The National Government’s decision to merge Phillipstown and Woolston
schools is another disaster for Christchurch and proves this Government is
more interested in saving face than in what is best for children, the Green
Party said today.
“Hekia Parata’s stubborn refusal to budge on her closure plans is a
tragedy for the children who fought so desperately for their school to remain
open,” Green Party education spokesperson Catherine Delahunty said.
“This is about Hekia Parata trying to save face after a litany of
back-downs, U-turns and policy failures, but it’s come at the expense of
hundreds of little children and their families.
“The children of Christchurch have become a scapegoat for Hekia Parata’s
“Even in the last few days, evidence has emerged that the second round of
consultation over the closure plans has not been fair, or accurate.
“This is not a ‘new decision’, as the Minister claims. She went in to
this second so-called consultation process with her eyes closed and her mind
“From the very beginning Hekia Parata lost sight of what was the best
decision for the children of Christchurch and has set out to use the
earthquakes to reinforce her hard right agenda to damage and dismantle public
“If she had really listened, and engaged in proper consultation from the
beginning, the children of Phillipstown and Woolston would have had some
certainty, instead many have found themselves fighting the very person who
should have been working in their interests.
“The Green Party stands with the communities of Phillipstown and Woolston
and wishes them well in their attempts to do what’s best for their kids,”
Ms Delahunty said.