Friday, October 17, 2014

Treasury cherry-picks its data

Yesterday we learned that Treasury didn't like food-in-schools. And now we know why: because they cherry-picked their data to support their preferred conclusion of leaving the poor to starve:

A report behind Treasury advice that said school breakfast programmes did not work, says the programmes may need to be used more, to get better results.

The Treasury cited an Auckland University study done in 2010 which showed that children's participation in breakfast programmes did not result in higher school attendance or achievement.

But the study also showed there was a significant decrease in children's hunger and that more frequent attendance of the programmes may be required to influence attendance and achievement.

Treasury document did not include these findings in its report to the Government.

This is intellectually dishonest. But its also another example of the deterioration in public service values under National. Public servants are supposed to be professionals, giving robust and unbiased free and frank advice. Treasury clearly isn't. They're a department of hacks, telling the government what it wants to hear (or, alternatively, serving their own right-wing ideological agenda). And that's simply not acceptable in our public service.