“The government needs to be careful when it links tertiary education funding to performance that it improves the performance of institutions rather than shutting out students who are less likely to succeed.”
That is the view of TEU national president Dr Tom Ryan, following an announcement this afternoon by tertiary education minister Steven Joyce of a new funding model which will see tertiary education providers receive a proportion of their funding based on student performance.
From 2012, five percent of tertiary education institutions’ funding will based on their numbers of course completions, qualification completions, progressions to higher study, and numbers of students retained in study.
Dr Ryan says that the minister needs to make sure the onus of his new funding model is on tertiary education institutions to provide comprehensive pastoral care, and high quality advice and academic planning. Otherwise there is a danger that institutions will seek to lift their funding by excluding students they think are less likely to succeed, or that pressure will be put on teachers who have tough academic standards.
“We are used to performance funding in the tertiary education sector,” said Dr Ryan. “But we believe funding needs to support the right type of performance – helping and supporting students to learn, rather than risk New Zealand losing good staff and potential new students.”