INDEPENDENT NEWS

Mallard Couldn't Run A Bath Let Alone Education

Published: Wed 8 Aug 2001 04:49 PM
Mallard Couldn't Run A Bath Let Alone The Education System
Trevor Mallard couldn't run a bath without first forming a committee, and schools are tiring of his endless statistics that point out the obvious, National's Education spokesperson Gerry Brownlee said today.
"In the House today he went on and on about how wonderful the Government is for launching another pilot programme aimed at improving numeracy among our school children and conceded New Zealand ranked poorly alongside OECD countries in this area.
"But the Minister's initiatives are timid. PTAs all around the country, such as Allenton School PTA in Ashburton, are saying it's impossible to improve reading, writing and numeracy levels when there are fewer resources supplied to schools to support essential learning programmes.
"What's more, there is increasing concern about schools having to find most of their own numeracy material which will ultimately limit the supply of essential literacy resources.
"The Minister continues to waste time talking about reports, committees and pilot programmes as well as literacy and numeracy survey results but schools know only too well what the problems are and desperately just want action.
"National had a clear-cut commitment to ensure that 'every child could read, write and do maths for success by age nine''. It gave primary schools resources and direction to put the focus on the basics.
"Trevor Mallard is still trying to arrive at conclusions that the rest of us made years ago. He needs to stop floundering and make a decent funding commitment.
"The Government has just found an extra $35 million for tertiary education, but the focus now needs to go on our primary school children's learning needs before it's too late," Mr Brownlee said.
Ends

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