17 Feb 2014

Principal urges social welfare changes

7:21 am on 17 February 2014

A Hamilton-based Maori principal is urging politicians to overhaul social welfare policies and include both health and education ahead of this year's election.

The problem of child poverty in New Zealand has been highlighted in several reports and studies.

Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Whakawatea tumuaki (principal) Susanne Simmons-Kopa is saddened that tamariki are still going to school hungry.

Ms Simmons-Kopa wants politicians to know that making changes isn't about giving school principals more money.

She said the focus should instead be on free education and health care, warm homes for children in need and helping them to be part of the 21st century learning, adding that children should not be isolated because they're being raised in a family that doesn't have enough money.