A bigger than expected surplus has only been possible because of the chronic underfunding of the education of New Zealand’s children, says NZEI Te Riu Roa.
NZEI President Lynda Stuart said educators would be sickened by the size of the surplus, after years of being told there wasn’t money for the funding jolt desperately needed in early childhood education and schooling.
“The government this week announced it was spending $10 billion on ‘the new generation of roads of national significance’, but we say we should be spending it on the new generation that really matters – the children of New Zealand,” she said.
“This surplus has come at the expense of public services. This government is telling New Zealanders that roads and potential tax cuts are more important than children, the sick, the vulnerable and our environment.
“We actually are a wealthy country and we can afford to properly fund our biggest priorities. It’s time to put people first, especially our children.”