Story image

Friend or foe, Education Minister Hekia Parata bows out

19 Oct 16

Hekia Parata has announced she is not running in the General Election next year, after nearly 10 years in the politics business.

The Education Minister and national List MP says she advised Prime Minister John Key of her decision earlier this year.

“It is a privilege to be part of the John Key-led Government. However this is the right decision for me and my family, and it is the right time to make my intentions known,” says Parata.

Parata says she has no plans beyond serving as Education Minister as long as the Prime Minister wishes her to. 

“There are still a number of deliverables in the education work plan in the meantime and my focus and energy will be unwavering,” she states.

Parata has not been the most popular of ministers, and today told reporters the education portfolio has been incredibly challenging.

“It's not the one you could ever hope to be the most popular in, but it's the most rewarding,” Parata says.

“Of course it is challenging, absolutely challenging. But that goes with this portfolio – people feel passionately about it, and so they should,” she says.

“I respect that from New Zealand parents; they want to know that the best is happening for their kids and so they do take this personally, I take it personally.

“So has it been challenging? Yes. Has that vanquished me? No.”

Hekia grew up in a Ruatoria, and came to Parliament after the General Election in November 2008. She has served as the Minister of Education since 2011. 

“It is an honour to work each day in this portfolio – it’s true that it involves a number of difficult decisions but I have been committed to making the right decision for our children and young people.

“Young people are at the heart of this. I’ve never lost focus on that no matter what,” Parata adds.

Parata has previously held the portfolios of Minister of Pacific Island Affairs, Minister of Energy and Resources, Minister for Women, Minister of Ethnic Affairs, Minister for Community & Voluntary Sector, and Associate Minister of ACC.

“I am also keen to see a fresh candidate nominated in the marvellous seat of Mana and to provide voters with a strong contest at the next election,” Parata says.

IDC: Standalone VR headset shipments grow 428.6% in 3Q18
The VR headset market returned to growth in 3Q18 after four consecutive quarters of decline and now makes up 97% of the combined market.
Meet Rentbot, the chatbot that can help with tenancy law
If you find yourself in a tricky situation  - or if you just want to understand your rights as a landlord or tenant, you can now turn to a chatbot for help.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) finally releases on PS4
PUBG on PS4 feels like it’s still in Early Access as the graphics look horribly outdated and the game runs poorly too. 
How AI can fundamentally change the business landscape
“This is an extremely interesting if not pivotal time to discuss how AI is being deployed and leveraged, both in business and at home.”
CERT NZ highlights rise of unauthorised access incidents
“In one case, the attacker gained access and tracked the business’s emails for at least six months. They gathered extensive knowledge of the business’s billing cycles."
Report finds GCSB in compliance with NZ rights
The Inspector-General has given the GCSB its compliance tick of approval for the fourth year in a row.
Game review: Just Cause 4 on PC
Rico Rodriguez returns to wreak over-the-top havoc for a fourth time. This time the island nation of Solís is our hero’s sandbox, ripe for destruction.
Hands-on review: Logitech G502 HERO gaming mouse
My favourite feature of the G502s is the ‘Sniper’ button, which is found on the left hand side of the device. When held, this lowers the DPI and allows you to achieve maximum accuracy whilst honing in on a kill on your favourite FPS title.