Contesting contestablity: The New Zealand special education service

Vivienne Ivory
Vol 12, Number 1-2, p.14
I will argue that the attempt to introduce ‘contestability’ to the New Zealand special education service is by its nature problematic to this sector and therefore has not yet been implemented for two primary reasons. First, there is a basic lack of fit between the principles that underlie 'contestability' and the particular needs of the sector. Secondly, this lack of fit has meant that the government has been unable to come up with a viable method of implementation, as demonstrated by the practical objections raised by those involved in special education while the policy has been developed. By examining the origins of recent political change in New Zealand, the forces that shaped the development of policies such as con testability and allowed them to predominate, can be seen more clearly.