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Parents and schools voices shut out on donations

Parents and schools voices shut out on donations

At midnight tonight submissions will close on the Education (School Donations) Amendment Bill with a lot of parents and schools not having their chance to be heard, National’s Education spokesperson Nikki Kaye says.

“The Government have rushed this legislation and not given schools and parents enough time to have their say. This Bill has the potential to have a large impact on parents and schools and there is no credible reason for such a short process.

“The Minister of Education’s answer during estimates hearings this week that this is a ‘short and very simple Bill’ is disappointing, and does not demonstrate an understanding of the level of potential impact to schools, and the hundreds of thousands of parents who are asked for donations.

“It instead appears the reason they don’t want a full Select Committee process is because this is another example of the Government failing to deliver on its promises.

“Due to the tight timeframes the Select Committee’s only attempt to address the Bill was by trying to communicate directly with all schools mid-way through this week.

“Labour promised all schools would be incentivised to end school donations. Their donations policy instead has been restricted to deciles 1-7 and will leave out 700 schools. There are a number of upset schools who are going to be tens of thousands of dollars disadvantaged.

“We have already heard a number of schools speak out publicly around the inequality of the policy with many disadvantaged families in schools with high decile ratings.

“This Bill will inevitably raise wider issues around Government policies related to what schools should or should not be charging or fundraising for. I encourage you to make a submission on this important Bill before they close.”

Note to editors: Link to submissions on the Bill can be found here

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