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National will provide flexibility for schools

National will provide flexibility for schools

National’s Education spokesman, Bill English, says bulk funding is the first step towards providing the flexible education system that parents want for their children.

A Colmar Brunton survey of 1,000 parents, released yesterday, shows that parents want schools to have the freedom to be able to make choices about what and how students should be taught and that this should be a reflection of the school’s community.

The survey found that:

- 76% of parents think schools should be allowed to specialise in particular subject areas or sport if they choose to do so.

- 84% of parents believe individual schools should be allowed to teach their community’s positive values.

- 79% of parents believe schools should be free to offer alternative examinations such as the Cambridge exams.

- Just 30% of parents believe the Ministry of Education should decide what their children learn at school.

Mr English says bulk funding gives schools the flexibility to provide the kind of education that reflects the wishes and realities of local communities.

“Labour’s policy of centralised control of schools has created a vast bureaucracy which sees the average secondary school spend 35 days a year filling out 150 different forms. This is completely out of step with the wishes of parents and the needs of their children.

“National knows that school boards and principals are more closely attuned to the needs of their school communities than bureaucrats in Wellington ever will be.”

National has pledged to decentralise the education funding system and move all schools to a single grant which will cover both salaries and operational costs.


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