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


Ministry bungle puts childcare centres at risk

Hon Bill English

National Education Spokesman

30 July 2003

Ministry bungle puts childcare centres at risk

"Labour will have to change their policy to avoid the closure of up to 400 early childcare centres, currently servicing 13,500 children," says National's Education spokesman, Bill English.

"Trevor Mallard's officials have told him that a flawed and misguided analysis by the Ministry of Education means that hundreds of early childcare centres face closure when stringent new staffing regulations come into force on 1 January next year."

The regulations require childcare centre supervisors to be registered with a Teacher's Council approved qualification.

If centres cannot find suitable staff they will be forced to close.

"Documents released to me under the Official Information Act show that in May the Ministry woke up to the fact that an earlier report had failed to identify the ramifications of the new regulations and that hundreds more centres would be affected than previously thought," says Mr English.

In January the Ministry estimated that 142 centres were at risk of closure. By May the number had increased to as many as 400, more than 13,500 children will be affected.

"The closure of any centre will cause major disruption in the lives of both children and parents who are often dependent on their centre.

"Unless the Government changes tack, thousands of families could find themselves without childcare at the beginning of next year and they may not know it until it happens.

"This bungle shows just how out of touch the bureaucrats are with the day-to-day running of childcare centres.

"Among other things, the Ministry failed to note the fact that most centres require more than one supervisor to account for breaks, holidays and shift-work.

"These papers make it clear that the Ministry and the Government are more interested in appearing to be hard-line than actually accounting for the realities of early childhood education.

"The reality is that experienced teachers have been doing a great job, even if they have the wrong qualifications. Parents know good centres from bad and are in the best position to decide who should be there to look after their children when they can't be," says Mr English.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news