Tracey Martin from New Zealand First is hopefully finding out her responsibilities as associate minister for education today and is settling into her parliamentary routine. I talked to her to find out the specific method of testing that will replace National Standards, or what will be reinstated as she explains, and her plans for Oranga Tamariki.
We have Tracey for another week! Tracey is currently in the state opening of parliament I believe but I spoke with her earlier this morning and we talked about the incident in parliament yesterday, and what NZ First is thinking about the TPPA-11
Carrying on with this week's election topic of health, Jogai Bhatt speaks to Tracey Martin about their health system funding policies and NZ First candidate Kym Koloni's controversial vow to remove the Treaty of Waitangi from New Zealand law.
This week, we kick-off our election focused coverage in the five weeks remaining before September 23, where each week we look at different key policy areas that matter the most in #Decision17. This week, we start things off with the environment, so we ask Tracey about what environmentally-focused policies NZ First has on offer for New Zealand.
Education Minister Nikki Kaye announced last week that a learning support pilot in schools will be expanded to cover 70,000 more children around the country. As part of the pilot extension, 15 Ministry of Education senior staff will be placed as facilitators across 30 Communities of Learning around New Zealand to provide help for students who may need additional learning support. However, critics of the move say it ignores the findings from a recent inquiry into the needs of children who require extra learning help. This week, Ximena chats to Tracey about why the pilot extension isn’t the right solution.
Both Labour and National released their transport policies in the weekend: Labour has pledged to build light rail from downtown Auckland to the airport within a decade and charge Auckland with a fuel tax, while National has promised to invest $267 million into rail. But New Zealand First says neither of the parties are “hitting the mark”. Ximena chats to Tracey to find out why the solutions aren’t enough and what New Zealand First would do differently.