University restructuring continues

Posted By TEU on May 13, 2010 |

Tertiary Update, Vol 13 No 17, 11 May 2010

Sweeping restructuring programmes continue across the university sector this week with the University of Otago moving to disestablish its design department and review its department of social work and community development. It is not yet known how many staff will be made redundant as a result. Earlier a leaked report revealed it intends to merge its departments of accountancy and business law.

There have been 67 redundancies so far at the University of Canterbury as a result of its STAR project, and a further 87 are anticipated. There the vice chancellor is looking to “annihilate administrators” by creating a general centralised administration team to replace specialist administrators located in colleges.

Similar change proposals are underway or mooted in other universities as well.

TEU president Dr Tom Ryan told Radio New Zealand that universities have increased restructuring since the Government announced funding cuts in last year’s Budget.

Those cuts include nearly 50 million dollars over two years from funding specifically earmarked for staff salaries.

But the minister of tertiary education, Steven Joyce, says university restructuring is part of their normal business, and that recent cutbacks are not due to government funding changes.

Also in Tertiary Update this week:

  1. TEU and six polytechnics go to facilitation
  2. Enrolment restrictions tighten at universities
  3. More science funding for businesses
  4. Additional young people studying
  5. University of Otago to end binge drinking

Other news

Whitireia Community Polytechnic plans to move from its Lindale campus to a new site on the Kapiti Coast. It will focus more on extramural courses, online learning and specialist mobile classes to be held around the district, including at schools – Dominion Post

In the next two weeks, the councils of Lincoln University and Telford Rural Polytechnic will separately meet to decide whether to accept the merger plan, Lincoln vice-chancellor Roger Field said. If ratified, the proposal will go to the Tertiary Education Commission and tertiary education minister Steven Joyce. It then would go out for public consultation, before Mr Joyce made the final decision – The Press

The number of international students in the country has risen for the first time in six years. Education New Zealand figures show 93,500 fee-paying foreign students studied in the country last year, compared with 88,570 the previous year. The students paid $663 million in tuition fees, up 10 per cent from 2008. In 2003, 121,190 students paid $746m in tuition fees – The Press

After months of negotiations, Aoraki Polytechnic and its staff TEU have reached a new pay agreement. The deal includes a 1.95 per cent pay rise in the first year and a 1.9 per cent rise in the second year for academic staff. For general staff, the polytech has offered a 1 per cent pay rise and $1000 lump sum in the first year, and a 1.9 per cent increase in the second year – Timaru Herald

Iranian teacher trade unionist Farzad Kamangar reportedly was executed in secret on 9 May. Although the Iranian authorities had accepted the case for Farzad’s appeal, the process stalled when it should have been sent to the Supreme Court for review. After further delays, Farzad’s lawyer was told that his file had been lost. Despite the evident lack of independent inquiry and the absence of a fair judicial process for Farzad, he apparently was still executed – Education International

Thanks to _setev at Flickr for the photo

TEU Tertiary Update is published weekly on Thursdays and distributed freely to members of the Tertiary Education Union and others. You can subscribe to Tertiary Update by email or feed reader. Back issues are available on the TEU website. Direct inquiries should be made to Stephen Day, email:

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