“The $12 million hand out to a ‘Green’ private school shows the Green Party doesn’t follow its principles, but the deal must now be reversed just as Labour brutally crushed the hopes of charter schools for disadvantaged students,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“Labour Ministers have artlessly parroted that they can’t reverse the deal, well they never showed this kind of principle to the principals of charter schools. They just bullied them out of their 18 year contracts without consultation.
“Chris Hipkins and Grant Robertson need to start taking responsibility. Cabinet has Collective Responsibility where all of Cabinet is responsible for what it signs off on. James Shaw is not a member of Cabinet, but Cabinet must have signed it off. Did they do it with a wry smile, realising Shaw was politically mutilating himself?
“Charter school contracts required at least 75 per cent of their students to be Māori, Pacific, special learning needs, or low socio economic status students. How can the Government be prepared to terminate a deal for the most disadvantaged students but not for those at a $24,000 per year independent school?
“Cancelling the deal would not even take anything from the school that it didn’t already have. That is in stark contrast to the effect of bullying charter schools out of their contracts with the Crown.
“Cancelling charter school contracts ended their autonomy and has seriously damaged their operations. One that was growing rapidly as a charter school has had its roll reduce by two thirds since being forced to operate as a designated Character School.
“If this Government can terminate contracts for schools that had operated for three years, why can it not cancel a single handout nobody knew about until three days ago.