November 23, 2014


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Doctor’s sex quiz shocks mother

JESS MCALLEN

The mother of a 12-year-old boy whose doctor asked him if he was sexually active, watched porn or was having suicidal thoughts is outraged her husband was asked to leave the room during the questioning.

The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, says her son was shocked and her husband appalled when the GP asked the husband to leave so he could ask the boy what she described as “totally inappropriate” questions.

“The health issue was regarding a personal area, so we thought it was just carrying on about that,” she said.

The GP was following a protocol dubbed a HEEADSSS assessment – which stands for Home environment, Education and employment, Eating, peer-related Activities, Drugs, Sexuality, Suicide/depression and Safety from injury and violence. It is used as a tool to screen youth who may be at risk.

The boy had previously had trouble sleeping and didn’t like crowds, but his mother is questioning whether the topics covered were appropriate.

“Why do they have to sexualise our children? Why did we not have this topic discussed with us before we consented? We had a right to know.”

Her complaint to the Health and Disability Commissioner was unsuccessful on the basis that the boy’s father had given permission. However, she said he would never have consented had he known what his son was going to be asked.

“We felt violated. The doctor had gone into areas of his life that he should not have gone into. Certainly not without the consent of his dad.

“There are some 12-year-olds having sex, but some of us choose not to sexualise our children. We want children to be children and their innocence to be there.”

Youthline’s Stephen Bell said that although it’s ideal to have families on board, sometimes they can be a risk.

Youthline, a counselling service for youth, uses the HEEADSSS assessment as a guideline to understand what’s happening with a young person. It’s not necessarily done in the first meeting, said Bell, and is about pacing and matching where the young person is.

The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners said HEEADSSS is a good example of a screening tool.

“The college does not explicitly endorse many screening tools [aside from the ABC alcohol screening tool] and our expectation is that if a doctor chooses to use a screening tool they need to make sure it is relevant, used appropriately and its use is supported by evidence,” a spokesperson said.

A guideline to the assessment recommends parents do not sit in because it can limit how much sensitive information the patient will provide.

Read article here: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/63244134/Doctors-sex-quiz-shocks-mother

Comments by Bob McCoskrie of Family First New Zealand:

The problem with the programme and the attitude from groups like Youthline is the basic presumption that children and young people need to be fully aware of every adult concept that we can throw at them, and parents are one of the biggest barriers to young people developing the way they need to. That is completely false. It also continues the ‘war’ on parents in terms of telling parents how to raise and discipline their children, the ‘rights of children’ taking precedence over the important role of parents, parental notification laws for teen abortions, and ‘confidentiality’ being used because of the perceived ‘risk’ of parents.
This programme may be warranted and necessary for a family where it’s known that the parents are dysfunctional and the child are at-risk, but in the case of this family, that was not the case.
Any parents of a 12 year old would be horrified by being excluded from this process involving invasive questions such as ‘have you had obsessions about sex, does homeschooling teach you anything about sex, have you had sex and be sure to always do it with someone you love.’
Questions in the guideline also include “are your sexual activities enjoyable?, how many sexual partners have you had?” Even the questions around depression and suicide may be inappropriate and not suitable for certain ages.
It’s also contrary to guidelines. Under the Health Information Privacy Code parents do have a right of access to their children’s health information as long as the child is under 16.

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From the Smiths: http://hef.org.nz/2011/craig-smith-26-january-1951-to-30-september-2011/

Updated 1 October 2014:  Three years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

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Lack of male teachers ‘affecting boys’

Ministry aware of gender imbalance in schools but doesn’t plan to do anything about it

 Ra-Tane Edelsten, who is studying at the University of Auckland to become a primary school teacher. Photo / Dean Carruthers Ra-Tane Edelsten, who is studying at the University of Auckland to become a primary school teacher. Photo / Dean Carruthers

Students are now less likely to have a male teacher, with many going through their early education years without ever encountering a male role model.

Ministry of Education figures show fewer than one-in-five primary school teachers are male.

Principals want more research on what is putting men off the profession, but fear pay and high-profile sexual abuse cases are to blame.

The Ministry of Education is “very conscious” of the gender imbalance, but says with no shortage of teachers there are no recruitment drives aimed at men.

“Evidence tells us that the most important factor in lifting achievement is the quality of teaching, not the gender of the teacher,” said Dr Graham Stoop, the ministry’s head of student achievement.

Last year 28 per cent of teachers were men, down slightly from 2012 and a fall from 30 per cent in the mid-2000s.

The percentage of male teachers at primary schools fell to 18 per cent (down 1 per cent) and at secondary schools dipped to 42 per cent (down 2 per cent).

Latest Census statistics show only 3 per cent of teachers in the early childhood sector are men.

Principals’ Federation president Phil Harding said many schools struggled to hire male teachers, and there were good reasons why a more even gender split was desirable.

“Look at the percentages of children that are living with no father in their daily lives. We see the fall-out from that with boys that have lost their way, are desperately unhappy, and don’t feel like they can talk about it with mum.

“So that all gets bottled up and rebounds in the playground in anger – deeply seated stuff.”

Read the rest of the article here: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11359588

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From the Smiths:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/craig-smith-26-january-1951-to-30-september-2011/

Updated 1 October 2014:  Three years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading/

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NZ children slip in world maths rankings

Fall from 13th to 22nd blamed on teacher training and disruptions

6 in 10 students say they've never heard of concepts such as congruent figures, radicals and divisors. Photo / Thinkstock
6 in 10 students say they’ve never heard of concepts such as congruent figures, radicals and divisors. Photo / Thinkstock

Class disruptions and a lack of exposure to algebra and geometry are just some of the issues being linked to New Zealand slipping from 13th to 22nd in OECD maths ratings.

A three-part Ministry of Education report on maths class learning environments was released last week. It is based on the findings in the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment 2012 (PISA). The programme happens every three years and evaluates 15-year-old students’ skills and knowledge in maths, reading and science.

This latest report identifies that the drop in maths ranking is due to an accumulation of factors in regards to student opportunities to learn, teaching strategy and student behaviour.

Key findings include:

• 60 per cent of students indicated they had never heard of mathematical concepts such as congruent figures, radicals and divisors.

• Kiwi students were less exposed to formal maths – such as algebra and geometry – than students in the comparable nations of Australia, Canada, Britain and Singapore.

• 40 per cent of students reported that noise and disorder and students not listening to the teacher occurred in most maths classes.

Maths teachers with degree-level qualifications are more likely to be teaching in urban, high socio-economic schools, and students at these schools have higher exposure to complex concepts and formal maths.

Secondary Principals Association president Tom Parsons said the results stemmed from a national shortage of teachers with adequate mathematics training.

“There is such a demand for teachers who come out of university with maths qualifications that they can go wherever they like,” he said. “Usually this is high socio-economic urban areas.”

New Zealand Association of Mathematics Teachers president Gillian Frankcom said the reason for the decline was not clear cut. She said that since 2009, all secondary school teacher graduates had completed a comprehensive maths component and teacher incompetence could not be singled out for student failure.
Quiz: Three math questions (answers below)

1. Solve: 5(t – 4) = 15
2. Simplify: 6(x – 5) – 2(x+1)
3. Solve: 3x(x+4) = 0

For the rest of the article and the results of the three maths questions click on this link: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11358227&ref=NZH_FBpage

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From the Smiths:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/craig-smith-26-january-1951-to-30-september-2011/

Updated 1 October 2014:  Three years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading/

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School’s calming proposal riles parents

10433787.jpg

Take control of your children’s education – Home Educate them yourselves

From stuff 28/08/14

A bitter dispute is raging in the northern Southland town of Riversdale due to the school wanting to introduce a calming technique for its pupils in the wake of bullying.

It is understood some Christian parents at Riversdale are furious the school wants to introduce the “mindfulness” technique, claiming it has Buddhism origins.

Mindfulness is a technique focused on getting a person’s thoughts and emotions in a natural and calm state and in the present moment.

The Education Ministry said it had received five complaints from parents at Riversdale School about the issue and was working with the school to ensure the complaints were dealt with appropriately.

Riversdale School Board of Trustees chairman Dylan Ditchfield confirmed the school was considering introducing the mindfulness programme to its pupils for a variety of reasons, which included bullying, and he said some parents were unhappy about it.

To read all the article and the more than 395 comments go to: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/education/10433317/Schools-calming-proposal-riles-parents 

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From the Smiths:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/craig-smith-26-january-1951-to-30-september-2011/

Updated 22 April 2014:  Two years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading/

Please like & share:

Parents need to question use of technology in schools – doctor

31 July 2014

computer childOneNews 1st August 2014
Trying to advance a child’s development through the use of technology before they are ready could cause more harm than good, a doctor is warning.

Dr Michael Nagel told TV ONE’s Breakfast one of the most concerning things he is seeing is that schools are becoming more reliant on technology, and as a result “we see younger and younger children using things that perhaps they’re not ready for”.

He said researchers, particularly in the United States, suggest that there’s no real need for children who are in kindergarten and primary school to use technology.

Dr Nagel says it tends to isolate children and can impact on a child’s ability to read and write, saying that there is more to be gained from reading a paperback book than reading off a screen.

When asked if he thought it was relevant for parents to want their children to be tech-savvy, he said: “I think that’s a product of an older generational belief that you have to get into computers straight away, because not that long ago you had to know the language of a PC. Now it’s so intuitive you don’t have to do that.”

He said parents should be questioning schools if they are asked to buy a tablet or laptop for their children to work on while they are at school, “because often it’s just a marketing ploy”.

His comments come after a new school in Hobsonville in Auckland went as far as ditching textbooks and pens and pencils for cutting edge technology.

Read more at this link: http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/parents-need-question-use-technology-in-schools-doctor-6043348

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