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School Trustees Association must explain rogue actions

There are serious questions about the rogue actions of the School Trustees Association which is taking controversial stances without the mandate of its members, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.

“Labour welcomes the Association withdrawing its submission against paid parental leave extensions after it became clear it had failed to consult any of its school boards about its stance.

“The majority of parents support Labour’s proposal to extend these entitlements to 26 weeks and school boards are mainly made up of parents.

“They also support looking at what lessons can be learned for state schools from a report into charter schools, which highlights the removal of parent and community membership on school boards.

“What kind of membership organisation advocates for policies that go against the interests of their own members and could ultimately remove the need for their own existence?

“The Association receives millions of dollars in taxpayer funding a year to represent school boards yet is failing to do its most fundamental duty – represent those boards.

“That money should be spent supporting and listening to the elected parents and community members on school boards, rather than flag waving for the National Party on issues such as extending parental leave and charter schools,” Chris Hipkins says.