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Mr English, it must be everyone else that's wrong

10 August 2005 Media Statement

You are right Mr English, it must be everyone else that's wrong

Education and Science Select Committee member Lynne Pillay has criticised National Education spokesman Bill English, questioning if he has even read a report into an NCEA examination question.

The Select Committee reported back today after an extensive investigation into a 2004 NCEA level 1 History question concluding that "there was no evidence of a deliberate political bias" in setting the question.

"The conclusion of the Select Committee could not have been plainer or less ambiguous," said Ms Pillay. "It was the conclusion of the Select Committee and for Mr English to claim afterwards that the question was biased is outrageous.

"His attendance at the Select Committee was sporadic but he cannot claim that he was not part of the discussions and deliberation and now he's carry on like some spoilt school boy who can't accept a decision. It's not an untypical approach of Mr English."

Ms Pillay says Mr English was often caught out in the Select Committee process issuing tedious monologues criticising the exam setters for using political stereotypes, and then in the next breath labelling them all as part of some "left leaning" conspiracy.

"Mr English must be disappointed that the entire premise of the inquiry, National's complaints that the question was biased, was completely dismissed.

"But maybe we'll just have to keep humouring Mr English – ok Bill, you must be right, and it's everyone else that's wrong. Does that make you feel better?"


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