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More Christchurch kids get a smart start

8 October 2004

Hon Jim Anderton, MP for Wigram, Progressive Leader

More Christchurch kids get a smart start

"The Labour Progressive government's latest funding investment of over $365,000 for expanding and modernising early childhood education services, will ensure that more Christchurch kids are to get a smart start to their education," Wigram MP Jim Anderton, announced today.

Conductive Education Canterbury will receive $318,837 to build a new centre in Wigram, providing thirty new places for young children; Avonside Early Childhood Centre gets $25,679 for health and safety improvements; University of Canterbury Student Association is getting a planning grant of $15,000; and Te Whanau O Putaringamotu has a top-up of $6,372 for its new building.

Wigram MP Jim Anderton says the total of $365,888 is part of the annual funding from the government's Discretionary Grants Scheme.

The government will spend $451 million on early childhood education services in the 2004/05 financial year. That's an increase of $135 million or 45 per cent since 1999.

"The Labour Progressive government strongly believes in providing opportunity for all. Getting more under-fives into top quality early childhood education is a high priority in providing educational opportunity for our young New Zealanders," MP for Wigram, Jim Anderton said.

Research shows that regular and high quality early childhood education makes a noticeable and positive impact on a child's educational success. The Discretionary Grants Scheme gives more children the chance to gain from the benefits of quality early childhood education, giving them a leg-up to future achievements.

"We're focussing on early childhood centres in areas of highest need, aiming the funding at people from low socio-economic and rural backgrounds," Jim Anderton, Progressive leader said.

ENDS

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