Bill English’s second budget will do nothing to enhance the innovation, learning and research going on in tertiary education institutions around the country, says TEU national president Dr Tom Ryan.
“New Zealand has a world class tertiary education system, with world class people staffing it, and is a crucial driver of a healthy, productive economy. But it can’t do that effectively when the government keeps shrinking the pool of public money to fund the sector.”
The total Vote Education has not even kept up with the rate of inflation. Within tertiary education sector things are even worse, with most budget lines either remaining static or falling behind.
For instance, the minister of tertiary education says pastoral care for students is crucial to education quality. In practice, what that means is cuts of over $40 million over the next four years due to the finance minister’s prescription for improved efficiency within student support system.
“Thousands of tertiary education students and staff are poised to be part of an exciting economic recovery. However, the government’s response is to buy a few hundred students new places in universities and polytechnics by making cuts to the quality of their education,” said Dr Ryan.