Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


More Primary School Children Are Dropping Out

ACT Education Spokesman MP Donna Awatere Huata today revealed figures showing the number of primary school children dropping out of school is rising.

"Labour must introduce a central database to track down the children who drop out of one school and don't enrol elsewhere.

"Without such a system, we have to rely on teachers and principals alerting the Non-Enrolment Truancy Service (NETS), which then searches for that child.

"Answers to my parliamentary questions show that in 1999, nineteen percent of NETS referrals were for children aged nine or under. Last year, that went up to twenty-one percent. At the end of term two this year, twenty-two percent of the kids NETS were hunting for were under the age of nine.

"I wrote to the Education Minister and Associate Ministers yesterday, calling on them to create a central database to monitor all school enrolments.

"We should have a zero tolerance policy toward long-term truancy with kids so young. Mr Mallard 'hopes' to start a brief trial of a database monitoring 15-17 year-olds, at some stage in the future. That's too little, too late. For one thing, it's the wrong place to start. We especially need to ensure our youngest kids are in school.

"New Zealanders were appalled a week ago to discover that a twelve-year-old boy - the youngest person charged with murder in New Zealand - had not attended school in two years.

"The law is clear: the Ministry and the principal of a child's last school have an obligation to ensure children are in the system.

"But overburdened principals can't do it alone. This Government must urgently create a central database of primary and secondary enrolments. Only when this exists will we be able to avoid the heartache and fall-out caused by letting our youngest kids go years without attending school," Donna Awatere Huata said today.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Bridges’ ‘Meth Crooks’ Leadership Failure

Back in June, Bridges publicly accepted that Housing NZ had got it wrong, and that the National government had acted upon bad advice.

Now, you’d think this admission would create a broad bi-partisan basis for compensation to those families who had been unfairly evicted, at considerable cost and emotional distress. Some people had lost their possessions in trying to meet the expense of the upheaval.

Not everyone felt so compassionate. More>>


Multimedia & Transcript: Acting PM's Press Conference

Winston Peters, Acting Prime Minister while Jacinda Ardern is in New York for the UN Leaders' Week, held a short press conference Monday after chairing this week's cabinet meeting. More>>

General Assembly: Ardern Rejects Trump Call For War On Drugs

New Zealand will not be signing the United States' document calling for global action on the war on drugs, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says. Ms Ardern is in New York for the United Nations General Assembly this week, along with about 140 other world leaders. More>>


Pay Equity: Cabinet Funds Deal For Oranga Tamariki Social Workers

The Minister said that an agreement in principle has been reached between Oranga Tamariki and the PSA on a settlement worth $114.6m over five years. More>>


Hunting v Pest Control: Tahr Control Needed To Protect Alpine Habitats

A cull of introduced Himalayan tahr browsing conservation land in Kā Tiritiri o Te Moana/ the Southern Alps is needed to protect special alpine plants and their habitats, Conservation Minister, Eugenie Sage said. More>>


Protest At Sea: Judge Discharges Greenpeace Activists

The judge today discharged Norman and Howell without conviction, saying the cumulative consequences of a conviction would be out of proportion to what was “low level” offending off the Wairarapa coast in April 2017. More>>


No Reshuffle: Meka Whaitiri Removed As A Minister

Meka Whaitiri will be removed as a Minister with immediate effect... The decision was made after receiving a report into an incident that occurred on 27 August in Gisborne, involving Meka Whaitiri and one of her staff. More>>





InfoPages News Channels