Charter schools legislation wants to work with Māori charter schools
The Education Amendment Bill will abolish charter schools, but the Education Minister Chris Hipkins says under the proposed legislation governance won't be an issue.
“One of the things that we've already signalled with the bill that we introduced to parliament this week is a move around the governance arrangements for designated charter schools - making that more flexible.”
Charter Schools are autonomist and free to set their own curriculums and National leader Bill English says they have every right to be concerned about their future.
“Particularly the Māori kids - where is the manaakitanga that was talked about at Waitangi when you're going to close these schools which deal significantly with groups of Māori students who don't fit into the normal system, have not done well and loved going to these schools?”
Despite being the former chief executive of the Manukau Urban Māori Authority, which owns a charter school, Labour Minister Willie Jackson supports the government's bill.
“I kōrero ahau ki a Chris Hipkins he nui te whakapono i tēnei wā. I roto i tana kōrero, ēngari kāre e tika mōku ki te kōrero e pā ana ki tana rautaki i tēnei wā.”
Hipkins also adds that although changes will happen, they along with the bill will work with Māori charter schools to accommodate needs.
“For the Māori education providers, in particular, there is a real desire to have a bit more of a by Māori for Māori focus, and we certainly want to see how we can accommodate that better within the public education system.”
So will Māori students do better under the government's amendment to the legislation?
Only time will tell.