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Innovation and competition cut out of tertiary ed.

Gerry Brownlee National Education Spokesperson

24 July 2001

Innovation and competition cut out of tertiary education

Private Training Establishments look set to be the first casualty of the Tertiary Education Advisory Commission, National's Education spokesperson Gerry Brownlee said today.

"With the Minister conceding that today's moratorium on new Private Training Establishments is a 'signal for changes ahead for the PTE sector', alarm bells should be ringing in PTEs.

"Mr Maharey's gentle suggestion that PTEs are to play 'a clear and distinctive complementary role' to New Zealand's 36 public tertiary education providers is little more than a brutal salvo at the innovative end of tertiary education provision.

"TEAC is not expected to report on funding options for the tertiary sector until later this year. Clearly today's announcement indicates TEAC will not be taking an independent stance on funding issues but rather they will be expected to reflect the Minister's own views which will be bad news for existing PTEs.

"Why is this Government so frightened of competition? Mr Maharey, in suggesting that PTEs have moved 'up the framework and put pressure on public institutions' concedes that they have been effective in offering an alternative tertiary education for many young New Zealanders, especially Maori and Pacific Island students.

"This is another triumph for the commissars approach to education which is Labour's one-size-fits-all straight-jacketed fixation," Mr Brownlee said.

Ends


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