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Campaign to protect public tertiary education

Campaign to protect public tertiary education from National’s law to launch

MAY 18, 2017

Tertiary Update Vol 20 No 18

Staff, students and representatives of the local community will come together tomorrow at the Ara Institute of Canterbury to launch the TEU’s campaign to protect quality public tertiary education from a controversial law prioritising for-profit providers.

Join the campaign here and show National that Kiwis want properly funded public tertiary education.

National’s law will amend the Education Act to enshrine a funding approach that has already been trialled at some levels of tertiary education provision and led to the closure of courses in small rural and regional communities where institutes of technology and polytechnics have lost out to for-profit providers.

TEU’s campaign will bring together voices from across the sector and the local community to lobby MPs and organise submissions to the Select Committee, highlighting that tertiary education belongs to us all.

“Tertiary education belongs to all of us and that is what our campaign is all about. To win, we need as many people as possible to stand with us,” Sandra Grey, TEU national president, said.

If enough people speak out and MPs grasp the transformative power of public tertiary education for individuals and society then this Bill can be stopped.

The campaign will make clear that harnessing this transformative power is best served by prioritising access to education for all citizens, maintaining the role of education as critic and conscience of society and improving the working conditions of staff.

“If this law passes vast sums of public money intended for polytechnics, universities and wānanga could soon be used to support companies that prioritise profit over education. We need as many voices as possible from around the country to tell National that this is not how we want tertiary education run in this country,” Grey added.

To add your voice to the campaign, click here.

National’s contentious law passed its first reading last week and has been handed to the Education and Science Select Committee for more detailed deliberation.

Ara was chosen as the site for the launch because a recent consultation document published by management of the institution cited competition from for-profit providers as one reason why it is planning to close six courses.

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