“The Labour Party must stand up to its teachers' union members and back down on its promise to scrap the partnership schools programme,” Jamie Whyte, ACT Leader-Elect said today.
The PPTA, which funds Labour, has led a determined campaign to close the new schools with recent reports of the possibility of industrial action by its Whangarei members.
“Labour’s policy to close the five partnership schools, which was announced before they even opened and have had a chance to prove themselves, has nothing to do with education and everything to do with a political party being a hostage to its union funders," said Dr Whyte.
“Having attended the opening of Whangarei’s partnership school Te Kura Hourua o Whangarei Terenga Paraoa, I can say that I was impressed. The school has great ethic and is ambitious, not only for their own students, but for all students in mainstream education who, over time, will benefit from the innovation possible in partnership schools.
Dr Whyte urged the teachers' union representatives and the teachers who were being called upon to boycott any involvement with partnership school students to visit the school and see for themselves what it is about.
“I can understand the insecurity expressed by the PPTA, who fear they would lose members when teachers switch from state schools to partnership schools, but this is only a problem for them if they believed that a significant number of parents would choose partnership schools over state schools . They obviously can see merit in partnership schools and that is why they are afraid.
“But the PPTA is a teachers' union and so serves teachers' interests. Teachers should be motivated by what is best for the country’s children, not their own coffers. The union, aided by its mouthpieces Chris Hipkins and David Cunliffe, would cut short the bright opportunity being offered to kiwi kids. It would send these kids trudging back to the very same schools which have failed them for years.
“I have a lot of respect for the skill, dedication, and patience of teachers. Teaching is an honourable profession, which the union should not demean by threatening the education of students with industrial action.
“At the opening of Te Kura Hourua o Whangarei Terenga Paraoa on Saturday morning, one speaker used the analogy of the school being a new baby that needed protection because, as with births in the wild, the wolves were gathering. I urge the teachers of Whangarei not to play the role of rules.
“Partnership schools are a reality, with five now open and making history. They are one of the most exciting innovations in our education system ever.
“Let's give partnership schools and the kids enrolled in them the opportunity to prove themselves.”
The ACT Party is delighted with Saturday's opening of the partnership school Te Kura Hourua o Whangarei Terenga Paraoa.
Whangarei-based ACT Board member Robin Grieve, and Jamie Whyte, ACT Party leader-elect, were pleased to attend the dawn ceremony and opening of Whangarei’s first partnership school, Te Kura Hourua o Whangarei Terenga Paraoa. They were very impressed with what they saw and excited for the future of the school, and for the students who will benefit from this new dawn in State funded New Zealand education.
Partnership schools, an ACT Party initiative, were introduced as a result of the party's coalition agreement with National.
“This is an historic day, students in Whangarei now have another choice when it comes to choosing the best educational option for them,” said Grieve.
“The feedback we have received from people involved in the school is that they love the flexibility of the partnership school model."
Jamie Whyte was thrilled to see first hand the result of the ACT Party’s policy.
“ACT's education policy is focused on lifting life outcomes for all by liberalising the supply of education - allowing for more innovation and variation of what is offered to parents and students, and making it easier for new schools to open and good schools to expand,” said Dr Whyte.
There are two partnership schools operating in Northland and Mr Grieve hopes that with the expansion of the scheme recently announced by the Government, we will receive many more.
“The ACT Party supports the empowerment of the individual through education and believes offering students alternative educational sources is the best way to provide this for more students," said Mr Grieve.
"A good education is the key to better life outcomes and is the answer to addressing issues of poverty, inequality, welfare dependency and crime. ACT wants all children to benefit from an education that provides them the opportunity to live out their aspirations.
"Te Kura Hourua o Whangarei Terenga Paraoa is now open and is doing just that.”
The passing of the third and final reading of the Education Amendment Bill in Parliament this afternoon, paves the way for the first Partnership Schools | Kura Hourua to open at the start of the next school year.
Associate Education Minister John Banks says Partnership Schools | Kura Hourua will improve the life chances of students who are currently being left behind.
“Partnership Schools will have more flexibility in how they operate, allowing them to target disadvantaged students in innovative ways. The schools will be expected to meet strict targets for improving educational outcomes,” Mr Banks says.
“Partnership Schools will provide new opportunities for the education, community and business sectors to work together to raise achievement, and deliver much needed choice for students, parents and whānau.
“We must do more to give all students the opportunity to succeed - especially those from Māori and Pasifika backgrounds, from disadvantaged homes, or with special educational needs, all of whom are not well served by the current system.”
Mr Banks says there have been 35 applications from around the country to run Partnership Schools.
“The Partnership Schools Authorisation Board is carrying out a thorough and robust evaluation process and I am confident all Partnership Schools will be run by organisations of the highest calibre.
“I look forward to the announcement of the successful applicants in the coming weeks. Roll on day one, term one, 2014.”
Almost 25 years ago, Parliament passed the Education Act 1989 which put the Picot report into effect giving us Tomorrow’s Schools.
Parliament wanted to empower educators and school communities. It wanted to de-centralise and liberate the compulsory education sector.
The then Labour Government said the reforms would address the inequality of achievement.
But the unions cried foul.
The unions said that only education experts, not parents, would be able to govern schools – sound familiar?
In fact, the unions said Tomorrow’s Schools was the first step towards privatisation.
That Tomorrow’s Schools was right-wing ideology.
The same arguments that are ringing in our ears today.
The truth is the union opposition to Partnership Schools has been straight out of their old playbook. The same lines they trot out on any attempted reform of the education sector.
It’s tired. It’s cynical. It’s unconvincing. Educators deserve better.
The unions now say our education system is world class and ‘how dare anyone change it’.
Yes it is world class for most learners - but not all.
We have a long tail of underachievement in New Zealand.
And that failure is institutionalised and inter-generational.
It compounds the deep trauma in these families.
It is shocking that any system could take a child though their formative years and, after 13 years in the system, turn out a student who is functionally illiterate - in no way prepared for the modern world.
Partnership Schools can make a real difference to New Zealand’s most disadvantaged students.
We want to give five out of five students the opportunity to get a world class education.
This policy is not an attack on our teachers who by and large do a fantastic job. I acknowledge their contribution.
I also acknowledge the contribution of the 35,000 support staff in our schools, who are so frequently belittled by the Opposition.
No one is saying there is a quick fix. Nor is anyone saying there are not a number of ways to address this institutionalised failure.
Partnership Schools are but one option.
They are a natural progression of the philosophy of Tomorrow’s Schools in that they empower educators and school communities, and up the level of accountability.
Partnership Schools will engage with parents and provide them with meaningful input into their child’s education.
It is one of the most important things that will be measured under the contract.
Educators in Partnership Schools will have the freedom to engage teachers who don’t hold registration with the Teachers Council.
The decision will be based on the needs of the students, as it should be - not a one rule for every school approach.
Partnership Schools will have better Alternative Dispute Resolution systems available to them than in most schools.
Both the Ombudsmen and the Human Rights Commission have been invited to work with the Ministry of Education on this.
Thankfully Parliament was not swayed by the Opposition’s attempts to limit the type of organisation that can be a Partnership School.
Achieving educational improvements and being accountable always mattered more than whether a Partnership School is a run by a trust, charity, business or iwi organisation.
I have good news for the House.
The 35 quality applications received demonstrate that there is significant interest from numerous diverse communities and organisations in establishing Partnership Schools.
Successful applicants will be invited to an interview so the Authorisation Board can explore their vision for the new school in more detail.
Following the conclusion of the interviews, the Board will provide advice to the Minister of Education about which applications to approve.
Partnership Schools will be established in areas that experience significant underachievement, where students are underserved by the current system.
The first school will be opened day one, term one, 2014.
ACT is proud to be associated with Partnership Schools. These schools will stand or fall on their results – as it should be.
I want to thank everyone who has helped support the passage of this bill, and who believe, like ACT, that every child deserves a world class education.
Partnership Schools will help make the promise of a world class education a reality for more of our children, so they can take their place as productive citizens.
Budget 2013 will provide $19 million in contingency funding to establish the first Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua with a focus on accountability and high educational outcomes for New Zealand children.
The initiative will see a small number of schools established, with greater freedom and flexibility to innovate and engage their students in return for stronger accountability for delivering educational results, Associate Education Minister John Banks says.
The schools will have a particular focus on the Government’s priority groups of Māori, Pasifika, children from low socio-economic backgrounds, and children with special education needs.
“This is about raising educational achievement, in particular for those groups of students who have historically been under-served by the system,’’ Mr Banks says.
“We already have a number of different types of schools operating in New Zealand, such as Kura, faith-based schools, single-sex schools, and private schools.
“Partnership Schools are another option, giving parents and students more freedom to choose the type of education that best suits their learning needs.”
The Ministry of Education has received proposals from potential sponsors for Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua. The establishment of the schools is subject to the passage of the Education Amendment Bill 2012. The Bill sets out the legal framework for the schools.
This funding has been put in contingency and will be drawn down once the legislation passes and as decisions are made later in the year.
Fact File - Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua
- Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua are a new way of delivering public education which will bring together the education, business, and community sectors to provide new opportunities for students to achieve education success.
- Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua are fully-funded schools outside the state system, accountable to the Crown for raising achievement through a contract to deliver a range of specified school-level targets.
- The most fundamental difference between Partnership Schools/ Kura Hourua and state or state-integrated schools is that their relationship with the Ministry of Education will be contractual as well as regulatory.
- Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua will have more freedom over how they operate, so they can innovate to better meet the needs of their students, and achieve their targets. This includes greater flexibility over curriculum, staff qualifications, employment, hours of operation, and school leadership.
- Partnership Schools/Kura Hourua will be in areas where learners are currently underserved by existing education provision, and will be open to all students who apply for entry, regardless of background or ability.
- They will have no tuition fees.
Achievement and other performance expectations specified in the contract, and monitored through a combination of the Education Review Office and the specially appointed Authorisation Board, will use National Standards and other recognised measures set out in a performance measurement framework.
If the Government were to listen to the PPTA and the results of their clearly biased survey questions it would be the end of the PPTA and the education system in New Zealand.
The PPTA want to take ‘for profit’ organisations out of the New Zealand education system.
This would mean the immediate closure of more than 1900 Licenced Early Childhood Education (ECE) centres and would affect more than 80,000 children. The PPTA profits from education, so it is advocating against itself.
The PPTA wants everyone who is not fully registered with the New Zealand Teachers Council (NZTC) out of our education system.
If the Government were to listen and therefore exclude teachers who are newly-arrived from overseas or are otherwise not fully registered with the NZTC volunteers, support staff, private tutors, and informal tuition by hard working and dedicated parents, siblings and family friends, every education institution would immediately grind to a halt and most could not continue to exist. This too would result in an end to the PPTA.
The PPTA are against Partnership Schools because of the for-profit, teacher registration aspects of the policy, but these features are already part of the current education sector. Removing these features from education would have a detrimental impact on the sector as we know it and students would suffer.
The PPTA also likes to claim that the majority of submissions on the Education Amendment Bill were opposed to Partnership Schools. But, the vast majority of the submissions received by the Education and Science Select Committee received were 'form submissions' from the PPTA, NZEI and their Union affiliates. Excluding these left a balanced pool of properly considered submissions.
Partnership schools, known overseas as charter schools or free schools, are not an experiment. Evidence has shown that the best models of charter/free schools have been very successful in raising achievement for students from disadvantaged areas and those with English as a second language. They were first started 20 years ago in the United States by... you guessed it... the teachers unions.
The PPTA is clearly not much concerned about poor educational outcomes from failing public schools. It is not plausible that it is terrified that some partnership schools might fail; it is more plausible that it is terrified that greater parental choice might improve outcomes.
The PPTA survey can be found here
NZEI National President Judith Nowotarski seems to be confused.
In a press release today (here), she has used the words ‘irresponsible and reckless’ to describe education where for-profit organisations can employ a percentage of fully registered teachers and are not subject to the Official Information Act (OIA).
What she has described is the Early Childhood Education (ECE) sector she works in.
Around 43% of ECE centres are run by for-profits, only a percentage of teachers need to be registered and these are not Crown Entities so are not subject to the OIA.
Is she saying the for-profit ECE centres are inferior?
Does she not value the contribution of the ECE teachers who are not fully registered?
Does she want ECE centres to be subject to the OIA?
I rise to speak in favour of the second reading of the Education Amendment Bill.
The Bill provides the legal framework for Partnerships Schools | Kura Hourua.
I want to join with the Hon Hekia Parata in thanking Dr Cam Calder the Chair of the Education and Science Committee and the members of the Committee for their hard work.
They have improved the Bill. The first change is to require the existing independent review option to now be a mandatory term of all sponsorship contracts.
I can advise the House that officials are working on some default dispute resolution options that will be focused on the educational needs of the student. These will be superior to arrangements in most state schools.
The second change is a partial extension of the jurisdiction of the Ombudsmen to suspensions, stand-downs, exclusions and expulsions. This change both protects the students and ensures sponsors who are non-government organisations have their status preserved.
I want to acknowledge all those who took the time to make a submission to the Committee. Even when we disagree, I know that our education system can only improve with the passionate engagement of learners, parents and educational professionals.
This Bill as it relates to Partnership Schools is drawn from a proposal in the ACT and National Confidence and Supply Agreement. That proposal was given life by the Partnership Schools Working Party ably led by Catherine Isaac whose work shaped this Bill.
Partnership schools spring from the values of the ACT Party. In education we believe in parental choice and the funding following the child whatever the school type.
We know that in education, one size does not fit all.
In essence we believe in the transformative potential of education.
That is why we backed Aspire Scholarships last term and why we promoted Partnership Schools this term.
Every child has potential however humble their origins.
Every child has inherent value.
And every child deserves the opportunity to get a world class education.
No member in their heart-of-hearts can say that New Zealand is delivering on that.
So this Bill is important. It will determine whether this House is on the right side of history.
I believe we will stand with young Māori and Pasifika who deserve to discover the spark of learning.
We will stand with those with learning difficulties or from low socio-economic backgrounds who yearn to achieve.
We will stand with the dedicated educators including Māori and Pasifika educators who are able to inspire and lead and achieve for our most vulnerable learners.
We will stand with the proposition that greater freedom to educators should be coupled with higher levels of accountability.
Partnership Schoolswill help to address the endemic problem of underachievement of our most vulnerable leaners.
The good news is that the current education system works well for the majority of our young people. Our best students are best in the world.
There is more good news. There have been significant recent gains for Pasifika students and slight gains for Māori.
The bad news is that still too many of our vulnerable students are being left behind. In terms of equity, which is the size of the gap between our highest and lowest achievers, we are among the worst of OECD countries.
The good news is that Partnership Schools are on the way.
Being a first world nation means five out of five students gaining the knowledge and skills to be successful citizens in the 21st Century.
This country has huge potential. However we waste that potential because of the continuing disparity that characterises our education system.
Partnership Schools will help target the problem of underachievement.
In the Partnership School model, the Crown enters into a contract with a sponsor, who operates the school.
Sponsors vary from school to school and could be, for example, groups of parents, not-for-profit community groups, businesses, churches, Iwi or Pasifika groups, or Trusts.
The term ‘partnership’ captures the essence of what these schools represent – a partnership between the Crown, the business sector and the community.
They will introduce more choice, and more flexibility, into our education system.
More choice for parents – who will have greater freedom to choose the education that best suits their children’s learning needs.
And more flexibility – as Partnership Schools will have greater freedom around how they operate.
They will be given more autonomy from the usual rules and regulations under which state schools are required to operate.
This includes the freedom to offer a different curriculum so long as it can be mapped against the New Zealand curriculum and its principles and qualifications framework, and adaptable operating hours.
They must employ teachers who are trained and qualified in their fields, but they may, in certain, limited circumstances, be teachers who are not registered with the Teachers’ Council.
This flexibility will allow them to do things differently. They will be allowed to use new and diverse approaches to teaching and learning, and property and school organisation.
They can focus on specialist areas of learning, such as art, music or sport, and they can answer a particular need in their community, such as for faith-based schooling or holistic development.
In exchange for this flexibility, Partnership Schools will have higher levels of accountability with a unique evaluation framework.
I’m pleased to advise the House that we have received 35 applications from potential sponsors for Partnership Schools.
They are currently being considered by the Authorisation Board, an expert panel of independent advisors.
The Authorisation Board will make recommendations to the Minister of Education.
No final decisions will be made, or contracts with potential sponsors entered into, until this Bill is passed. Contracts are expected to be in place by the middle of this year.
This ensures successful sponsors have enough time to prepare their schools to open in 2014.
Can I once again express my appreciation for the work of the Select Committee. Can I also place on record my appreciation for the support of the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the Minister of Education and the Maori Party for Partnership Schools.
Roll on day 1 term 1 2014
The Green Party continued with their campaign to deliberately mislead the public about Partnership Schools | Kura Hourua, with Metiria Turei's claim today that the policy will create an elitist education system.
It’s hard to comprehend how anyone could say this with a straight face.
Partnership Schools are specifically targeted at students from low-socio economic areas. They cannot charge fees. They cannot cherry pick students. If they are over-subscribed they will hold a ballot.
The current state school system sees many students from low-income families locked out of the best state schools simply because they can’t afford to live in the right area. Far from being elitist, Partnership Schools will be more inclusive than current state schools.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Welcome to ACT’s regional conference for the lower South Island. I acknowledge ACT Scenic South board member, Guy McCallum and deputy board member Colin Nicholls and I thank you both for your efforts in organising this conference today.
I also acknowledge and thank ACT Leader John Banks for his attendance.
When Guy first asked me to speak on the subject of ‘why I support ACT’, I thought that’s easy. ACT has been the only party in New Zealand that has constantly elected into Parliament a group of MPs who all agree on free trade, the Reserve Bank Act, flexible labour laws, the importance of private property rights, one law for all and the rule of law.
There are many reasons to support ACT.
However, the focus of my speech today will be Partnership schools and the announcement yesterday about the establishment of the Partnership Schools Authorisation Board by John Banks in his role as Associate Education Minister.
At last week’s national conference in Auckland, I stressed the need to rejuvenate and rebuild ACT. We need to take our message directly to ordinary kiwis by direct mail, social media and public meetings. I mentioned that I first joined ACT at such a public meeting in May 1995.
However, what I didn’t mention were the two significant events prior.
Firstly, in February 1995, I sent away a cheque for $5 for a copy of ACT’s founding document – the 100 page ‘Commonsense for a Change’. This laid out ACT’s policy prescription and I could immediately see that ACT was a new kind of party offering new solutions to the country’s problems and was unlike any other political party at the time.
In particular, I was attracted to ACT’s proposals to have people paying part of their taxes directly into their own retirement savings accounts, rather than as general taxation - making them less dependent on the government at retirement age.
ACT also proposed providing greater choice in education by allowing alternative independent schools to establish and compete on an equal footing with the state education system – thus driving up standards for all through competition.
Secondly, in March 1995, I attended a public meeting – the first ACT meeting I ever attended. It was at the property now known as the ASB Showgrounds in Greenlane, Auckland and there were close to 1000 people.
The featured speakers were the joint ACT founders, Sir Roger Douglas and the Hon. Derek Quigley. I also heard for the first time, Rodney Hide and Muriel Newman – both of whom went on to become ACT MPs.
However, the speakers who left the biggest impression on me that night were Donna Awatere-Huata and Iritana Tawhiwhirangi – founder of the Kohanga Reo movement in the early 1980s and ACT’s first Education spokesperson.
Iritana, now Dame Iritana, gave an inspired, uplifting speech as she explained how ACT’s policies to provide greater choice to parents, particularly those from lower socio-economic areas who didn’t then have choice, would do more to address Maori under-achievement in education than any other single policy change.
Educational under-achievement was leaving vast numbers of Maori marginalised and unable to read and write. Far too many were ending up in prison. Under-achievement also lead to disproportionate numbers of Maori and Pacific Islanders becoming dependent on social welfare and robbing them of their independence, their spirit and their lives.
She explained how those from lower socio-economic areas lacked the resources that more affluent parents had, to send their children to private schools. School zoning captured young Maori in poorer performing state schools.
I was so impressed with Dame Iri’s speech that I went up and introduced myself to her during the break. Over time, we became friends and we have spent hours since, discussing educational and social issues for Maori and other New Zealanders.
With the founding of the Maori Party, Dame Iri became a member and subsequently stood for them in general elections on their party list.
While ACT has clear policy differences with the Maori Party in some areas – for example we opposed the Marine and Coastal Area Bill and we don’t support separate Maori seats in Parliament – we still have much we agree on, such as providing choice in education as a means of raising educational achievement for ALL, but particularly for those in lower socio-economic groups.
The Maori Party and ACT also recognise the huge damage the social welfare system has done to Maori and the way it has created a system of dependency and a feeling of entitlement.
So I was absolutely delighted that when John Banks announced the members of the Partnership Schools Authorisation Committee on Friday, Dame Iritana was among them alongside Chair Catherine Isaac, Deputy Chair John Shewan, John Morris, Dr Margaret Southwick, Tahu Potiki and Terry Bates.
Finally, 18 years after Dame Iri stood and addressed that crowded ACT public meeting in Greenlane, she will have the opportunity to bring to fruition the vision that she saw and so strongly advocated that night and ever since.
It was also pleasing this week to see that Pem Bird, President of the Maori Party also appeared before the Education and Science Select Committee to speak in favour of partnership schools.
There has been much misinformation about Partnership Schools – much of it spread by the teacher unions in a newspaper campaign that must have cost their members hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Far from being the ‘rich party’ portrayed by the media, the ACT party doesn’t have the resources to combat it.
The first and most important thing to know about Partnership Schools is they will not be compulsory – no parent will be required to send their child to one.
It will be THEIR choice, and for a lot of parents they will actually have a choice for the first time!
However, those who choose not to send their children to a Partnership School, will have the benefit of a higher standard of education that ACT believes will eventuate as a result of competition. So everyone will win.
Secondly, Partnership Schools will be designed to primarily serve lower socio-economic areas.
Thirdly, Partnership Schools will be funded by the state, largely to the same extent that the taxpayer would fund the same child in a state school – the funding will follow the child as ACT has advocated since its inception in 1994.
Fourthly, Partnership Schools will be closely monitored by the Department of Education – far from being unaccountable as our opponents argue. Partnership schools will be bound by an agreement entered into between the state and the schools’ founders and they will be required to meet the standards jointly agreed.
Fifthly, ACT’s partnership schools will not be subject to the Official Information Act as they are run by private organisations in exactly the same way that many thousands of privately run early childhood centres who receive Government funding are not subject to the Official Information Act.
Sixth, the Labour Party has argued that private enterprise or for-profit organisations will be involved and that this is somehow a bad thing! Yes, it’s true, that private for-profit organisations may wish to be involved but why is that deemed bad? And how is that different from the many thousands of privately owned early childhood centres that have opened and been funded by the taxpayer to provide 20 hours of early childhood education?
Labour is quite happy for profit organisations to operate early childhood education but not primary and secondary schools – how hypocritical is that?
In any event, my understanding is that none of the 34 initial preliminary applications received are from for-profit organisations, albeit that overseas research shows that for-profits run the most successful schools.
Seventh, there is overwhelming overseas evidence that properly monitored charter schools, as they are known overseas have been very successful, despite the opposition’s efforts to argue otherwise.
Sweden for example introduced ‘free schools’, their version of partnership schools in 1992 and they continue successfully to this day under both ‘right’ and ‘left’ wing governments. If Labour’s claim that Partnership Schools hadn’t been successful overseas is correct, surely an incoming left-wing Swedish government would have scrapped them and they haven’t.
Eighth, Partnership Schools will have more autonomy than state schools – there will be no regulated pay scales nor set hours. They will not be required to have all of their teachers registered with the Teachers Council, however you don’t need to be registered to be qualified. I personally have a world of business experience. I taught accounting briefly at the then Manukau Technical Institute and I wasn’t registered with the Teachers Council.
Delegates, for the last 18 years the ACT Party has championed reforms to education and social welfare systems. The ACT Party has stood up for the less well-off and campaigned on providing choice for those who don’t have choice. We don’t expect there will be a large number of Partnership Schools initially, but we are optimistic that a sufficient number will open at the beginning of Term 1, 2014.
While there may not be many, the fact that there are some will lead to competition between those first Partnership Schools and the surrounding state schools and we expect the benefits will only grow as time progresses.
Each week the Opposition parties stand up in Parliament and claim to represent the poor.
The first step out of poverty is a top quality education and if the opposition were truly concerned for the poor and the less well off, rather than their Teacher Union mates, they’d support us and the vote in Parliament would be unanimous.
Partnership Schools are a fundamental part of our Confidence and Supply Agreement with the National Party and from my discussions negotiating that agreement with the Prime Minister and since, I am sure we have his full support.
Like Dame Iritana Tawhiwhirangi, I look forward to ACT implementing the vision that she and Donna Awatere-Huata so ably enunciated in March 1995.
Thank you for your attendance here today.