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Policy makers must listen to parents in education


1 June 2005

Policy makers must listen to what parents want in education

“Education is shaping up to be a major election issue, and all political parties would be wise to consider what parents want to see in education,” says Maxim Institute Policy Manager, Nicki Taylor.

Maxim Institute’s latest education report, Freedom for schools, found the government is out of touch with what parents want in education and the Herald-DigiPoll found that only 16 .3 % of respondents believe the education system has improved under Labour, despite an increase in spending of $3 billion.

“Education was ranked the third most important issue for voters. The Government must reconsider who is spending the extra money and how it is being spent”, says Nicki Taylor.

The findings of the Colmar Brunton survey commissioned by Maxim Institute in 2004 reveal that parents want schools to have freedom over the important decisions affecting their children daily.

“Parents want schools to be freed up from centralised control—the hallmark of the current system. Parents trust schools to make better decisions for their children than bureaucrats in Wellington”, says Mrs Taylor.

“Giving schools more freedom makes sense and international examples of school autonomy show that what parents want is both reasonable and workable. Political parties that ignore what parents want will face the music on Election Day,” says Nicki Taylor.

Freedom for schools, released by the Maxim Institute, makes several innovative policy recommendations to help bring the education system into line with what parents want. As a think-tank, we are pleased to make available Freedom for schools as a resource for anyone with an interest in education.


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