National MP Gerry Brownlee may have made a decent shadow leader of the House, but he wasn't good when it came to corporal punishment, according to NZ First MP Mark Patterson.
While discussing the proposed new rules around restraint with students during the first reading of Education Minister Chris Hipkins' new bill yesterday, Mr Patterson recalled the "travesty of justice" that occurred when he was a student at Ellesmere College.
"I did famously get the cane once," he revealed.
Mr Patterson says he was fiddling with a screwdriver during a woodworking class when his teacher marched him outside for punishment.
"That woodwork teacher, rather famously, was one Gerry Brownlee," he said, to laughter from the other politicians.
When another MP interjected, claiming Mr Brownlee denies the accusation, Mr Patterson quickly shot back.
"I bet I remember it better than he does!
"He might be a halfway decent shadow leader of the House, but he was ratchet at the cane."
Mr Patterson says the first strike was around the hamstrings, "and I think I can still feel it".
He thought about mentioning the incident in his maiden speech but decided to save it for the future instead, he said.
"They do say revenge is best served cold."
Mr Hipkins' new Education Amendment Bill includes a raft of possible changes, including loosening the rules for teachers using force on children and changing religious instruction to be opt-in.