30 July 2001
Get The Kids To School First Says Donnelly
According to New Zealand First Education Spokesperson, Brian Donnelly MP, the Minister of Education should ensure school
aged children are attending school before embarking on a dubious scheme to make all four year olds attend pre-school.
“The twin evils of educational non-achievement are transience and absenteeism and the government is doing little or
nothing in these areas.
“In the area of transience – kids moving from school to school – the Government has no policy at all and in the area of
absenteeism or irregular attendance, its policies are soft.
“The Government needs to pursue rigorously those parents who break the law by not ensuring their children attend school
on every day it is open for instruction. If some irresponsible parents end up paying fines, so be it.
“Urgent priority must be given to the development of policies around the issue of transiency.
“As for compulsory education for four year olds, the Minister would get more bangs for his bucks by expanding the HIPPY
programme,” concluded Mr Donnelly.