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Phillipstown Decision Amounts to Community Bashing

Phillipstown Decision Amounts to Community Bashing

Minister for Education Hekia Parata has yet again displayed the Government’s high-handed arrogance in ignoring the wishes of parents and staff of Phillipstown School in Christchurch, says New Zealand First.

“The Minister announced today she will not alter her original decision to merge Phillipstown and Woolston School as a response to the Canterbury earthquakes.

“The community made its view known from the start - they did not want this merger, they wanted to stay where they are, but the Government didn’t listen and they were forced into a stressful, costly David and Goliath battle,” says Education Spokesperson Tracey Martin.

“This decision is despite the school’s victory in the High Court which forced the Government into consultation, but the Minister never intended to look at this issue with an open mind.

“Our sympathies go out to the principal, staff, board of trustees and families of Phillipstown. The Minister has failed them. Students and families will all suffer, including having to travel further to a new school.

“Phillipstown didn't have a chance against this Government which does what it wants and never listens to the concerns of New Zealanders.

“New Zealand First believes all decisions should be made with true commitment to the community’s voice and needs.

“New Zealand First supports the Phillipstown community and will support the school and community in further efforts to keep the school open,” says Ms Martin.

ENDS

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