numerous tragedies, the worst being that of the Orpheus in 1863, when so many lost their lives.
Today the harbour is still capable of striking back when plans made by men are not always the best. Give it a chance and the Manukau will punish. A family is on mourning today after yet another tragedy, this time a father and his son.
We must never underestimate this harbour. The currents can be unpredictable and even close to shore can present issues that must be taken into account. So many families have lost loved ones over the years and the sad part is that many of these ‘accidents’ could have been prevented.
What appears to be a calm surface is merely a mirage. The tide turns quickly and the mud can trap. If winter holds the harbour in its deadly embrace, then the chilly waters will wreak havoc on fragile human bodies.
We must learn to respect this magnificent harbour. We must take precautions when we enter its domain. No one wants to lose family members. No one wants to read of yet another death and when we do not learn from past experiences, then more fool us for underestimating the powers of this brooding and ever changing harbour.
I am havin' a ball writing THE RIVER ALWAYS FLOWS. I'ts such fun (sorry Miranda's mum!). I have no plan, no cear idea where it is all going, no idea how long it will be and half the time I am laughing when I write it. Ideas come to me in the middle of the night, when I'm driving-- hell----I'm in a fantasy land and I love it. Try it sometime!
I hope to see increasing its on my books as I keep releasing them as a serial. Will nayting come of them? Who knows? Maybe you do. I still dream. I still write because I can't stop.
I had an uncle who used to write to newspapers. God, he would have loved this medium. maybe I got it all from him.