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Victory for parent power

Victory for parent power

The Labour Government's backdown on its schools closure programme will further stoke the anger of thousands of families caught up in the current reviews, says National Education spokesman Bill English.

Education Minister Trevor Mallard is still to confirm the closure of up to 71 schools in areas around the country, including Invercargill, Upper Hutt and Timaru.

"I am urging the Minister to back away from this savage culling and go easy on these schools," Mr English says.

"It's unfair to proceed with closures in Timaru and Invercargill when other communities will now have no closures. Seventy-one schools will close just because the change in political polls was three months too late.

"Today's announcement has made parents even angrier

"The Minister has an obligation to act consistently and listen to the concerns of parents in these areas.

"Other communities have been saved by Labour's backdown.

"The decision is a reaction to the significant pressure applied by communities and spear-headed by National through our "skools" website and postcard campaign.

"Communities are telling us that any changes to schools should be driven by parents' choices and local control.

"Labour has paid a heavy price for being out of step with public opinion again."

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