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Bitter disappointment at Mallard's actions

Bitter disappointment at Mallard's actions

Thursday 17th Feb 2000
Donna Awatere Huata
Media Release -- Education

ACT Education spokesperson Donna Awatere Huata said today she had been inundated with calls from families who have just been told about the axing of the Whakapiki Tauira scheme - the TIE scheme for Maori - saying they are bitterly disappointed with the Government's actions.

"What news does the Minister of Education Trevor Mallard have for the three and a half thousand Maori families who applied for the Whakapiki Tauira this year and who are now left with nothing?

"This year children wanting to attend independent or Maori boarding schools; children needing out-of-school tuition, or money for school uniforms, or assistance with transport to attend a more distant school; or children wanting to attend integrated or Kurakaupapa schools - these children could have been helped."

Mrs Huata said the Minister's decision to scrap the scheme has convinced her that he has no idea how to close the gap.

"Under the Minister's leadership the gap of educational achievement between Maori and non-Maori will never be closed. This gap shows Maori as amongst the worst achievers in the world in maths, reading, and resulting in a six hundred percent difference in bursary achievement.

"Three years of research has consistently demonstrated that Targeted Individual Entitlement (TIE) will close the gap for Maori students. Whakapiki Tauira is a direct result from this three years of research.

"In the last ten years the government has tried everything - bilingual education, Kurakaupapa education and targeting more Maori teachers. It will be difficult for any government to close these gaps swiftly, but the TIE scheme is a programme that can do it.

"The axing of TIE, the axing Whakapiki Tauira, the axing of bulk funding are all moves in the wrong direction. I predict that the gap in reading, maths and bursary achievement will be wider in three years than it is today."

Ends

Contact Donna Awatere Huata 025570811 or Kathryn Asare 04 4706637

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.


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