Well it’s official. Labour is going to dump National’s Standards and reduce class sizes by reallocating the hundreds of millions of dollars being spent by National on policy nobody wants.
I would be very interesting to be a fly on the wall at the offices of National’s PR boffins this evening. They will be absolutely freaking out, surely. National failed massively by trying to reorganise the ‘teaching ratio’ which, after a few weeks of middle class voter parents freaking out, was dumped. Labour are saying, “not only do we think bigger class sizes are bloody stupid, we are actually going to make class sizes smaller.”
National are on very shaky ground. They have that grand-master of political strategy Hekia Parata steering the ship towards the ragged rocks of doom. Labour need to exploit this weakness.
Labour have looked around at child poverty and National being in it for their rich mates and decided that is not really going to get them votes. What will get them votes is improving outcomes for the kids of all those wavering voters who probably don’t really want to vote for National but quite like John Key and aren’t really that fussed about Labour in comparison.
NOTE: I must point out that I am in no way throwing to one side (and nor are Labour) the importance of child poverty and the massive impact it will have on future New Zealand OR the equally massive impact neoliberal policies for the ultra-rich will have. Both of these things are important but, oh so unfortunately, they do not really impact on the middle class.
These few days out of the classroom are going to be most interesting.