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Ban on school sports and culture a disaster

Tony Steel

National Sport, Fitness and Leisure Spokesperson

11 June 2002

Ban on school sports and culture a disaster

Moves by secondary teachers to pull out of extra-curricular activities are a disaster for schools and society as a whole, says National's Sport, Fitness and Leisure spokesperson Tony Steel.

"Cultural and sporting activities are the heart and soul of a school's character. Education is not just about sitting in a classroom with books - sport and recreation contributes to the health and well-being of schools and society, as well as the pupils.

"For many non-academic students sport is a major source of pride, self-esteem and connection with the education system.

"Even the All Blacks are dependent on strong school First XVs. The real worry is that once withdrawn, teacher support may not be reinstated, as happened in Britain. New Zealand is unique in the way we depend on teachers to devote so much unpaid time and effort into these activities.

"The impact of Labour's bungling is now being felt by New Zealand families. Labour has shown they are not capable of settling this dispute - this election is the chance to elect a party which can," said Mr Steel.


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