The outgoing Secretary of Education must not be the scapegoat for the Education Minister who should be stood down after one of the most destructive years in New Zealand education, the Green Party said today.
"The Green Party welcomes a new broom at the Education Ministry as a year of blunders, which put huge stress on kids, families and teachers, comes to an end," Green Party co leader Metiria Turei said.
"But Lesley Longstone's departure must not come at the expense of the Minister taking responsibility for overseeing this mess.
"The Government needed someone to take the blame for all of Hekia Parata's stuff ups as Minister and Lesley Longstone looks like she is its woman.
"Though Ms Longstone was always compromised by her professional investment in charter schools, it must have been incredibly difficult working for a Minister who didn't communicate, and blamed Ms Longstone for her own failures.
"From the class sizes debacle, to the latest report showing that consultation over the Christchurch school closures had been a sham, this Minster has overseen a massively destructive year in education and must go.
"Kids, especially those in Christchurch, need a fresh start next year with a new Minister who will put their needs at the centre of their decision making, and a Ministry that will engage properly over real educational renewal in Canterbury," Mrs Turei said.