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Special Education announcement timing 'cynical'

Anne Tolley MP National Party Education Spokeswoman

17 October 2008

Special Education announcement timing 'cynical'

National Party Education spokeswoman Anne Tolley says it's hard not to be cynical about Labour's timing of a long overdue announcement for more funding for the Kapi Mana Special School in Porirua.

"I've visited this school and know that they have been fighting for years to get funding.

"They have been begging the Ministry of Education for a rebuild every single year that Labour has been in power. The school was in such a dire state that in 2006 it had to be closed temporarily because maggots from dead rats were found in the ceiling.

"No responsible Minister of Education would have left children in these appalling conditions for so long."

Mrs Tolley says John Key announced National's policy for Special Education funding on Monday. It was included in the party's package for a Crusade on Literacy and Numeracy.

"National has committed an extra $3 million per year to expand special schools and encourage the development of satellite classes developed by them.

"We've also committed an extra $18 million per year of ORRS funding to help students with the highest special needs. We've costed this funding whereas Labour has produced no fiscals and won't until after the election.

"Under National, Special Education won't have to wait until three weeks before an election to get some attention."

For more information on National's policy on Special Education funding visit: http://national.org.nz/files/2008/Education_Policy_Crusade_for_Literacy. pdf

ENDS

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