“A new report by the Children’s Convention Monitoring Group reinforces the fact that the Government must consider the views of children before closing charter schools”, says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“‘Getting It Right: Building Blocks‘ focuses on the factors that are needed for childrens’ success, including supporting their participation in decisions that affect them.
“Will Jacinda Ardern and Chris Hipkins take the advice of these experts and listen to the kids?
“The final report by Martin Jenkins on charter schools shows exactly why the Government must consider the views of students before proceeding further.
“Partnership schools are strongly focused on disadvantaged kids with complex needs. Students are largely Maori and Pasifika from low-decile schools. Before attending the Partnership Schools, many students were transient, disengaged, with poor academic histories and complex socio-economic needs. They often lacked positive aspirations and role models.
“The schools are meeting learners’ needs using innovative practices and high-quality standards. Sponsors are driven by a vision to provide an alternative for students who have been underserved. Innovations enabled by the flexible funding model are across the board, in governance arrangements, staffing, student engagement and support, pedagogy, teaching and learning.
“Student engagement has significantly improved. Stand-downs and length of suspensions are lower. Students give positive feedback. Whānau feel more involved and more confident communicating with schools. Very few learners are opting out.
“It simply beggars belief that Jacinda Ardern and Chris Hipkins would end an educational model that has delivered so much for students that have been so poorly served by our state system without consulting with those children.
“I challenge the Prime Minister to meet with the disadvantaged children whose schools she is trying to shut down and listen to what they have to say”, says Mr Seymour.