143% increase in teacher registration fees unaffordable
12 April, 2017
143% increase in teacher registration fees unaffordable for many childcare centres
The Education Council of Aotearoa New Zealand (Educanz) is proposing to increase teacher registration fees by 143%, but the real increase would be even greater for many early childhood education teachers, says Early Childhood Council CEO Peter Reynolds.
Mr Reynolds said today (12 April) that many teachers’ Education Council fees were paid by the ECE services for which they worked – and many of these services would withdraw from this commitment were annual fees increased from $70 to $170 as proposed.
Were this to happen, many teachers, already under economic pressure from Auckland house prices, for example, would find themselves paying their own registration fees for the first time in many years.
There was an obvious reason for centres withdrawing from paying teacher registration fees, Mr Reynolds said.
The Education Council fees increase, from the viewpoint of an ECE centre paying it on behalf of teachers, would be ‘just another in the many very damaging funding cuts that have been visited on ECE services since Budget 2010’.
These cuts had slashed more than $90,000 a year from an average 50-child centre budget, Mr Reynolds said. And many early childhood education centres were ‘in no shape to endure either further funding cuts or further increases in user charges’.
The $100-a-year increase per teacher amounted to $1200 for a centre with 12 teachers, and was ‘simply unaffordable for many who are already operating on the breadline’.
Given the Government had been eroding per-child ECE funding by not compensating services for inflation, there was ‘deep irony’ in the Education Council proposal to implement additional fees increases based on the Consumer Price Index, Mr Reynolds said.