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A Bill drafted by National’s education spokesperson, Nikki Kaye, is before Parliament after if was drawn from a ballot.
If passed into law schools would be required to offer at least one other language to children under 13, and it would require schools to choose from 10 priority languages including Māori, Mandarin and sign language.
Nikki Kaye hopes to get other parties to back her plan to make learning a second language compulsory in primary and intermediate schools.
Ms Kaye said there were huge benefits for young children learning a second language.
Having the ability to speak a second language can be the difference in allowing children to be able to speak with their grandparents or young business leaders being able to connect to markets like China and India, Ms Kaye said.
Proposed member’s bill ballot system:
In Parliament there is an order of bills that are to be debated each day in the debating chamber, called the Order Paper. When a space on the Order Paper becomes available, a ballot is held to decide which members’ bill(s) will be introduced. This time Nikki Kaye’s second language bill was drawn.
Bill
A bill is proposed legislation under consideration by the government. A bill does not become law until it is passed by the government. Once a bill has been enacted into law, it is called an Act or a statute.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will officially return from maternity leave early tomorrow (Thursday).
In fact, she will officially be Prime Minster again at midnight tonight, when Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters leaves the country.
However, she will not return to Wellington until next week. She will travel to Wellington on Saturday with her partner and baby and set up her family in the Prime Minister’s residence at Premier House.
Her Thursday return will come exactly six weeks after giving birth to her daughter Neve Te Aroha Ardern Gayford in June.

The Prime Minister has made Fortune magazine’s list of the world’s most influential young people.
To qualify for the list you have to be be aged under 40, Jacinda Ardern is 37.
The magazine describes Ms Ardern as a rock star of New Zealand politics.
Top of the list is Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and Instagram founder Kevin Systrom, both aged 34.
Go Jacinda Ardern!

New Zealand’s finance minister Grant Robertson has delivered the 2018 budget.
In the budget that he gave today in parliament he outlined how New Zealand will spend its money over the next year.
The key points from the 2018 Budget are outlined below. The focus seems to be on health and education.
HEALTH
Very low-cost GP visits will be extended to all Community Services Card holders. Eligibility for the card will be extended to all Housing NZ tenants, and those receiving an income related rent subsidy or accommodation supplement.
Free doctor visits and prescriptions are extended to all under-14s.
EDUCATION
The education sector gets nearly $2 billion. That’ll go on 1500 new teachers, 200 new classrooms, and a big boost to learning support.
Learning support gets an extra $133.5 million over four years. That’ll go toward the likes of speech language therapists and psychologists. There will be an extra $30.4 million over four years for students who are deaf and hard of hearing.
HOUSING
The Government has provided funding for an additional 6400 state houses over four years – or 1600 a year. It’ll come at a cost of $234 million over four years.
REFUGEES
The Government will fund two additional accommodation blocks at the Māngere Refugee Resettlement Centre. The Government says this will support increasing the Refugee Quota to 1500 places per year.There’s also a funding boost of $3.8 million over four years for the Refugee and Protection unit.

Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, has released a letter outlining Winston Peters’ duties while she is on maternity leave.
Deputy prime minister Mr Peters will act in Jacinda Ardern’s role during the six weeks she takes off after childbirth. She is due on 17 June.
Ms Ardern said the working arrangement was exactly the same as when she travelled overseas. The only difference is the length of time.
Mr Peters would manage the day-to-day business of government, such as answering questions in parliament and attending official engagements.
He would continue to consult Ms Ardern on major issues and matters of national security.
Mr Peters said he was “ready for it”.

New Zealand Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, is currently in London meeting leaders from around the world.
Two days ago she sat down with the British, Australian and Canadian Prime Ministers to talk about Russia and the rumours around their interference with millions of computers.
Ms Ardern also had a face-to-face meeting with UK Prime Minister Theresa May at Downing Street. During that meeting the pair discussed trade and international tensions – including the Syria crisis.
To cap off a busy day she also met royals Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and London Mayor Sadiq Khan.

As a new Government we’ve made a big deal out of our commitment to do our job differently – to be fairer and more inclusive in the way we spend public money, and how we make the big decisions that affect the people, and the landscape of New Zealand. To do that we need good quality information about what New Zealanders need.
Recently, millions of Kiwis did their bit to help us make better decisions about healthcare, schooling, housing, and the other core roles of government, by telling us about themselves in the census.
By the end of census day, almost three million Kiwis had completed their census forms. Tens of thousands more have been filled in each day since.
By filling in the census every five years, you’re helping to paint a rich picture of our ever-changing New Zealand population. In those five years communities have often undergone huge changes.
In the past five years, the Canterbury landscape has dramatically changed, house prices have skyrocketed, the population has aged, and entire new industries have emerged.
As a Government, we’re aware of the challenges facing New Zealand. But with the information from the census we can target our plans and our decisions more finely, to make the changes New Zealand needs.
Housing is a real priority for the government. For the first time, this year’s census asked about the dampness of Kiwis’ homes, and the census can also provide information on the growing problem of New Zealanders living in cars. We’ll use this information to help make sure every Kiwi has a warm, dry place to call home.
In education, census information will help the government deliver on its plan to modernise New Zealand’s schools.
We will build schools and kōhanga reo where they’re needed most, and ensure that out-dated and worn-out schools building are a thing of the past. We’ll make sure every child in every school can learn in a modern classroom.
Thank you again for supporting this year’s census. By taking part, you’ve helped make New Zealand a better place. I am excited about the challenges ahead and I know the government will use the census’ new information to work towards the Prime Minister’s goal of a better, fairer New Zealand for everyone.

Simon Bridges has been named as the new leader of the National Party. Paula Bennett will continue as deputy leader.
Simon Bridges is the MP for Tauranga and was first elected to Parliament in 2008.
He is the National party’s first Māori leader.
He is replacing Bill English, who resigned earlier this month.
Speaking after the announcement, Mr Bridges said he was humbled by his colleagues picking him to be the 12th leader of the National Party.
He tweeted “I’m honoured to be elected as @NZNationalParty Leader today – it’s an enormous privilege. My focus will be on presenting an ambitious and strong alternative Government heading into 2020.”

The entire education system, from pre-school until adult education, is to be completely overhauled, bringing in the biggest changes to the system in decades.
The way schools are governed – by a board of trustees making community-based decisions – could be scrapped.
So too is NCEA, early education, school property, learning support and how the school system responds to skills needed in the 21st century such as technology.
“We need a system – from the cradle to the grave – that is inclusive, that can adapt to the needs of the modern world,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said in a statement.
“So far there is very little information about what exactly the Government will be reviewing and the devil will be in the detail,” National’s Education spokesperson Nikki Kaye said in a statement.
Main components of Chris Hipkins’ plan:

  • Creating a strategic plan and review of early childhood education
  • Review of Tomorrow’s Schools
  • Developing a future-focused Education Workforce Strategy
  • An action plan for learning support
  • A comprehensive reform of school property – says “too many schools are struggling to cope with outdated facilities”
  • Programme of change for the institute of technology and polytechnic subsector and vocational education
  • Review of NCEA
  • Focus on raising achievement for Māori
  • Focus on raising achievement for Pasifika
  • Decisions on Communities of Online Learning

Bill English has resigned as leader of the National Party.
Mr English accompanied by his wife Mary and family said now was the right time to step aside. He said he had informed his party on Tuesday morning.
He said the party would now go through its process of choosing a new leader which was likely to take a couple of weeks.
“My resignation will take effect on Tuesday 27 and I intend to deliver a valedictory speech on Thursday 1 March,” he said.
He said he believed this would give the National Party time to pick a new leader and the best possible opportunity in the next election.
Mr English said he was proud of his political career particularly his work in health, rebuilding the economy after the global financial crisis and helping to rebuild Christchurch.
Mr English entered parliament in 1990 as the MP for the Wallace (now Clutha-Southland) district.
He served as a health minister, treasurer and finance minister before being appointed the party leader in 2001. After National’s election defeat in 2002 he was replaced as party leader by Don Brash the following year.
Following National’s victory in 2008 he was appointed as finance and deputy Prime Minister, and took over the leadership from John Key when he stood down in December 2016.