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Government disingenuous about school funding

QPEC Release: Government disingenuous about school funding”

“The John Key-led government continues to lack sincerity and honesty about how it is funding school property investment, while continuing to mislead the public on its controversial asset sales programme”, says QPEC Chairperson, Bill Courtney.

On the day of the announcement of the Genesis share float details, we see the following statement from the government: “Proceeds from the sale will go in to the Future Investment Fund, which has so far raised about $4 billion for investment in assets like schools and hospitals, without the need for borrowing from overseas lenders,” says Finance Minister Bill English.

But the government only recently announced that the new super school in Christchurch (and possibly others) would be structured as a Public Private Partnership. In the UK, Treasury advice is to use PPPs only when public sector funding is not available, while the UK Audit Office view is that PPPs are expensive and potentially corrupting, with excess profits and “off the books” deals.

PPPs are a form of privatisation of the public education system. Christchurch is not the place – nor is this the time – to experiment on privatised funding models nor to allow the private sector to benefit from the public purse.

But if you were to listen to Bill English and John Key, it is supposedly not even necessary. Yeah Right.”


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