Turia disagrees with feeding children in schools policy

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(Radio NZ) TarianaTuriaParliaMaori Party MPs are vowing to support Hone Harawira’s ‘Feed the Kids Bill’, even though co-leader Tariana Turia is putting forward a different solution to the problem.

The Education Amendment (Breakfast and Lunch Programmes in Schools) Bill, dubbed the ‘Feed the Kids Bill’, supports a national programme for fully state-funded food in all low decile schools.

Mr Harawira, the leader of the Mana party, wants all decile one and two schools to have funding so they can provide breakfast and lunches to students.

The first reading of the bill has been delayed until 10 July.

Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia says she doesn’t agree with state intervention to feed children in schools.

However, she says the Government should be looking at people’s incomes to ensure they have got enough to live on and it needs to build whanau capability, so families look after themselves.

Mrs Turia says she is not a supporter of people outside of the family feeding children.

Copyright 2013, Radio New Zealand

6 COMMENTS

  1. Not all Decile 1 schools need this service! We are a D1 Urban Composite Bi-Lingual School in Whanganui and while a small proportion of tamariki genuinely require support for ‘Breakfast in Schools” program a majority don’t. What has happened is tamariki that normally ate breakfast at home now come to kura to have it because it is available and they get more ‘in bed’ time. My class was given the option of making a decision on all available information outlining the pros and cons of the program including ‘Fruit in Schools’ The class agreed to support the program because a small number of tamariki personally connected to members of the class showed the rest that there was a need to feed tamariki they knew, so the entire class went along with the process. As for the ‘Fruit in Schools’ program we have experienced a fair bit of wasteage due to too much fruit for too few tamariki. Now I see we will be introducing a ‘Milk in Schools’ program; 30% of my class are milk intolerant and no doubt without proper investigation and data gathering for this new Govt program we will probably experience further waste. The biggest waste however is our unintentional need to become more dependant on handouts by Govt so they might remain in power. National Standards are benchmarks to ensure the nations children will be highly competent in Language, Maths, Science etc for no jobs when they finish school, no real qualification to enter university. Why not create National Standards to gain skills that could at least feed themselves and maybe create a humble income to put food on the table by caring for the environment, nurturing the land, grow their own kai to feed their families themselves. Our people were communal and co-operative people. Help them to better utilise their lands to create their own wealth or am I really so far away from reality that we have totally convinced ourselves and future generations that we are worth very little or even worse nothing.

  2. Two great ideas. Heres a third. Why not implement both. Short term kids are fed, long term sustainability solutions can be worked on. Then when making progress phase out the -feed the kids bill- Im assuming that all children regardless of race would be allowed to eat. What surprises me most is why are these ideas not being worked on collectively, whats wrong with working together. This is a fine example, two great ideas vying for top place. Get it together guys.

  3. I totally agree with Hone feed the kids at low decile school. this will ensure that at least the children will be fed. Tariana mentions giving the parents more income, does she mean raising welfare benefits , or raising the wage to a livable income for the working class people if its raising the wage then i support her, However I do not support raising welfare payouts a lot of beneficiaries already receive a weekly benefit that is already double to what the ordinary worker gets in his take home pay. Tariana needs to get of her comfy seat and face reality. go sit outside the bottle stores and pokie outlets on benefit days. she may learn something.

    • Yes wages should be higher. And if Turia really supported that she wouldn’t be in coalition with National. But you are wrong to claim “a lot of beneficiaries already receive a weekly benefit that is already double to what the ordinary worker gets in his take home pay”. The standard benefit is around $200 per adult. Even a part time worker should be getting more than that. It’s true that the costs associated with working, like transport can mean you are no better off working a low wage job, especially if you have a partner to support, but the solution to that particular problem is higher wages and perhaps a universal basic income for all.

  4. The parents of these children need help with spiritual, financial and parental skills. The children are starving while you/government is deciding whether they are worth caring for. Both issues need to be addressed. My suggestion is simple, feed the kids at school while the parents are given the compulsory opportunity to gain spiritual, financial confidence and parenting skills. You cannot do one without the other…

    • I think firstly employment, whilst the govt feed the children, they make enough money from taxes on alcohol and tobacco. what you mean by spiritual are you talking maori spiritual or God spiritual, what needs to be done is to lift up the spirits of the under privileged and give them a sense of belonging and a sense of pride

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