‘Treating students like dogs’

Screenshot: Whaleoil

Dear Minister Martin

It is with great justification that our trust, families and students will be absolutely repulsed by your comments about charter schools treating their students like dogs in your speech in parliament last night.

Despite frequent invitations, you have never visited our two partnership/charter schools.

Can I ask you please to entirely apologise or to be clear and name the schools you visited? It is very poor practice from the minister for children and an associate minister of education to make such statements and tar any/all of the schools with the same brush.

As I am sure you were delighted to know the two Villa Education Trust partnership schools are currently transitioning into the state system and are now working very hard with the ministry to do this well. Comments like yours from a government minister are unacceptable and unhelpful.

Given that you have chosen never to visit our partnership schools but continue to choose to make uninformed comments from afar – maybe you could read our ERO reports (which include facilities), the Martin Jenkins report or the attached Cognition Education report as commissioned by the Minister.

A public apology and clarification is deserved and expected.



Alwyn Poole
Villa Education Trust