Labour leader Andrew Little has admitted telling two of his MPs not to attend a Northland charter school fundraising dinner.
Both Kelvin Davis and Peeni Henare defied those orders at the weekend, paying $200 for a seat at the event in Whangarei.
Mr Little says it's a bad look because the party's opposed to charter schools.
"I said to them it's my preference that they don't go, but I'd leave the judgement call up to them. They're closer to the local and constituent issues. But we are very clear about Labour's policy on charter schools, and they're fully in line with that."
The fundraiser was for a school run by the He Puna Marama Trust in Whangarei. Charter schools are run privately, but get taxpayer funding.
Mr Davis' attendance was even more notable because he's the party's associate education spokesman.
"I did what I considered was necessary in terms of the party and the party's policy. They've made a judgement call; they've gone, that's it," says Mr Little.
New Zealand First leader Winston Peters also attended, despite his party also being against charter schools.