Principals back food in schools bill
Wed, 23 Jan 2013 5:24a.m.
The Principals' Federation is throwing its support behind Mana leader Hone Harawira's bill to provide food in low-decile schools.
Mr Harawira's Education (Breakfast and Lunch Programmes in Schools) Amendment Bill is yet to have its first reading after being introduced to Parliament in November.
It proposes to introduce state-funded breakfast and lunch programmes into all decile 1 and 2 schools, and other designated schools.
The bill is likely to be debated for the first time in February and the Principals' Federation has just announced its support.
"It is now a well-established fact that that at least 200,000 children in New Zealand are living below the poverty line. The upshot of this is that these children start the day without adequate breakfast," president Philip Harding says.
The federation is urging all school principals to support Mr Harawira's bill.
It wants Government agencies to provide substantial breakfast meals to all low-decile schools and resource a paid worker to co-ordinate each school's food programme.
Last year, the Children's Commissioner's expert advisory group on solutions to child poverty and Child Poverty Action Group also lent their support to the bill.
A report from the advisory group, released in December, said: "KidsCan, Fonterra and Sanitarium currently provide food in some schools but we believe that central Government has a responsibility to provide leadership and resources to assist schools through a national strategy for food in [early childhood education centres] and schools in low-decile neighbourhoods."
The Government did not comment on food in schools in its response to the report.
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28/01/2013 8:18:38 a.m.
Some debates involve more thinking and less finger pointing Eddie.The problem with conveniently bundling up the poor and labeling them all as over-breeding drunkards who shouldn't smoke so much, is you're misguided in bashing the poor and it's not going to get their vote come 2014.It's also the laziest way to approach this problem. Villainize those affected and then just push their issue to one side like its been dealt with. You're barely hiding your contempt of those on or below the poverty line. This approach is what brought down Mitt Romney's election campaign last year.A video clip surfaced where Mitt was addressing a wealthy dinner audience that 47% of Americans were lazy takers,no good lay-abouts and it wasn't worth going after their vote..instant political suicide.Many at the time in the media,circled that clip as the day Mitt lost the public favour and the election.You want to blah on about your narrow minded ideology and take sarcastic pot shots at the left..yeah like that's going to get the job done ay bro?Then check out what I originally penned and I don't see any blame handed out?I said that fast effective policy was the way to attack this type of problem.A bill is in the system waiting for a vote..?You've got your blame goggles stuck to your face.Good politics is about effectively resolving issues as they arise in the country, not trying to alienate voters..200 000 kids starving and your sorting through your list of stereotypes looking for scapegoats to hang the blame on..that's pathetic and solves nothing.Tell it to the starving pupils in NZ schools and then go tell the world we're quite happy to have such a shameful situation in our 'developed' nation? You have to bring yourself to the realization we have sections of the public living day to day on less money than the bills they have. And I'm sure those people have a much better idea than you, of what poverty is cos they're living through it right now.The kids need food not accusations.
26/01/2013 9:27:12 p.m.
They are trying to create an idiocracy devoid of any responsibility...but not on my taxes!
23/01/2013 11:16:17 a.m.
Katubaldy...."The number of starving kids in NZ schools is shameful and they should not be made political footballs while the adults sort it out"....ummm adults sort it out?...what, like the bad parents who don't feed their kids?...but smoke and have a few beers...once again people like you will blame anyone/everything with blinkers on and NEVER blame the parents for letting their kids go hungry...people in NZ don't know what poverty truely is...simple rule...if you can't/struggle to feel 1 kid...don't have 2-3-4! then blame the Govt/Society for your bad choices/decisions....but I guess Lefties and 'personal responsibility' never the twain shall meet eh?
23/01/2013 9:34:08 a.m.
I honestly don't know about this policy. On the one hand, yes the kids need to be fed, and this solution should be implemented as soon as possible to allow the kids to be fed.
On the other hand I think about my cat. I bought him (micro-chipped and desexed), keep him wormed and de-flea him, but the neighbours won't stop feeding him. Therefore he spends a lot of time hanging around them and I no longer really have a cat. Likewise I think if the state starts taking responsibility away from parents to feed their kids, I don't feel the kids are really "in the care" of their parents. Unlike my cat, the kids are not getting fat of this mess, and unlike my cat, I doubt anyone is taking care of the other requirements of kid-ownership. I think the long term solution needs to deal with the fact some of these kids are actually being neglected.
23/01/2013 9:28:03 a.m.
john thomson wrote:
We have benefits that give out free money therefore there should be no one with out food load a $100 of that money on to a payment card each week and that will solve it then that money has to be spent on food why should we tax payers have to pay more just use what you have
23/01/2013 6:13:22 a.m.
See a problem,acknowledge it and devise a solution to fix it. That's good politics and lets hope the bill gets through parliament. Any argument to the contrary will only result in 200 000 kiwi kids continuing to go hungry at school.In the short term deal with the symptoms while in the mid to long term, look to solve the cause. The number of starving kids in NZ schools is shameful and they should not be made political footballs while the adults sort it out.
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