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Minister stalls on race-based funding

Hon Bill English MP

26 March 2004

Minister stalls on race-based funding

Trevor Mallard's review of race-based funding cannot be taken seriously when he is already hiding information on decile funding, says National's Education spokesman Bill English.

"Race relations Minister Trevor Mallard is refusing to release information on which schools would have their funding changed, and by how much, if the race-based component was removed from decile rankings," said Mr English.

Trevor Mallard, who is also Education Minister, said last month that he was exploring options for decile-funding, which has a clear race-based component.

Questions lodged by Mr English on March 2nd relating to this race-based component have not been answered, and the Minister's office have been evasive over when answers can be expected.

Official Information Act requests from National to the Ministry of Education have also been denied, and are now the subject of a complaint to the Ombudsman.

"We believe Trevor Mallard already has this information, because of public comments he has made about the effect of removing the ethnic component from decile funding.

"The review on race-based funding is much more about politics than substantial policy changes.

"The public are very suspicious of Labour's agenda on race. Denying the Opposition information on these issues just increases this suspicion," said Mr English.

Ends

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