"We have maintained a silence closely resembling stupidity" - Neil Roberts

Until we have legislation adopted into law to ensure fiduciary accountability and transparency in public affairs we will continue to have human rights breached because the existing crown immunity and lack of any independent oversight invites corruption to flourish.


"Question authority, and think for yourself" - Timothy Leary


"We have maintained a silence closely resembling stupidity" - Neil Roberts


"Information is the currency of democracy" - Thomas Jefferson


‎"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever does." - Margaret Mead

"The truth is like a lion, you don't have to defend it. Let it loose, it will defend itself."

"I = m c 2 [squared] where "I" am information" - Timothy Leary

"Ring the bells that still can ring, forget your perfect offering, there's a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in." Leonard Cohen

"The internet is a TV that watches you"

Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Circus that Passes For the Masterton District Court!

Unbelievably, this is where the Masterton Court are conducting business these days, the busiest Court in the country per head of population, operating in a caravan, because of the utter incompetence of the Court manager, Mark Elliot, and the Ministry of Justice:
Corrupt Police Prosecutor Greg Peters sitting in the Masterton Courthouse caravan with Court staff Nelda and Colin.


The Masterton Court has been perverting the course of justice for as long as I have been in the Wairarapa, this latest incompetence takes the cake! Look at this idiot Greg Peters! Sitting in his little caravan! Mark Elliot, Court Manager, should have been sacked years ago, and there should be a proper inquiry into the many occasions Court Registrar Liz Harpleton and her boyfriend, Police Prosecutor Garry Wilson, have conspired to pervert the course of justice in the Wairarapa and contributed to the scandalous and deliberate cover up of hundreds of child abuse files!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Child Abuse Cover Up Continues by Wairarapa Police:



The ongoing scandal involving NZ police covering up an epidemic of child abuse
and suicide is outrageous and underlines why all New Zealanders should support the work of Transparency NZ and the FOCKCers - if we hadn't been making formal complaints and documenting them on our websites this would still be going on unnoticed - as it is NOTHING constructive whatsoever has been done about addressing these problems - police continue to bully and intimidate victims of REAL crime while they cover up for paedophiles, violent murderous criminals, etc.  The claims by local journalists that officer Mackle alerted everyone to the problem is rubbish - Mackle is one of the worst offenders!

Here's a link to a report about the corrupt, incompetent Wairarapa police and how three years after the inquiry began there's been no progress, the ongoing scandal regarding how they've been covering up for child abusers for years is unbelievable!  Click on the links below to see how long this has been going on for, and how so called "investigators" have been covering up for the offenders and ensuring they get promoted, - they never even INTERVIEWED Sgt Mark McHattie, after he threw hundreds of child abuse files in the rubbish bin and lied through his teeth and said "Hand on my heart" they'd all been resolved - read how he was PROMOTED instead of being booted right out of the public service entirely! I seem to be the only person in NZ who gives a damn about this!

Here's Wairarapa Police Area Commander John Johnston, who boasted of his refusal to resign in the wake of the
scandalous backlog of hundreds of uninvestigated child abuse complaints ignored by corrupt local police under his corrupt command, arrogantly boasting of his latest corrupt coup. Here's the link to the story in the Dompost.

And here's the unbelievable story of how the man responsible for this outrageous incompetence and corruption, Detective Sergeant Mark McHattie, was promoted for it!!!!!  He should be in prison for it!

- And what are they busy doing instead?  Here's
an email I received by accident - from Sergeant Basher to Sergeant Johnston:  
From: Kevin Basher/POLICE/NZ
To:         Murray Johnston/POLICE/NZ@NZPOLICE
Cc:         John Johnston/POLICE/NZ@NZPOLICE
Date: 07/09/2010 07:47
Subject: Fw: Formal Complaint, Information Request: Assault by police, refusal to take complaints or investigate them properly
Kevin Basher---07/09/2010 07:47:45---Something needs to be looked at regarding RAUE using her 'Blog" to make statements regarding our staff . . ."



"Well Nicci I suppose as Finola said, we weren't ever going to write the perfect script. Just one step at a time to shut down as many avenues as possible." 
"In terms of the animal ethics issue, if you and Hugh feel there is any legal risk if she were to take up an issue, I would move to deal with it, otherwise just ignore it again.""She rang Rhoda today (Thursday). 
Having talked with Vicki Bee, George Capes, Hugh and Grant, I told Rhonda to try and fob her off - Unfortunately she threatened to go to the papers, so I spoke to her" 

A letter from my lawyer in 2007 included the following statements:
"I am pleased at the dismissal of a number of charges against you. That is as it should have been in my view. It was always apparent from an early stage that for whatever reason you were a "lightning rod" for Police attention in Carterton. This was, in my view, most unfair to you and unwarranted Police attention resulted in unnecessary charges being laid. On reflection it would have been far better if the Police had been able to discuss any concerns they had directly with you so that those concerns may have been laid to rest in a much more appropriate way." . . . "It is clear that there were many unanswered questions from the Police. We never did get full details from them regarding some of your cases. I have been unable to go back to "the matter of the 2004 letter" simply because of the volume of paperwork and the length of time that it would ave taken to have researched that matter. I do know however that numerous letters were sent to the Police and discussions held with them to try and get some satisfaction in relation to the allegations that they made against you. As I have said, those enquiries were not always met with success."
Arrogant, corrupt idiots are being rewarded by even bigger taxpayer funded salaries for ignoring child abuse, violence and suicide epidemics in favour of harassing hard working law abiding people like me.

Go to the website of the Masterton Library and click on the link to 'Searches', 'Newspaper Index' (- not sure if that link will work), then type in keywords 'police', and 'crime', 'child abuse', murder', 'suicide', etc to see John Johnston's shameful legacy. Look how arrogant he is with getting away with this latest scandal - being appointed to the newly established role of director of sport with the NZ Police Sports Council, of which he's been chairman for 12 years. "The position was not advertised." - no, of course not! The old boys network creates jobs like this for themselves all the time! And while Johnston and his police mates bleat about not having enough resources, Police waste the precious resources they're given on the Police Sports Council and the Mounted Police and other hobbies of their own. Suzanne Mackle is being touted by the media as a hero in all this - nothing could be further from the truth! Mackle wasted her time pursuing the malicious charges resulting in the complaint to the IPCA by Michael Appleby, and committed perjury in her unsuccessful attempt to lie to the Masterton Court about the public meeting in Carterton. She should have been getting on with investigating the child abuse. Instead she was assaulting me and strip searching me for nothing and lying about it in Court!

Wairarapa police continue to refuse to charge Gary McPhee or Michael Francis Murphy. The newspaper article below is not very clear, but basically, on the left is an article waffling on about how it's giong to take 20 years to do anything about the violence and child abuse, and on the right is a picture of Carterton Mayor Gary McPhee sitting on his Harley Davidson, looking like an utter tosser, while a woman touches him up and waffles on about how this "artist" is going to paint his picture - says everything about our community leaders' priorities, doesn't it! If they were focusing on the problem instead of posing for paintings and pictures in the papers it wouldn't take 20 years! Georgina Beyer and Ron Mark are exactly the same, self serving, vain, bullshit artists. Elect the right people and the problem can be solved in about six months! Elect unemployed transvestite prostitutes with no qualifications or references, drunken bullying bikers, and failed politicians like Ron Mark and you'll get a culture of child abuse, suicide and violence - did Ron Mark ever stand in an electorate? Did anyone ever actually vote for him or was he always a list MP? Get rid of these idiots! We need a proper commission of inquiry that is going to interact constructively with the public and hold open counsel with the community! This has been going on round here for generation, everyone knows it, Constable Steve Wakefield was the worst offender! Because the inquiry is incompetently run the problem continues, and as soon as we get rid of one corrupt cop round here there are two worse ones just waiting to take their place, the problem is being deliberately ignored by MP John Hayes and Mayors Gary Daniels, Adrienne Staples and ex MP Ron Mark, who all refuse to address the matter or comment about it, they are condoning it because they're mates with the offenders! The so called independent Police Conduct Authority is as corrupt and as useless as ever after changing their name from the Police Complaints Authority - they aren't independent at all, and they are not doing their job, they are corruptly ignoring formal complaints supported by letters from several well qualified lawyers! Here is a link to a previous related article.




They've got their new police station and their little office girl to make them cups of tea and laugh at their jokes, it's just sickening.  We pay their wages, like those of Bill Wilson and John Moss, Dave Archibald and Gary Smith.

And it's not rocket science to work out the link between deliberately covering up child abuse and reabusing the victims results in Wairarapa having twice the national rate of suicide in a country with some of the highest rates in the world - regularly!

- Confirmed by the latest statistics - see page 5 and elsewhere in this latest document.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Ron Mark up to his Nek Innit:



Last Wednesday night there was a so called public meeting at the new Carterton Event Centre to discuss the Mangaterere stream, which is consistently rated as the most polluted local waterway. It is consistently rated "E" for unacceptable.

Although the public were welcome to attend, they were manipulated and deceived in a display that was an absolute insult to the intelligence.

Failed MP Ron Mark, Carterton's latest Mayor, who follows in the footsteps of other idiots who have managed to get elected locally, such as Georgina Beyer and Gary McPhee, went on forever with all the 'apologies' of all his mates who couldn't be bothered coming, didn't ask if there were any other apologies of course, then proceeded to go on for two hours about how wonderful the Council was and how great it was that the community supported him and the Council, etc, etc. He proceeded to then talk about the farmers, and how wonderful his mate Ray Craig was.

Then there were various speakers, one after another, for about two hours. Some were alright, all were well meaning I think, but it went on and on without any opportunity for active public participation, and it was a big propaganda exercise with the speakers repeatedly stating that the Council and local individuals like Ray Craig were doing a wonderful job of preventing pollution of the Mangaterere - a blatant untruth.  We had been asked to sign a form and were given a number when we arrived, and after all this talking had been going on for about an hour and a half or so, Ron Mark told us all to go and stand in the corner.

Apparently we were to go into four groups and discuss three questions which had been written on large sheets of paper in each corner of the room, and use little sticky notes to write our answer to the inane set questions on. Several people walked out of the meeting entirely at this point, well aware of what the real problems are and utterly sick of the obvious manipulation of the process of community dialogue. I followed the other sheep, and played the little game. Each group had a Council appointed "facilitator". We were firstly asked to introduce ourselves and say a bit about why we were at the meeting. As there were about 25 people in each group that took another 20 minutes or so. We were then given little sticky notes about two inches square and told to write our answers to the three questions on the sticky notes - a real indication of how much our views were valued, the questions were inane and the size of the paper provided was ridiculously small.

None of the questions mentioned or referred to the word "sewage", and up until that point, the meeting had been going for well over an hour and a half and nothing whatsoever had been said by anyone about sewage. Or the local piggery for that matter, they would probably be the second biggest polluter of the Mangaterere, but the Council sewage plant takes first place. They allow seasonal discharges of sewage into it as well as the regular - to the point of continuous - leaks and overflows.  They meeting went on for two and a half hours before the subject of the sewage was mentioned, it was mentioned by me, and Ron Mark has issued me with trespass notices for all Council owned property in revenge for alerting the public to the fact that the Council had been charged in Court for discharging sewage into the Mangaterere, and hardly anyone at the meeting knew about it because Ron Mark was busy telling them all about how wonderful the Council was and making sure it wasn't mentioned.

On the 9th of December it was reported that  the Carterton District Council has offered to pay $20,000 "donation" to the Greater Wellington Regional Council, after appearing in Court charged with illegally polluting a Wairarapa waterway.

On February 24th - when everyone and their kids were swimming in the river - Greater Wellington Council officers noticed the discharge of treated and partially treated human effluent to the Mangaterere stream at three different locations around the Council's sewage plant. The Mangaterere is a major tributary of the Waiohine River, which in turn flows into the Ruamahanga River, Wairarapa's largest waterway.

Residents have been complaining about this for years! The Mangaterere is consistently rated the most polluted waterway in the region - largely because it goes past the Carterton District Council sewage plant! There are unacceptably high levels of bacteria, nitrogen, phosphorous and other chemicals (I tried to get a copy of the reports from the Council yesterday morning, but was told they don't have them!)

Here is a link to the water quality standard website, where it shows that the quality of Carterton's water is rated "D" at one location, and "E" at two other locations. If you click either "Explain grading" or "Explain compliance in the sidebar on the left at that link, you can see that "D" is "Unsatisfactory" and "E" is rated "Unacceptable". This was two days prior to the meeting, the water is unacceptable. It's been unacceptable for years.
[Update - 6 July 2012 - just been alerted to the fact that this site is no longer accessible - ratepayers and taxpayers have the right to know how their water is rated and how pure it is and whether it is acceptable to drink or not! Ring the ESR (government department, blue pages in the phone book) and ask them to sort it out!]

Another major contributor to the problem is the local piggery, this was also not mentioned once by Ron Mark or his mates. These matters were discussed with the quarter of the people at the meeting who I was able to speak with, then we all had to play musical chairs again and listen to the Council appointed facilitator of each group give a "summary" of the answers to the inane questions! I used to work for ACNielsen, a market research company, I've worked for advertising companies, etc, and I can tell BS when I see it. Once again, sewage hardly got a mention, or the pig farm, because everything had been so carefully staged to get everyone talking about what a wonderful job the Council and Ray Craig were doing and how we could all help them. By the time all that was finished we'd all been sitting in the uncomfortable chairs for so long listening to this rubbish everyone just wanted to go home.

I put my hand up and asked how many people were aware of the report and it appeared hardly anyone was. I then asked Ron Mark when we were going to get the full information regarding the state of the sewage system, what he was going to do about the leaks at the identified locations, when he was going to do it (as he had indicated he intended doing absolutely nothing until the upcoming holidays are over - March he said!), and how much it was going to cost to do that, and how much it was going to cost in the longer term to bring the sewage plant up to scratch.

Ron Mark refused to answer any of these questions. Every single one of them. He huffed and puffed and postured, and stuttered and stammered, and then said "Are you Kate Raue?" As if it mattered who I was!  I'm not the only one sick of Ron Mark's political manipulation - here's a link to a Carterton ratepayer who seems to live in Masterton, who also has a local sewage problem, and here's a link to an article titled "Farmer's Slime Fury" - "Mr Tatham says for five years his water troughs have been filling with a thick green slime, caused by nutrient growth from treated wastewater entering his bore. "They've been pumping sewage straight into the water table and we end up with a green scum in our water troughs that's obviously sewage slime. "In the summer months the slime can get up to six inches deep and while the house is on town supply the stock have no choice but to drink it." He said when he initially complained to the council it offered to supply town water for his animals. "But then they went silent for three or four months, and when they got back to us they said the water was running the other way. "They should be totally ashamed of what they're doing - how anyone can pump sewage into the town's ground water is unbelievable."

This gets better, have a read of the article at this link, titled "Carterton Boundary Stack Fuels Dispute", note the photo. Now read this article, titled "Carterton Farmer: It's All a Stack Up" and you'll see that it's actually the reporters at the local paper and Ron Mark who are the ones fuelling the dispute, having completely made it up in the first place - talk about delusional! Instead of attending to the sewage problems Ron Mark has been carrying on about a few bales of silage that aren't bothering anyone except one woman apparently!
Carterton Silage Bylaw Slammed 11 May 2011

Carterton Bylaw in Balance 9 June 2011

Carterton Silage Row Deepens 15 June 2011

"Former Carterton District Councillor Chris Engel said it seemed Carterton Mayor Ron Mark had a "personal vendetta" against him, describing a mayoral appeal to dairy co-op Fonterra as "an abuse of power".  Ron Mark is famous for his little vendettas against local individuals who attempt to engage in democracy and share information in the public interest, and extremely manipulative of the media, and the gullibility of the general public.

In an email last week Mr Mark called on Fonterra to intervene in the dispute, saying in it was "only a very fine line now between Fonterra inaction and indifference". "If Fonterra chooses to do nothing, then we will be able to say, on behalf of the people of the Carterton district, we tried." - worrying about a few bales of silage that aren't bothering anyone, while he's tipping partly treated human effluent into our river!!!

"Fonterra spokesman Rick Osborne said the company was aware of the issue and the area manager had been in contact with Mr Engel on several occasions. We expect our shareholders and suppliers to be aware of community concerns."

Ron Mark is an odious little man, and thoroughly deceitful. He was deviously ushered into the job to finish what Beyer and McPhee were sacked for starting - read about the Whorehouse Fiasco here. He certainly does have a vendetta against Chris Engel, the same as Gary McPhee and Georgina Beyer and others had a vendetta against me, they bully political opponents because they can, trespassing us them from public spaces in order to prevent us sharing information, and using their control of such public facilities to spread slander and propaganda.

I'm clearly not the only one who smells a sneaky little rat at the Wairarapa Times-Age, making a mountain out of a harmless stack of baleage, at least Stu Sowry and Frank Riley have some sense, and confirm the view of the majority, that Ron Mark and his Councillors, who corruptly closed the former Carterton Community Centre to build the widely opposed Event Centre.

It's been reported that the Palmerston North City Council is responsible for polluting the Manawatu River.  This pollution is becoming common practise for Councils apparently.

Check out your local water supply at this link, and if it's not up to scratch, particularly if it's rated "Unacceptable" - STOP PAYING YOUR WATER RATES UNTIL IT IS ACCEPTABLE.  Here's the link to Ron Mark's Council's application to dump sewage into our river - only granted because if it wasn't the town would have no sewage disposal plan according to the panel - and only granted - conditionally - for three years and not the five requested - a damning decision from a Council that spent over six million on 'restructuring' the Carterton Community Centre into an Event Centre that for the benefit of the same people who ripped off the Community Centre and closed it down.

Ron Mark managed to con himself some more free advertising with this piece of propaganda under the guise of Nigel Latta's tv program - full of vague innuendo, glossing over the reality - that Ron Mark is every bit the manipulative bully and criminal low life this astonishing piece of propaganda fancifully suggests that his brother is, Ron's just got friends in the media.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Family Court Judges decisions "offensive" and "inconsistent with the Care of Children Act

It has been reported that in a number of recent decisions the High Court has criticised a number of orders made by Auckland Family Court judges, describing them as “offensive” and “inconsistent with the Care of Children Act."

The judges who made the invalid orders are Judge Jan Walker, Judge David Burns (twice) and Judge Timothy Druce.

In a recent decision, an unrepresented father was awarded the right to costs against the Family Court when he appealed against orders that he had agreed to but without being told by Judge Walker of a statutory cooling off right to first seek legal advice before signing anything that he might regret at a later date if the circumstances changed.

In awarding the costs, Justice Venning described as “offensive” directions made by Judges Walker and Burns that the father was also disqualified from bringing any future applications under the Care of Children Act unless there was a dire and immediate emergency relating to safety of his children. This raises an interesting argument against a relatively common direction of the Family Court prohibiting further applications.

In two other recent decisions, the High Court said Judges Burns and Druce had without proper jurisdiction or grounds suspended parents’ guardianship rights. In one case Judge Burns said he felt the answer to resolving a dispute between two parents as guardians and who shared the care of their child would be to suspend the father’s guardianship rights.

Judge Burns said “I consider nearly all the conflictual situations given as examples before the Court arise when father is operating as a guardian. It does not arise when he is operating as a caregiver. This raises the issue therefore as to whether I can remove him as a guardian or suspend or vary his guardianship rights as one possible solution to the ongoing conflict issues.”

The High Court was critical that the only legal precedent Judge Burns quoted for his decision was an earlier decision of his own where he did exactly the same thing. Justice Woolford noted that “Apart from quoting extensively from his previous decision, Judge Burns did not cite any other authority for the proposition that he had the jurisdiction to suspend the appellant’s guardianship rights…It is my view therefore that Judge Burns has exceeded his jurisdiction in purporting to suspend the appellant’s guardianship rights. Guardianship is a fundamental right of a parent.”


In another recent decision, Justice Woolford addressed the inadequacies of Judge Druce’s decision to remove a parent’s guardianship rights for six months when the parent was neither legally represented or even present when he made the order. Describing suspension of guardianship as a form of deprivation, Justice Woolford said “In any event, I am of the view that a parenting order cannot include deprivation of a parent of guardianship of his or her child.”

If the Principal Family Court Judge reads the decisions of the High Court, one would have to hope that he must surely be wondering what is going on that is causing his judges to get it so badly wrong.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

South End School ERO report 2011

Following on in the tradition of disgraceful governance of the South End School, and the Ministry of Education in general, here is the latest ERO report on the school:

Education Review Office report - South End School Carterton, Wairarapa 07/12/2011

Ministry of Education profile number - 2992

School type - Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

Decile [1] 5

School roll - 102

Gender composition
    Male 65%
    Female 35%

Ethnic composition
    NZ European/Pākehā 56%
    Māori 23%
    Pacific 12%
    Other European groups 5%
    Other ethnic groups 4%

Special Features:
    Two Montessori Classes
    Resource Teacher: Literacy
    Resource Teacher: Learning and Behaviour

Review team on site - August 2011

Date of this report - 7 December 2011

Most recent ERO report(s):
    Supplementary Review - August 2010
    Supplementary Review - May 2009
    Education Review - April 2008
   

The Purpose of an ERO Report:
The purpose of ERO’s reviews is to give parents and the wider school community assurance about the quality of education that schools provide and their children receive. ERO’s reports are intended to be clear, concise, constructive and evaluative. An ERO school report answers the question “How effectively is this school’s curriculum promoting student learning - engagement, progress and achievement?” Under that overarching question ERO reports on the quality of education and learning outcomes for children and for specific groups of children including Māori students, Pacific students and students with special needs. ERO also reports on the quality of the school’s systems for sustaining and continuing improvements.

This report has been prepared in accordance with standard procedures approved by the Chief Review Officer.

    1 Context

What are the important features of this school’s context that have an impact on student learning?

South End is a small full primary school in Carterton. Five classes cater for students from Years 1 to 8, and two of these provide a Montessori perspective. After considerable work by the board and staff, the two approaches are comfortably integrated within the school. Teaching staff are mutually respectful and supportive. Members of both parent communities are represented on the board of trustees. Most students transitioning at age five have attended a nearby Montessori pre-school or an adjacent kindergarten. Students interact positively with each other in the playground and the overall tone is harmonious.

In 2008, ERO identified many areas of school operation requiring development and has reviewed the school in successive years to evaluate progress. The August 2010 ERO report identified that professional and curriculum leadership remained a concern, with considerable support necessary to manage curriculum review, implementation of The New Zealand Curriculum, staff performance and effective communications.

A new board had been elected at the time of the previous ERO review. In October 2010 the Ministry of Education appointed a Limited Statutory Manager (LSM) to oversee personnel and financial matters. The board reduced the number of classrooms from six to five. A new chairperson was appointed in 2011 and the principal has taken on some classroom teaching duties.

    2 Learning

How well are students learning – engaging, progressing and achieving?

Many students enjoy their lessons and are keen to participate in learning. However, they find it difficult to explain the purpose of their activities and describe their next steps. Student involvement in focused learning conversations is desirable to develop their ownership of goals and progress. At present, most feedback and next steps are given by teachers during writing activities, and less so in other learning areas. Written feedback from teachers in workbooks does not sufficiently help students and parents to reflect on learning, expectations and progress.

Nearly 50% of students are on the special needs register, for a range of reasons. In 2011, curriculum leaders presented information in literacy and numeracy to the board about the progress of underachieving students. The variety of programmes for students with gifts and talents are also described. The impact of these programmes on students’ learning is yet to be evaluated. Although students who have extra support mostly make gains, managers need to strengthen teachers’ use of data for these learners to plan purposeful, deliberate interventions and programmes that target identified needs.

How well are Māori students learning – engaging, progressing and achieving?

Managers and staff are committed to catering for the needs of students who identify as Māori. Staff are showing increased confidence in teaching te reo Māori and in reflecting aspects of Māori culture within the planned programme. In 2010, a Māori trustee acted as the link with local iwi. The principal is keen to further enhance relationships and partnership with whānau, making the most of their knowledge, skills and expertise to enhance outcomes for tamariki.

Achievement targets for literacy and mathematics were agreed between school and whānau. However, a picture of how Māori students are achieving and progressing in comparison with their non-Māori peers at South End School is unclear. Improving assessment processes and practice should sharpen the school’s picture of Māori student achievement.

    3 Curriculum

How effectively does this school’s curriculum promote and support student learning?

Managers began developing the South End Curriculum in 2008 and reviewing the charter, vision and values. They have spent a great deal of time aligning mainstream and Montessori approaches in one framework. The New Zealand Curriculum principles still need to be made more visible. Documented expectations are in place for English and mathematics. Guidelines for other learning areas have been updated since ERO was onsite in August 2011. Managers should consider, and document, how coherence and integration across subjects and levels will be achieved. Meeting the requirements for curriculum development and implementation must be given priority.

Student engagement in learning is fostered through interesting contexts for topic studies. Teachers work as a collaborative team, promoting development of the South End values and key competencies for learning. Classroom wall displays make these visible to students and help to reinforce school expectations. Also displayed are students’ questions for further investigation. In these ways student voice is heard, ideas are shared and it is evident that teachers value their participation.

The principal understands the importance of using assessment to guide teaching and learning. Feedback to teachers on their planning and assessment identifies good practice and reinforces school expectations for curriculum implementation. Managers need to support teachers to analyse data more deeply. This should inform more focused planning and strategies, and enable them to be responsive to the range of students’ abilities and interests.

    4 Sustainable Performance

How well placed is the school to sustain and improve its performance?

Trustees show commitment to their role. Training has supported them to make progress in understanding their key responsibilities and to enhance their capability in governance. Financial management has been improved. Expenditure is tracked, and there is clarity around how the available budget will be used to meet annual objectives. The board is focused on improvement.

The principal has started to develop a distributed leadership structure to empower teachers in leadership roles. Delegations and responsibilities are being clarified. The principal should further explore this team approach, ensuring that effective communication and transparent structures for decision making underpin change.

The Ministry of Education has supported managers in refining the school’s annual student achievement targets. However, finalising the 2011 annual plan has been slow. In order to drive practice throughout the year, this document needs to be in place early in the year, underpinned by well analysed and interpreted data.

A clearer picture is needed of how students are achieving across the school, to guide strategic planning and resourcing. An ongoing area for development includes the provision of leadership to further develop staff assessment practices. Managers should collate, analyse and report information to show how well all students are achieving. This process should highlight trends and patterns of achievement, enabling leaders to identify targets and plan school-wide strategies with greater focus.

The board and managers need to establish sound self-review processes. Incorporating formal self review in strategic planning, with timeframes stated for revisiting and discussion, should assist the board to evaluate progress toward goals, and be responsive to emerging and changing needs.

Greater opportunities for needs-analysis and consultation is likely to have positive benefits at all levels. For example, helping the board and staff to identify, monitor and meet parent and whānau aspirations for children’s learning and development.

Implementation of the performance management system needs to be guided by the documented policy and procedures. Teachers have written their own performance goals, giving a framework for staff appraisal, but this has not been implemented. Teachers’ goals could be better aligned to the school’s overarching goals and informed by consultation with managers, so that professional development needs may be thoughtfully implemented. Roles and responsibilities should be clarified.
Board assurance on legal requirements

Before the review, the board of trustees and principal of the school completed an ERO Board Assurance Statement and Self-Audit Checklist. In these documents they attested that they had taken all reasonable steps to meet their legislative obligations related to:

    board administration
    curriculum
    management of health, safety and welfare
    personnel management
    financial management
    asset management.

During the review, ERO checked the following items because they have a potentially high impact on students' achievement:

    emotional safety of students (including prevention of bullying and sexual harassment)
    physical safety of students
    teacher registration
    stand-downs, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions
    attendance.

The board expects to fully meet its legislative obligations by 2012. Priority should be given to students' learning and include ongoing curriculum development, career education and guidance, teacher appraisal and self review of the effectiveness of teaching and learning:

    the school has to further develop its curriculum, based on The New Zealand Curriculum principles and theory of teaching as inquiry
    provision for students in Years 7 and 8 should include second language learning, and implementation of the recently developed programme for career education and guidance to support transition to secondary school
    teacher appraisal should be strengthened
    self review should be regularly scheduled, evidence based and sufficiently evaluative to inform school improvement.

In order to meet requirements, the board of trustees must:

    through the principal and staff, develop and implement a curriculum for students in Years 1 to 8, provide students with effective learning programmes in all curriculum areas, and select curriculum achievement objectives in response to identified interests and learning needs
    [National Administration Guideline 1 (a)i, (b) I,ii, (c) iv,(d),(f)]
    implement its own personnel policies and procedures to promote highly performing staff
    [National Administration Guideline 3 (a)]
    maintain an on-going programme of self-review in relation to those policies, plans and programmes above, including evaluating information on student achievement.
    [National Administration Guideline 2 (b)]
 In order to improve current practice, the board should ensure that more work is done by managers to enhance school-wide understanding and practice in using the National Standards. This should include well-planned opportunities for teachers to be involved in team moderation and in forming overall teacher judgements about learning and progress.
Recommendations to other agencies

ERO recommends the continuation of the current intervention.
When is ERO likely to review the school again?

ERO intends to carry out another review over the course of one-to-two years.

Kathleen Atkins
National Manager Review Services
Central Region

7 December 2011

Saturday, December 3, 2011

MENTAL HEALTH REPORTS 2005-2010

DIRECTOR OF MENTAL HEALTH REPORTS 2005-2010
SUMMARY OF TRENDS IN COMPUSORY INTERVENTIONS

Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand December 2011


INTRODUCTION

The Director of Mental Health has published six annual reports, which provide unprecedented narrative and statistics on compulsory processes in New Zealand’s mental health and addiction services. The Mental Health (Compulsory Assessment and Treatment) Act 1992, empowers the state to subject people with a mental disorder, who are deemed to be a serious danger to themselves or others, or who have a seriously diminished capacity to care for themselves, to compulsory assessment, followed, if deemed necessary, by compulsory treatment in hospital or in the community. There are a number of human rights concerns highlighted in this paper. They include the position on this issue taken by the New Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the increase in the use of compulsory treatment in New Zealand in the last twenty years, the variation in rates between District Health Boards (DHBs), and the low rates of success people have in challenging their status through the available legal avenues.


Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
In 2006, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities was passed by the United Nations and has since been ratified by the New Zealand Government. The Convention raises big questions about the legality of compulsory interventions in mental health which have yet to be seriously considered by the New Zealand Government.

Prior to the entrance into force of the Convention, the existence of a mental disability represented a lawful ground for deprivation of liberty and detention under international human rights law. The Convention radically departs from this approach by forbidding deprivation of liberty based on the existence of any disability, including mental or intellectual, as discriminatory. Article 14, paragraph 1 (b), of the Convention unambiguously states that ‘the existence of a disability shall in no case justify a deprivation of liberty’. Unlawful detention encompasses situations where the deprivation of liberty is grounded in the combination between a mental or intellectual disability and other elements such as dangerousness, or care and treatment. Since such measures are partly justified by the person’s disability, they are to be considered discriminatory and in violation of the prohibition of deprivation of liberty on the grounds of disability, and the right to liberty on an equal basis with others prescribed by article 14.

Legislation authorizing the institutionalization of persons with disabilities on the grounds of their disability without their free and informed consent must be abolished. This must include the repeal of provisions authorizing institutionalization of persons with disabilities for their care and treatment without their free and informed consent, as well as provisions authorizing the preventive detention of persons with disabilities on grounds such as the likelihood of them posing a danger to themselves or others, in all cases in which such grounds of care, treatment and public security are linked in legislation to an apparent or diagnosed mental illness. This should not be interpreted to say that persons with disabilities cannot be lawfully subject to detention for care and treatment or to preventive detention, but that the legal grounds upon which restriction of liberty is determined must be de-linked from the disability and neutrally defined so as to apply to all persons on an equal basis.’ (United Nations Human Rights Council, 2009).



COMPULSORY TREATMENT ORDERS

Trends over time
In 1954, 87.9 per 100,000 people were subject to compulsory interventions per month in New Zealand. By 1969 the rate had dropped to 70.1 per 100,000. Between 1969 and 1992 the numbers continued to decline. However, between 2005 and 2010 the rate rose to near 1954 levels. One of the Director’s Reports acknowledges that ‘the introduction of compulsory treatment in the community may have increased the rate of compulsory treatment’ (Ministry of Health, 2009, p 29). In the six years since the Director of Mental Health started his reports the number of the applications granted for all inpatient treatment orders increased by 23%, and the number of applications granted for community treatment orders increased by 32%.

Comparisons with other jurisdictions
New Zealand and parts of Australia have very high rates of compulsory community treatment compared to jurisdictions with these powers in North America and Europe (Lawton-Smith, 2006).

Comparisons between DHBs
There is a big variation between DHBs in the rates per 100,000 of people placed under compulsory treatment orders. For instance, in 2010 the rates of people on community treatment orders varied from 40 to 122 per 100,000, with an average of 77. In the same year the rates of people on compulsory inpatient orders varied from 1 to 33, with an average of 14. These variations are concerning and need further investigation.


SECLUSION

Seclusion is defined as locking a person alone in a room they cannot exit without the agreement of the clinical staff. Seclusion is traumatising for most people subjected to it. There are programmes to reduce and eliminate seclusion in various countries including New Zealand. Overall, seclusion rates have stayed much the same since they were first included in the Director’s Reports in 2007 but some DHBs have significantly reduced their use of seclusion. Currently across the country around 17% of inpatients are placed in seclusion.

Ethnic and gender comparisons
The proportion of adults in inpatient units who are secluded varies considerably by ethnicity and gender. For instance, in 2010 28% of Maori male inpatients were secluded but only 17% of non-Maori males were secluded. Slightly more Maori females were secluded than non Maori males. This needs further investigation.

Comparisons between DHBs
There is a huge variation between DHBs in the rates per 100,000 of people placed in seclusion. For instance, in 2010 the rates of people placed in seclusion varied from around 15 to around 250 per 100,000. The Director’s Reports do not provide a robust explanation for this variation.



Office of the Ombudsmen
The Office of the Ombudsmen found a case of potential cruel and inhumane treatment in a mental health patient who had been in virtually constant restraint and seclusion for six years (Ombudsmen, 2009). In response the Director of Mental Health responded he was ordering an urgent report (New Zealand Herald, 2009). In its subsequent annual report the Office of the Ombudsmen noted that it had taken the ‘unreasonably long period’ of 13 months for the patient to be moved to a more suitable facility (Ombudsmen, 2010).


COMPULSORY ELECTRO-CONVULSIVE THERAPY (ECT)

ECT is a controversial treatment where an electric shock to the brain is used to induce a seizure. Today it is usually used to treat severe depression, most frequently in women, particularly older women. Unlike other forms of compulsory treatment, compulsory ECT requires a second opinion from a psychiatrist appointed by the Mental Health Review Tribunal. There is no information on the outcomes of these second opinions. The total number of patients with ECT dropped from 356 in 2009 to 235 in 2010. The average percentage of people given ECT without their consent was 20%.

Comparisons between DHBs
There is a large unexplained variation in rates of compulsory ECT between DHBs. For instance, in 2010 the percentage of compulsory ECT in relation to non-compulsory ECT varied from 35% to 3%, both in DHBs where there is a higher than average use of ECT.


REVIEW OF COMPULSORY STATUS

People under compulsory orders have two major avenues to legally challenge their compulsory status.

Section 16 Reviews
During the assessment period, patients are entitled to have their status reviewed by the Family Court. The percentage of people released under Section 16 ranged from 12.5% and 8.4% between 2005 and 2009.

Mental Health Review Tribunal
The Mental Health Review Tribunal was established under the 1992 Act to consider people’s requests for review of their compulsory status and to release them if they no longer fit the criteria in the Act. The percentage of people who applied to the Review Tribunal for review who were released from their orders ranges from 7.4% in 2009 to 1.3% in 2010. These low percentages are concerning, particularly the 2010 percentage which is the lowest for the six year period of the Director’s Reports.

REFERENCES

Lawton-Smith, S. (2006). A Question of Numbers: The potential impact of community-based treatment orders in England and Wales. London: King’s Fund.

New Zealand Herald. (2009, November 5). Hospital Restrains Man for Six Years. The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved from New Zealand Herald Database.
Office of the Director of Mental Health Annual Reports 2005 to 2010. Available from the Ministry of Health website.

Ombudsmen. (2009). Part 2 Report on Operations. Retrieved from http://www.ombudsmen.parliament.nz/imagelibrary/100312.pdf
Ombudsmen. (2010). Report of the Ombudsmen for the year ended 30 June 2010. Retrieved from
United Nations Human Rights Council. (2009). Annual Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and Reports of the Office of the High Commissioner and the Secretary-General: Thematic Study by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on Enhancing Awareness and Understanding of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Retrieved from United Nations Archives. New York: North America.