The Herald reports:
A Whanganui High School event solely for Māori and Pasifika boys with boxing champ Joseph Parker has left parents outraged because of its alleged racial exclusion.
And Parker himself is considering pulling the plug.
The flier for the event stated Parker was coming to give a “closed motivational session for Māori and Pasifika boys” and their dads.
However, Parker said he had “absolutely no idea at any stage” the school planned to limit his visit on the basis of students’ race or gender.
Yet the school lied and tried to blame him.
McAllen and board of trustees chairman Randal Southee said the request had come from Parker for the talk to be closed and they were happy to oblige.
McAllen said he’d had only a few concerns raised about the talk being for just Māori and Pasifika boys.
“I don’t understand why there would be any concern with it … because so many initiatives within schools are focusing in on Māori and Pasifika students.
“This is a real case of rather than just talking about it, actually walking it in terms of appreciating the opportunity we’ve been given and then being able to facilitate that.”
However, board of trustees member Piri Cribb said the request for a closed session had not come from Parker’s camp.
When asked why the school had said that, she replied: “Probably because that’s the easiest way to combat some of the horrible feedback and flak that they’re getting about the closed session.
New board chair needed – one that does not lie.
I understand the decision has been reversed.