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School closure criteria needs to be made clear

14 September 2012

School closure criteria needs to be made clear

The Education Minister must explain to the people of Christchurch the criteria on which she made the decisions about which schools will stay and which will go, the Green Party said today.

Yesterday, in another bungled education move, the Government announced the closure and merger of many schools in Christchurch.

“Many of the schools that are being closed and merged are in the more vulnerable areas of Christchurch; the places that need good schools the most, so why are these being closed?” Green Party education spokesperson Catherine Delahunty asked today.

“It’s right for these decisions be made on the criteria of the state of buildings and land and population changes but we need to know what other criteria were used.

“I want to know if the decisions are based on schools’ educational achievement and if the failed national standards were used at all.

“National standards don’t work and should never be used to make decisions about which schools will be closed.

“Educational achievement is a resourcing issue, not a performance one but actually resourcing the schools that need it in Christchurch is apparently off the negotiating table.

“Moving kids from school to school to school, as will happen if these plans are carried out, is going to be the most damaging for their achievement.

“I have requested an urgent debate for the next sitting day in Parliament as we need to hear more about how these decisions were made.

“The Education Minister needs to be open with Christchurch parents who are rightly worried about what’s going to happen to their kids,” Ms Delahunty said.

ENDS

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