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Fletcher Questions Integrity Of School Strategy

21 June 1999
MEDIA RELEASE

Chris Fletcher Questions Integrity of Government Secondary School Education Strategies in Auckland

Chris Fletcher today questioned the government's intention to fulfill its promises to Epsom families and build two new secondary schools in the Auckland Isthmus.

Mrs. Fletcher is angry at the inaction of Government that has resulted in enrolment policies being proposed by some secondary schools

In response to Ministry directives some Epsom schools have been proposing enrolment policies which establish geographic zones. Population growth, coupled with the lack of a new secondary school in the area have forced schools to propose new boundaries, which may leave some Auckland residents denied access to their local secondary school.

"The Ministry of Education's attempt to manipulate school enrolment polices to hide their failure to provide a new school as promised is a shabby way to treat Aucklanders " said Mrs. Fletcher.

"Two Prime Ministers and two Ministers of Education have promised to build new secondary schools so that Auckland are able to attend a convenient, or local school," said Mrs. Fletcher today. "To date, nothing has happened. The Ministry's story continues to be that sites are 'under consideration'. This is not good enough."

Each year population growth, social changes and property development in the central Auckland region make it more and more likely Auckland children will be forced to travel miles away from their neighborhoods because there are not going to be enough places to accommodate them in their own community.

"There are already Auckland children who have been denied the choice to go to their nearest school." said Mrs. Fletcher "The Ministry of Education are failing the people of Auckland because they haven't planned properly and continue to defer the decision to build new schools thereby causing enormous emotional tension in the community. Their inaction is making a mockery of the policy of choice for Aucklanders and continued inaction will make a mockery of the policy of providing places in schools that are reasonably convenient.

Ends

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