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National has a series of goals for 2011.  Firstly, we will be lifting real long-term economic growth, because only a strong economy can provide financial security for families, opportunity for young people, safer communities, and world-class education, health and social services.

We are focused on improving children’s progress in reading, writing, and maths with National Standards, and making sure that young people get the education and skills they need to succeed.

National is taking action on violent crime and addressing the causes of crime to make families feel safer in their homes and communities.

And we are going to deliver better public services for all Kiwis by cutting bureaucracy and shifting resources from the back office to the frontline, to deliver the high-quality health and social services that all New Zealanders deserve.

It’s going to be a busy year.

There is a lot of emotion around National Standards in education at present.  Putting this aside, the two issues vexing the teachers are i) the Standards need to be trialled, and ii) the Standards will result in the creation of league tables.

In regard to the first point, schools do not have to report any National Standards data until 2012.  This ‘bedding in’ period will allow for fine-tuning the system – in essence, a trial period.

The second point is one that has only been raised by the teacher unions and the media.  It is a point that teachers need to provide alternative solutions for, rather than using it to dismiss the Standards out of hand.  It was never the Government’s intention to create league tables.

Currently, one in five New Zealand children are leaving our schools without the literacy and numeracy skills they need.

National Standards are one way of ensuring this does not continue.

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You can contact me either by email me here, phone my electorate office on 218 7749, or call in to 97 Dee Street Invercargill (opposite Waxy O'Shea's).

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Authorised by Eric Roy, 97 Dee St, Invercargill

July 2018
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