Even though I’m living here in Canada now, I still keep an eye on political news from back home in New Zealand.
However, I wouldn’t have been able to avoid this video clip even if I tried, as it was splashed all over my Facebook and Twitter feeds today:
While all the details might not be identical, I’m sure the problem exists across Canada too – but what problem is that exactly?
The response by the media and commentariat in New Zealand was predictable, with calls for more money to be spent on schools, children, welfare and (government-funded) charities who provide lunches in some poorer schools.
Except that the video itself proves that this isn’t really a money problem. Rather, it’s an education and responsibility issue. The ‘lunches’ in the ‘poor’ schools would have cost more than the healthier lunches in the other school.
New Zealand already has an extensive welfare state – there shouldn’t be anyone who can’t afford food for their children. It’s clearly just not a priority for many parents. Very sad.
Note: In New Zealand, schools are given decile ratings not based on their students performance but on the income levels of the area in which the school is located. The government then allocates more funding for schools in poorer areas (ie lower decile ratings).