Seymour appointment green light for failing charter schools

Appointing ACT’s David Seymour as Parliamentary Under Secretary to the Education Minister will mean taxpayers picking up an even bigger bill for the Government’s failing charter schools experiment, the Green Party said today.

“David Seymour’s appointment shows the Government’s clear commitment to a privatisation agenda in education,” said Green Party education spokesperson Catherine Delahunty.

“ACT has made no secret of its belief that the private sector should take over the public education system.

“The ACT-National agreement announced today commits even more resources to charter schools, despite signs showing they are not working in New Zealand.

“It is irresponsible to open up more of these expensive schools when there’s no evidence they work, and when no one wants them apart from the Act and National Parties and a handful of groups who want to own their own school.

“Expansion will mean our kids pay the price of a compromised public school system.

“Meanwhile more public money will be required to prop up the schools when they fail.”

As a Parliamentary Under Secretary, David Seymour will not be subject to the usual accountability checks such as the Official Information Act, oral questions in the House or written parliamentary questions.

“David Seymour will effectively be able to push this failing ideology from behind the scenes with limited accountability,” said Ms Delahunty.

“Carving off swathes of the public education sector to give to private organisations, and then spending disproportionate amounts of money on them, is not the answer to improving education in New Zealand.

“We should instead be strengthening the public system so it works for all children.

“Charter schools have no place in New Zealand.”

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