Press Release – ACT New Zealand
31 May 2013
The Week That Was
Food in Schools
This week National announced its food in schools programme to provide breakfasts to decile one to four schools who want it.
No one wants a child to go to school hungry. However, ACT disagrees with National’s policy as it goes against one of our fundamental principles – personal responsibility.
ACT believes it is the responsibility of parents to ensure their children are fed, clothed and cared for. It is not the role of the state to put food on the table, and National’s decision to take on that role will have long-term and negative consequences.
The Government currently pays $16.2 billion dollars per annum in welfare. Parents and low-income households with children already receive additional financial support. Throwing more money at a symptom is just a band-aid that won’t fix the real problem, especially when evidence has shown that food in schools programmes do not work.
An Auckland study on food in schools programmes found:
“ a free school breakfast did not have a significant effect on New Zealand children’s school attendance, academic achievement, self-reported grades, sense of belonging at school, behaviour or food security.”’
University of Canterbury economic lecturer Eric Crampton found:
“providing breakfast in schools ‘has not increased the likelihood of kids eating breakfast at all’ and that ‘many kids shifted from eating breakfast at home earlier in the morning to eating at school later in the morning.’
Read his blog here or listen to Eric’s radio interview here
Rather than create a new welfare scheme, ACT believes we should be looking at why kids are going to school hungry in the first place. Once we know why, we can then look closely at the assistance already in place and start dealing with the cause of the problem.
Yesterday, the Partnership School legislation passed the committee stage. The third reading will be held on Tuesday, June 7th after 7.30pm and should pass into law.
Last night Campbell Live provided an insight into the type of organisations that have applied to open a Partnership School.
All of the applicants are driven by a desire to stop young people failing
You can watch the clip here
In case you missed it:
Blog: Three Strikes Keeping Repeat Violent Offenders Off our Streets (click here)
PR: Schoolyard Bully Tag Undermines Serious Violent Crime (click here)
More on Partnership Schools
PR by Te Maru o Nga Kura a Iwo o Aotearoa – Protest against Charter Schools Hypocritical (click here)
Watch John Banks on Firstline this morning chatting about the policy (click here)