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Ombudsman’s findings show Ministry got it wrong

18 December 2012
Immediate Release

Ombudsman’s findings show Ministry got it wrong over Christchurch

The Ministry of Education needs to start its consultation over Christchurch school closures again following the findings of the Ombudsman.

NZEI Te Riu Roa National President Ian Leckie says he welcomes the Ombudsman’s report into the Ministry’s botched handling of information requests about its planned school closures.

He says the findings vindicate the concerns of Christchurch parents and educators over the Ministry of Education’s consultation process.

“We’ve been saying for months that the Ministry has not adequately consulted with the people of Christchurch and has instead tried to ride roughshod over due process.

“This is why teachers have taken the unusual step of giving notice of strike action unless the Government stops and listens to Christchurch.

“School communities will be particularly delighted that the Ombudsman is now planning an investigation into the wider question of whether the Ministry’s processes were adequate to ensure effective and sufficient consultation around school closures.

“It’s very clear that the Ministry of Education has got the process totally wrong. It has completely botched its handling of Christchurch.

“NZEI believes that the Ministry and the Minister of Education should apologise to the people of Christchurch for the way they’ve dealt with them over this issue.

“The Ministry would be arrogant to continue its current direction. It needs to stop paying lipservice to consultation and this time consult properly. Most importantly it needs to listen and put Christchurch children ahead of pre-conceived ideology and cost cutting.”

ENDS

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