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Mr English gets it wrong - no.1

16 February, 2005

Mr English gets it wrong - no.1

Claims by the National Party that education groups participating in a review of the New Zealand Scholarship exams have been gagged have been rejected as "complete fantasy" by Associate Education Minister David Benson-Pope.

Mr Benson-Pope says he felt compelled to set the story straight because National's education spokesman Bill English appears to have embarked on a campaign of misinformation.

Mr English yesterday claimed school principals and education sector groups have been told that they cannot make further comment while the review is taking place.

"This is wrong. This assertion is so outrageously stupid and patently false that Mr English must substantiate the claim or withdraw it.

"Apart from being untrue it must strike anyone with an ounce of reason that it would also be an impossibility – the review group not having yet convened. Yesterday I identified groups I am wanting to participate but none have yet nominated their representative."

Mr Benson-Pope says Mr English was proved wrong only hours after making his wild claim when the PPTA, one of the groups the Minister has invited to take part in the review, issued a media release.

"I believe the facts of this matter speak volumes."


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