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NZEI: Dependence On Foreign Students A Concern

NZEI: Dependence On Foreign Students A Concern

Wellington – NZEI Te Riu Roa shares the Education Review Office concern about schools becoming dependent on the money paid by foreign fee paying students to provide a quality education for their New Zealand students.

The ERO has released a report on the impact of foreign fee paying students in New Zealand schools. NZEI Te Riu Roa represents teachers and principals in primary schools plus support staff in both primary and secondary schools.

“I welcome the ERO’s finding that it could detect no negative impact on New Zealand students of having foreign fee paying students in our schools,” says NZEI Te Riu Roa National President, Bruce Adin.

“I’m also pleased with the finding that most schools are providing a satisfactory quality of educational experience for the foreign students and that there is general satisfaction with their accommodation and care while they are living in New Zealand.”

“What does concern me is the issue of schools becoming dependent on the money these foreign students pay to provide core school activities and to ensure a quality education for their New Zealand students,” says Bruce Adin

The ERO report notes that most schools were using the income they got from foreign fee paying students to ensure that they could deliver a quality education for their New Zealand students as well as those from overseas. Almost 60% of secondary schools and almost 30% of primary schools surveyed said the income from foreign students was very important. Some schools reported that they had come to rely on this money and the education they provide their New Zealand students would be adversely affected if it dried up. The report warns of the danger of using these fees to hire teachers and other staff when that income could evaporate in the future. It ends by signalling further investigation into the extent to which schools are becoming dependent on the income from foreign fee paying students and the nature of the expenditure of this income. “Schools becoming dependent on money from foreign students is a real concern. The number of these students appears to be falling and it is vital that schools don’t rely on this income,” says Bruce Adin.

“It is up the government to ensure that schools receive the funding they need to provide their students with a quality education. This is a key investment for the country and schools should not have to count on money from foreign students to educate New Zealand children,” says Mr Adin.

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