Nats Ed Policies "Greatest Threat in 128 years!"
National’s Education Policies - Greatest Threat in 128 years!
Taken together the National Party’s education policies represent the greatest threat to public education in the history of New Zealand.
Public education was established here through the 1877 Education Act – 128 years ago – to provide free, quality education to all children irrespective of race or creed, colour or gender.
This would go under National. Don Brash’s policies would not merely undermine public education but would disembowel and dismantle it.
In its place their policies would progressively lead to a privatised education system where quality is based on the ability to pay rather than as a right of citizenship.
Brash’s privatisation policies include –
Establishing so-called “Trust” schools. These are a half way house to full privatisation. The “trust” owns the school land and property and will be able to raise funds privately by issuing shares etc (This is occurring now in Auckland with the Auckland Energy Consumer Trust issuing shares in Vector so that our community owned power company is now part privatised)
Introducing compulsory Bulk funding. This would cut the final link between educational need and government funding and accelerate the differentiation between schools – “winner schools” in high income communities and “loser schools” in low income communities. Loser schools would become social welfare “basket cases” for the poor while schools in wealthy communities are privatised.
Education vouchers for extra tuition for students falling behind. The extra money is welcomed but the mechanism is designed to pump up the private sector and prepare the way for full vouchers – the holy grail for big business in education.
Increasing government funding to private schools (from 1994 to 1999 National increased state funding to private schools by 220%. This meant for example that government funding for Kings College increased to more than $2 million per year despite the far greater educational need at public schools such as the underfunded Otahuhu College on the other side of the wire mesh fence from Kings!)
Brash’s Victorian era policies have no place in a civilised democracy.