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20 hours free education applauded by Montessori

23 August 2005

New offer of 20 hours free education applauded by Montessori Association of New Zealand

The Montessori Association of New Zealand applauds Labour's move to extend an offer of free early childhood education for children attending community-owned centres to those attending privately-owned centres.

The Government's decision to extend the free childcare hours for three and four years olds to all teacher-led services will be welcomed by Montessori centres throughout New Zealand, says Ana Pickering, Executive Officer of the Montessori Association of New Zealand.

"Many Montessori centres are privately owned and others are community owned," she says. "It did not make sense for our sector to have the free community hours going only to one group, simply because of who owned the centre."

All Montessori centres, whether privately or community owned, seek to offer quality Montessori learning environments under the same regulatory, funding, staffing and accountability requirements as any other ECE service.

Ms Pickering said the Government's decision to extend its offer of 20 hours a week free early childhood education for three and four year-olds means parents throughout New Zealand will continue to have a genuine choice about what kind of early childhood service they wish their child to attend.

ENDS

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