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Private Trainees Denied Govt Support

Education Minister Trevor Mallard today clearly signalled the Government's attitude to future funding of private training establishments, said National's Education spokesman Gerry Brownlee.

Last week Mr Mallard announced secondary subject teacher trainee allowances as part of a teacher supply package. The fine print states that students who choose to attend private teacher providers are ineligible for the new funding.

When questioned about this discrepancy in Parliament by Gerry Brownlee, Mr Mallard confirmed that the allowance is available for students attending public teacher training institutions only and said that he believes there are too many PTEs.

"There are only two private secondary teacher training providers in New Zealand both of which have an excellent track record in the quality of their graduates. Graduates from the New Zealand Graduate School of Education in Christchurch and the Bethlehem Institute of Education in Tauranga are highly sought after by school principals.

"This decision was not made based on quality or performance but rather on who owns the institutions. Mr Mallard has been hijacked by the concept of centralised control.

"There are issues of course quality with some private primary teacher training providers and these must be addressed. However, the Minister's decision to exclude private secondary teacher training providers from the new teacher supply initiative shows a lack of vision," Mr Brownlee said.


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