Last year David Shearer surprised everyone by jacking it in and quitting as Labour leader.
He faced an unruly and disloyal caucus, along with an activist membership who were implacably opposed to his way of thinking. They were more inclined to go for a charlatan from the top end of town spouting socialist mantra than follow a leader who actually is smart and proves it.
His column yesterday in the Herald shows why Labour had to replace him as leader…he is focused on solutions not providing systems that encourage and develop locked in entitlement mentalities.
Since my Food in Schools Bill – to provide food to lower-decile schools – was drawn out of the Parliamentary ballot in October, I’ve been rethinking this course of action.
My meetings with principals, doctors, charities and communities have convinced me that some important adjustments should be made to the bill.
My research took me to a wonderful school, Owairaka District School, where 8-year-old students served me a lunch of vegetarian pizza from their own pizza oven, salad from their garden, and muffins made with eggs from their chickens and honey from their hives.
Owairaka is a decile 2 school but the children are kept nourished and learning through this innovative garden-to-table programme.
But more critically, they are picking up the lifetime skills of gardening and food preparation – and they are doing it alongside family and community volunteers who also benefit.
It’s win, win, win – so much better than a hand-out for the kids – and it raised a question I have grappled with since my bill was drawn.
Is it right to impose a one-size-fits-all solution on to every low-decile school in the form of a food hand-out?Â Read more »