Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Time for the Minister of Education to stop dodging

Time for the Minister of Education to stop dodging and save Salisbury School

Eternally embattled Minister of Education Hekia Parata must step up, front up and stop dodging questions regarding the future of Salisbury School, says the PSA.

"The decision around the future of Salisbury School has been overdue for months, and the ambiguity is leaving parents, staff and students in limbo. It’s time the Minister stopped hiding, muddying the waters and being dishonest about her Ministry’s intentions," says Erin Polaczuk, PSA national secretary.

For 100 years, Salisbury School in Richmond has offered a supportive and nurturing environment for girls from years 3-10 with severe intellectual disabilities and other high and complex needs, enabling them to positively contribute in their own communities. Since the introduction of the Government’s Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS) and its highly complex application process, attendance has dropped, and critics have argued that the IWS limits Salisbury’s admissions due to its focus on specific behavioural indicators rather than intellectual disabilities like autism.

"While the IWS is a good model for targeting some at-risk kids, it has been unfairly deployed in limiting parents’ access to schools like Salisbury. Prospective attendees have even reported being told by Ministry officials that the school’s fate has already been sealed, which is both misleading and confusing," says Ms Polaczuk.

"The Minister is happy to parade around talking up the benefits of charter schools, but she has been utterly disengaged and dismissive of Salisbury’s very persuasive, argument for an enhanced focus on autistic and intellectually disabled students.

"We’re calling on the Minister to listen to the parents, staff and workers at Salisbury and front up with a decision on the school’s future; ideally one that is based on empathy and evidence rather than hollow rhetoric and jargon.

"It may be an election year, but the Minister needs to stop ducking and show some leadership so that these girls, parents and students aren’t dealt a lifelong blow to their wellbeing."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Anzac Day:

Reshuffle: PM Announces Changes To Ministerial Portfolios

Prime Minister Bill English today announced the appointment of Gerry Brownlee as Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nathan Guy as Minister of Civil Defence, Nikki Kaye as Minister of Education and Mark Mitchell as Minister of Defence.

The changes follow the resignations from Cabinet of Hekia Parata and Murray McCully.

In other changes Simon Bridges has been appointed Leader of the House and Nicky Wagner has been made Minister supporting Greater Christchurch Regeneration. More>>


Q+A Transcript: CTU Call For 'National Standards' On Wages

‘If you look at countries who do better than us, who pay wages better, who have more competitive industries, more successful economies, they have systems where there are national standards.’ More>>


Health Workers Respond: People's Mental Health Report Released

The People's Mental Health Review reinforces a recent YesWeCare.nz survey of 6,000 health workers, which found nine in 10 believe they don't have the staff or resources to deliver the care Kiwis need when they need it. More>>


More Mental Health:

Energy: Greens Launch Plan For Cheaper And Cleaner Electricity

$112 million for winter warm-up payments to help low-income households cover their power bills • setting a goal for 100 percent renewable electricity by 2030 (in average hydrological conditions) • an investigation into the electricity wholesale market. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Aged-Care Settlement

Until yesterday, a National government has always been the sworn enemy of women seeking justice in the workplace, in the face of gender-based pay discrimination. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news