Our Capability Advisors and Trustees including our auditors, Deloitte; Sir Pat Lynch and Lady Sheila Graham; our accountants, Bentleys; our lawyers, Greenwood Roche; instructed the charity to cease the funding and pro bono support of Feuerstein and their commercial arm FIE due to Israel (1) withholding the 113 certificates for the 2017 classes and (2) mitigation of the $10,000 commission invoiced by Israel for each of the pro bono trainings delivered in NZ – this disabled the sustainability and integrity needed by potential funders (government and private) we were presenting to.
Certification is governed by FIE in Israel and is an exclusive arrangement with the trainers and Israel. Trainers are required to confirm each trainees’ attendance and with this validation, Israel issues certificates. We were declined any involvement. But once the bulk package of certificates arrived in NZ – we had to fund the cost of packaging and couriering of each throughout NZ. At the completion of each training, the trainer sends to Israel the list of his/her attendees who have completed his/her training and Israel issues the certificates. The certificates are then posted to NZ in one bulk package – for Gaze to finance the cost of individually secure-wrapping and couriering each certificate to their rightful owner throughout NZ (there were over 1250 to wrap and courier). This was a cost to Gaze of $38,000 over the four years – averaging $30pp for cardboard, wrapping, courier costs and not including the huge pro bono days of wrapping – thank you to Tass Print for helping us with this!
Israel charged us $10,000 per training, regardless whether there were 4 trainees or 24 – the cost remained the same (Israel was paid over $500,000 in pure commission costs over the 4 years plus a further $250,000 in profit on materials). All training costs were also funded by ourselves – Israel was exposed to no expenses – with all trainings at substantial financial loss to Gaze. Israel also charged $250 pp for the course materials (a 500% increase in the NZ printer’s cost of $50 pp). Repeated requests to only be charged trainings on a per person rate were always rejected – this would have delivered sustainability – the pp rate of just $150pp is prevalent throughout the world, but Israel would not agree to this model being implemented in NZ, wanting to maintain their $10,000 windfall. The upside to this rejection was that I was able to give so many trainees free attendance at the trainings, each paying only the printing cost ($250). I believed that if Israel’s charge was always to be $10,000, regardless of the number of paying trainees, why have a training of just 4, when I could have 24 trained? 24 trained teachers would enhance my determined goal of achieving the traction needed, the demand, research, measurements and outcomes – all imprerative to the long term funding for our learning suppported children from either ministry or the philanthropic arena. It has always been about the children. Not about the adults and their constant strive for money, at the expense of the children.
So we all ‘bit the bullet’ and continued to devote significant pro bono time, resources and funding with the ultimate aim of achieving the tidal wave – implementation in all schools throughout NZ. After 4 years of presentations to all within ministry, government agencies, educational entities and all philanthropic initiatives, I now realise that we actually have to do it ourselves – ministry will never run with an offshore programme and when the final philanthropic entity removed themselves from any further engage with Israel (my last hope), I had run out of all avenues for sustainable funding. I now realise we actually have to design and develop our own meta-cognitive programme, relevant to NZ; one that teaches our teachers how to teach and our children how to learn. Contact me if you wish to be part of this drive.
If you are still (1) without a certificate (2) have wrongly spelt name (3) wrongly detailed course – please let us know. Although Israel has complete control on issuing certificates and afforded us no involvement with the issuing of certificates – other than bearing the cost of packaging and couriering each to trainees – we can track back that the trainer (1) did have your name on her/his list of trainees (2) did have your name correctly spelt, and/or (3) Israel did receive the correct detail on training. Due to early and consistent issues around certificates, we did ask Israel if NZ printing agency could deliver, but this was also turned down.
January 2017 trainings:
FIE printed only 20% of the required course material, an unexpected and significant departure from the previous 50+ trainings delivered in NZ since 2014. All trainees had paid the $250.00 plus GST for the training material, the expectation being to receive the full complement of course material.
Trainers – Josie Singer, Sharon Berenholtz, Diane Bourke, Nikki Maguire, Valerie Lovegreen and Anne Gaze – convened on the Tuesday of the trainings and agreed to instruct the authorized FIE printers to print the missing resources, time being of the essence. This extra printing cost was invoiced by FIE’s printer at wholesale rate to Gaze and this invoice personally paid for by Gaze.
FIE insisted on further payment to them of this printing order – at the retail rate and sent invoices reflecting this; withholding the issuing of certificates until this payment was made to Israel.
This was very disappointing. Deloitte, Trustees, accountancy and legal capability partners challenged this.
We did not have response to (1) why only 20% was printed (2) how trainees were to deliver without this crucial teaching material, and (3) the justification of the full $250 material payment but non delivery of the required course material (Standard trainees, before extra printing was ordered, received just one of the five Teacher Manuals for their $250 plus GST payment).