Ministers have confirmed the transfer of Lincoln University’s Telford campus to the Taratahi Agricultural Training Centre.
Consents necessary to allow Taratahi’s acquisition of the Telford campus were given yesterday by Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy and Associate Minister Louise Upston.
The transfer will take effect on 31 July, however Lincoln University qualifications will continue until the transition is completed, which it said could take some months. Lincoln said it would also offer IT, technical and student administrative support during the transition.
A statement of intent for the takeover was signed between Lincoln University and Taratahi back in January, but it has taken until now for an agreement to be finalised and approved.
Taratahi has committed to developing greater access to career opportunities in the primary sector workforce at all levels.
The Tertiary Education Union (TEU) has previously called on Ministers to put in place a properly funded long-term plan that will ensure continued provision of training opportunities in Balclutha.
“We are pleased to hear Taratahi is committed to providing locally-focused, quality training opportunities for current and future generations of students. However, National’s track record of failing to support regional tertiary education provision does worry us, so we hope Ministers share Taratahi’s commitment and back it up with a properly funded plan for tertiary education in the region,” Kris Smith, organiser of the TEU branch at Telford, said.
Smith said that Taratahi also needs to make a commitment to staff that they will keep in place the terms and conditions Telford staff are currently employed under.