National fails to listen to Kawerau

Press Release – New Zealand Labour Party

National’s announcement of a new school for Kawerau today is an arrogant dismissal of the community’s parents, teachers and students, says Labour Education spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta.Nanaia Mahuta
Education spokesperson

21 December 2011

National fails to listen to Kawerau

National’s announcement of a new school for Kawerau today is an arrogant dismissal of the community’s parents, teachers and students, says Labour Education spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta.

“Education Minister Hekia Parata’s excitable announcement today that she was closing Kawerau Intermediate and merging it into Kawerau College makes no mention of the community opposition to this proposal.

“The Minister needs to be working alongside this community not dictating her ideology at them.

“Labour will continue to watch the situation to ensure that learning is being made the priority as the Government and the community work through this issue.

“I would hate to think that the Government is putting ideology above the best interests of the education of children.

“In a community as close knit as Murupara those children deserve the very best options from a public education system. A merger of this scale would need the strong endorsement of the parents and community to ensure success.

“Unfortunately the decision to close the intermediate in direct opposition to the wishes of the community raises questions about whether National is listening at all.

“Hekia Parata said today she had carefully considered the views of the community before making the decision.

“Given she has been the Minister of Education for just a few days, how careful was that consideration?

“The Kawerau Community deserved to be listened to by the new Minister. Labour is listening and we will continue to make the concerns the community heard,” Nanaia Mahuta said.

ENDS

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