By: Simon Collins

Outspoken Northland principal Pat Newman has been elected to the professional body governing teaching standards, the Teaching Council.

Newman, the principal of decile-2 Hora Hora School in Whangārei, has been a leading critic of Government policies such as the new rules on child restraint, and recently called for more prosecutions of parents of children who go truant.

He is one of seven people elected to the Teaching Council in the first elections held since the Labour Government restored elections for the body, which were scrapped by former Education Minister Hekia Parata in 2013.

In his election statement, Newman described himself as “a straight shooter known for standing up for principles and principals”.

“It is absolutely crucial that we make the Teaching Council of Aotearoa a truly representative body of our profession with strong members who are willing to stand up for what is right and not be cowed into just following ministry or politicians’ whims,” he said.

Newman is president of the Tai Tokerau Principals’ Association and will represent primary principals on the revamped council.

The other elected members are:

  • Clair Edgeler, Albany, national professional services manager of the Best Start childcare chain, representing early childhood education leaders.
  • Lorraine Carr, acting head teacher of Parkland Kindergarten, Palmerston North, representing early childhood teachers.
  • Anna Mackinnon, deputy principal of St Mary’s School in Tauranga, representing primary teachers.
  • Patrick Walsh, principal of John Paul College in Rotorua, representing secondary principals.
  • Pip Woodward, deputy principal of Otumoetai College in Tauranga, representing secondary teachers.
  • Dr Jenny Ritchie, associate professor of education at Victoria University in Wellington, representing teacher educators.

Education Minister Chris Hipkins will appoint a further six members to the council. The new members will take office on July 1.

Source: NZ Herald

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