Wednesday, June 1, 2011

20 hours free ECE faces the chop

Sue Moroney has this to say. (Media Release 1 June)
 The benefits of 20 hours free ECE will go and parents will face higher fees if the ECE Taskforce’s funding recommendations are implemented, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Sue Moroney.

Sue Moroney says the report recommends taking the fee controls off 20 hours ECE and argues that parents and employers should pay more of the funding for early childhood education.

“From the time that the Minister ordered the taskforce to stay within current funding but increase the number of children using the service, the taskforce was in a no-win situation,” Sue Moroney said.

“It’s a great shame, because the taskforce report clearly sets out why early childhood education should be a top priority for Government funding and has many excellent features to it.

“However, the National Government’s insistence that they see it as a cost, not an investment, means that the taskforce has ended up recommending some backward measures,” Sue Moroney said.

“This has also been reflected in the taskforce’s desire to fund 100 per cent qualified teachers, although it has ended up recommending only a subsidy towards this.

“This will unfortunately lead to further inequality as the report says ‘wealthier parents’ should be prepared to meet some of the cost of early childhood education, which includes some of the cost of a higher-quality workforce,” Sue Moroney said.

“This means that low and middle-income will get lower-quality education and this won’t fix the problem created by National’s funding cuts to ECE.”

No comments: