Opposition to Waiāriki-Bay of Plenty merger

Posted By TEU on Sep 24, 2015 |

Tertiary Update Vol 18 No 31

Most TEU members at Waiāriki and Bay of Plenty polytechnics do not believe there is a good case for a merger, according to a submission by the union.

TEU submitted to the minister this week on the two polytechnics’ plan to merge, arguing that members have serious concerns about the proposal.

Almost 90 percent of TEU members who participated in discussions are opposed to the merger or unsure about its benefits.

Most believe the polytechnics could meet the goals of the merger proposal more easily with smaller-scale interventions, or through collaborations that are already underway.

Local TEU organiser Jane Adams says communities at the two polytechnics do not see evidence that a full merger is necessary.

“Most union members think the two polytechnics could meet the same goals by continuing to build on their close collaboration, whereas a merger would simply lead to unnecessary upheaval.”

TEU’s submission also says it is worried that the merger proposal does not have strong support from the communities of BoPP and Waiāriki.

“A proposal of this size needs clear, even unequivocal support from communities, stakeholders, businesses, staff and students,” it states.

The submission also questions the value of the merger from a financial perspective. The polytechnics’ own business case already notes that both polytechnics are already performing well financially and that the cost of the merger will mean that it will not be profitable for ten years.

Meanwhile, about 35 Rotorua locals and students protested in opposition to the merger earlier this week and Rotorua mayor Steve Chadwick urged a halt to the merger, citing “widespread dissatisfaction” in the community.

Also in Tertiary Update this week:

  1. Small classes must survive in Canterbury merger
  2. National MP on Taratahi board during fraud
  3. Court case against secret TPPA starts next week
  4. Employment outcomes to be published

Other news

Government MP Maurice Williamson was caught on camera visibly aghast at patsy questions being asked by his own party of tertiary education minister Steven Joyce – TVNZ

Auckland University is being called out for its complete lack of an ethical investment policy in its $80 million endowment fund, and for falling behind competitors Victoria and Otago by not divesting from fossil fuels- Fossil Free UoA

Some 200 trade union delegates from about 30 industrialised and developing countries came together in Paris last week to carve out a common position on a just transition for workers affected by climate change – Equal Times

Where have the student radicals gone? – Otago Daily Times

The Government’s science policy has again been slammed as inadequate and lacking any strategic direction – Labour Party science and innovation spokesperson, David Cunliffe

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