Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Crunch time for Pacific education

Labour
2000 web siteA change in government was needed in order for there to be any improvement in Pacific Island educational achievement, Labour education spokesperson Trevor Mallard told a Pacific Island education forum meeting in Wellington today.

Trevor Mallard said Labour was determined to close the gaps in educational achievement for children in different communities in New Zealand.

"The reality is that many of those who are not doing well educationally are from Pacific Island backgrounds. Under National and Act - the situation is going to get worse. They will continue to promote competition among schools so that there are winner schools and loser schools.

"They want educational vouchers which will mean that more wealthy people can top their state subsidy up so that their children get better resources and smaller class sizes and children who come from poorer homes will be left in large classes with less funding for things like books and computers.

"Tertiary fees will go up even further and student debts will get higher.

"Labour has a comprehensive education plan which is focused around improving quality, closing the gaps, and lowering the costs of tertiary education.

"In early childhood education we will be introducing equity funding to help centres servicing low socio economic communities and for programmes to encourage greater Maori and Pacific Island families participation in early childhood education. We will also increase capital works funding for the early childhood sector including help for communities to establish licensed centres where there is a significant need. This is likely to have a particular benefit for Pacific Island early childhood education provision.

"In the schools sector, closing the gaps is a key priority. For a start, those schools will be better funded. The money that the Government tried to use to bribe schools into bulk funding will be used to help all schools - especially schools in low income areas.

"Labour is also prepared to be innovative to come up with solutions to help schools that find it hard to recruit qualified and experienced staff - including extra financial incentives. There will be scholarships to encourage more Pacific Island people to become teachers.

"Our policy on information technology includes the need to help poorer schools purchase computer hardware and software. This is important for us as very few Pacific Island families can afford computers, yet it is a really important skill that our children need.

"There is also scope within Labour's policy for special initiatives, like homework centres, to improve the standard of learning. I am confident that Pacific Island communities will support these initiatives.

"In tertiary education and training - lowering the cost is vital starting off with a fairer student loan scheme whereby full-time and other low income students will pay no interest on their loans while they are still studying.

"We will also attack the issue of fees starting off with negotiating agreements with tertiary institutions which ensure that increases in government funding are reflected in lower fees being charged to students. There will also be mentoring programmes for Pacific Island students and scholarships to encourage students from low income households to take further education opportunities.

"In the training area, there will be a modern apprenticeships scheme and better learning and careers advice for secondary school students.

"This election is a crunch time for Pacific Island education. There is no status quo. Voters get a choice of voting for a far right government or voting Labour with their party vote for a change in direction to improve the opportunities for all New Zealanders," Trevor Mallard said.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Welcoming The Major Health Reforms

Usually “reform” of government agencies is a cost cutting exercise in disguise, but this morning’s revision of the health system looks totally different. These reforms amount to the biggest shake-up of the health system since the neo-liberal reforms of the early 1990s, which have now been completely reversed. Good. The main ingredients announced by Health Minister Andrew Little this morning have included the setting up of a new and truly independent Maori Health Authority... More>>

 

The Conversation: If We Want To Improve NZ’s Freshwater Quality, First We Need To Improve The Quality Of Our Democracy
Since the fatal Havelock North campylobacter outbreak in 2016, freshwater quality has rightfully been a major political issue in Aotearoa New Zealand... More>>

Government: Major Reforms Will Make Healthcare Accessible For All NZers

Putting a greater emphasis on primary healthcare and ensuring fairer access for all New Zealanders are two of the main drivers of health sector reforms announced today by Health Minister Andrew Little. “We are going to put the emphasis squarely ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: Border Exceptions Will See More Families Reunited

Hundreds more families who were separated by the border closure will be reunited under new border exceptions announced today, Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi said. More>>

ALSO:


PM Ardern And PM Morrison: Commencement Of Two-Way Quarantine-Free Travel Between Australia And New Zealand

Joint Statement by Prime Ministers Scott Morrison and Jacinda Ardern Commencement of two-way quarantine-free travel between Australia and New Zealand Today, Australia and New Zealand have fulfilled their commitment to establish two-way quarantine free ... More>>

Claire Breen: ACC’s Policy Of Not Covering Birth Injuries Is One More Sign The System Is Overdue For Reform

Claire Breen , University of Waikato Recent media coverage of women not being able to get treatment for birth injuries highlights yet another example of gender bias in healthcare in New Zealand. More>>

Police: Police Accept Findings Of IPCA Report Into Photographs Taken At Checkpoint

Police accept the findings of a report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) relating to photographs taken at a checkpoint in Northland. On November 16, 2019, Police set up a checkpoint down the road from a fight night event in Ruakaka ... More>>

ALSO:


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels