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Student Allowance Speculation Unhelpful

17 July 2008

Student Allowance Speculation Unhelpful

Speculation that a universal student allowance might be introduced at a cost of $728 million was unhelpful at a time when New Zealand was spending well above the OECD average on student financial support, according to the New Zealand Vice-Chancellors’ Committee.

The representative body for the country’s eight universities believes such a sum would be better invested in tertiary education institutions which had experienced a sustained rundown in their per student funding.

Research for a NZVCC publication An Investment Approach to Public Support of New Zealand’s Universities has revealed that Government funding per university full-time equivalent student has fallen from $10,932 in 1991 to $9,098 in 2006, adjusted for CPI in constant 2006 dollars.

However, New Zealand continues to invest at more than twice the rate in tertiary students than it does in its tertiary education institutions. The country devotes 42 per cent of tertiary education spending to student financial support, compared with an OECD average of 18 per cent.

ENDS

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