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Decile funding: another U-turn looms

16 June 2004

Decile funding: another U-turn looms

An indication from the Education Minister today that his review of race-based funding in schools has forced the Government to reconsider the decile funding formula looks like another U-turn in the making, says National's Education spokesman, Bill English.

Mr Mallard was responding to questions raised in select committee hearings today.

"This will be news for schools who believed Trevor Mallard earlier this year when he said that removing ethnic weighting would make little difference to school funding."

In an answer to a written question in March 2004, Mr Mallard said that if socio-economic weighting was increased to replace ethnic weighting, the difference would be minor.

"Clearly, the review has shown that ethnic weightings do have a significant impact on school funding," says Mr English.

"Schools would not have been expecting major changes to decile funding. Some lower-decile schools with mostly non-Maori pupils will find that they have missed out for the wrong reasons, and others may face serious funding cuts.

"The Ombudsman has had to step in to force the Minister to release his calculations and I look forward to receiving that information.

"National welcomes a review of decile funding. We support more funding where there is more need, but this should be based on achievement levels rather than on race," says Mr English.

Background

1735 (2004). Hon Bill English to the Minister of Education (2 March 2004):
What is the list of all schools that would have their funding levels changed if the ethnicity factor was removed from the decile-funding formula, specified by school, with the decile as calculated with ethnicity as a factor and with the decile as calculated without ethnicity as a factor?

Hon Trevor Mallard (Minister of Education) replied: The answer depends on the re-writing of calculations, and I am advised that if socio-economic weighting was increased to replace the ethnic weighting, differences would be minor.

1736 (2004). Hon Bill English to the Minister of Education (2 March 2004):
What is the list of all schools that would have their funding levels changed if the ethnicity factor was removed form the decile funding mechanism, specified by school with the amount of decile-funding they would receive when their decile is calculated with ethnicity as a factor and with the amount of decile-funding they would receive with ethnicity withdrawn from the decile-funding formula?

Hon Trevor Mallard (Minister of Education) replied: The answer to this question is provided in PQ 01735(2004).

ENDS


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