Charter schools a huge distraction that aren't helping Māori

10 May 2017

NZEI Te Riu Roa is calling for an end to the charter school experiment, and for all political parties to meet with education experts and agree on what's needed to improve education for all Māori and Pasifika children.

Charter schools are in the spotlight as politicians debate the future of existing schools, and whether they're better for Māori, but NZEI Te Riu Roa is describing that as a huge distraction.

"Charter schools are an experiment that's been inflicted mainly on a small group of Māori and Pasifika children, and which does nothing to fix the long-term political failure to improve education for these children," said Laures Park, NZEI Te Riu Roa Matua Takawaenga.

"More than 85 percent of Māori tamariki go to mainstream public schools. It's a cop out for the Government to present charter schools as a solution for Māori, while failing to adequately resource the schools that the vast majority of Māori attend.

"Māori and Pasifika children will continue to be let down by governments until politicians from all parties sit down with the experts and agree to do what's needed to improve education for all our tamariki.

"NZEI Te Riu Roa is offering to facilitate a cross-education, pan-political forum to agree on a long term solution. Our tamariki don't deserve experiments, they deserve education that works for them.

"There is no credible evidence that charter schools are better for Māori than kura kaupapa or mainstream public schools, where the majority of Māori children are learning," Ms Park said.

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