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ACT Education Policy an Extreme Attack on our Schools

ACT Education Policy an Extreme Attack on our Schools

“The ACT Party’s new education policy is an extreme but blundering attack on New Zealand’s public education system, characterised by the ACT leader’s assertion that our schools should behave more like supermarkets.* Only ACT would think that an out of control duopoly that is facing a commerce commission enquiry is a model for educating our kids”, says Labour candidate for Epsom Michael Wood.

“ACT’s extremism is on full display in this policy. This fringe party, which won just 2.5% of the Party Vote in its Epsom ‘heartland’, wants to privatise New Zealand’s education system by turning public schools into charter schools. No evidence is presented for the benefits of this approach, only trite lines about the superiority of the free market, and an idiotic comparison between New Zealand’s public education system and the Soviet Union”*

“What makes this education policy even more asinine is that in the very speech he uses to launch it, the ACT leader talks about the importance of education by lauding the public schools and public school teachers who taught him. Like Mr Whyte my alma mater was also Pakuranga College where I also learned History from Miss Stevens. The first subject area we covered in the Seventh Form was the Great Depression, where we learned that a fundamentalist belief in the free-market led to disaster. It’s a shame that he didn’t also absorb that lesson”

“ACT’s only lifeline is the seat of Epsom and they may think that this kind of extreme policy will help their cause. If so, they are badly mistaken. The vast majority of Epsom voters, including long-term ‘small c’ conservative voters value our public education system and know that it is one of New Zealand’s great strengths, and should not be subject to radical experimentation by a party of zealots.”

“ACT’s attack on our public education system is yet another reason for Epsom voters to reject a dodgy deal to wedge ACT into parliament in their seat. Epsom deserves better that a party of fringe extremists who hate public education”, says Michael Wood.


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