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Government Eats Humble Pie over Kids’ Kai

Tracey Martin MP
Spokesperson for Education

28 May 2013

Government Eats Humble Pie over Kids’ Kai

New Zealand First says the Government’s decision to become involved in feeding children at school should come with an apology to principals who’ve been dealing with children battling to reach their potential because they’ve come to school hungry.

Education spokesperson Tracey Martin says “I recall sitting in one of the National Standards information days with Auckland principals listening to a decile one principal tell the then Minister of Education Anne Tolley that before he could begin to educate the children he needed to feed them. She told him words to the effect that she was tired of that excuse from principals like him.

“In light of the Government’s back-track today, Ms Tolley, might like to ring that principal and offer an apology.

“Kids learn better and the behaviour in the classroom improves when their tummies aren’t rumbling.

“New Zealand First would like to see a targeted programme throughout all schools so that if any child turns up hungry, they’re fed.

“Under the Government’s scheme today, children attending a decile four Primary School will receive breakfast support but when they move on to the decile five intermediate next door the pantries in their houses will still be empty.

“I congratulate KidsCan, Sanitarium and Fonterra for taking the lead. It’s a shame the Government has been so slow to come aboard,” says Ms Martin.

ENDS

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