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Quit The Window Dressing Minister

Quit The Window Dressing Minister

ACT New Zealand Associate Education Spokesman Stephen Franks today accused Tertiary Education Minister Steve Maharey of attempting to further restrict the role of private education providers.

"The only good thing about the protocol is that it is an acknowledgement by the Labour Government that its campaign to kill off the private training sector has failed. Despite Mr Maharey's best efforts, the sector has not withered and died," Mr Franks said.

"Mr Maharey doesn't even attempt to hide his ideological bias against the private sector. In his long statement to the New Zealand Association of Private Education Providers annual conference in Wellington, he effectively admitted he wants it as nothing more than a niche provider, at the lower skill and reputation end of the market.

"Unfortunately for the Minister, students who attend private institutions and employers - who rely on them for skilled staff - don't share his class snobbery and the PTE's will survive. They will be there to flourish under a new government that is neutral about ownership and focussed on results.

"This protocol is plain and simple window dressing. Deeds speak louder than words. Since it's been in office, the Labour Government has attempted to knee cap the sector. Its actions show it is no friend of private training establishments.

"The Minister should take his eye patch off and tell private providers they can do what they do best - teaching and training at any level where they show they can do it best - whether or not it treads on state toes," Mr Franks said.

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