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Coddington Corrected On Maori Supplementary Grants

16 January 2004 Media Statement

Correction to Deborah Coddington on Maori Special Supplementary Grants

Associate Minister of Education (Tertiary Education) Steve Maharey has corrected errors made by the ACT Party about the Maori special supplementary grant scheme, now in its fourth year of operation.

Steve Maharey said the ACT Party had again got the facts wrong in its desire to paint Maori issues in the way ACT wants to portray them.

“I’m pleased that Ms Coddington has now discovered this grants scheme, which I announced in a media release on 2 November 2000. However, she has clearly not understood the scheme.

“The size of the grant ranges from $125-145 per equivalent full-time student. This is less than 2% of the average tuition subsidy in 2002 ($7,340), so Ms Coddington’s depiction of an ‘unjustifiable financial incentive for tertiary institutions to enrol Maori’ is quite misleading.

“Rather, the purpose of the grant is to help pay for the particular initiatives that institutions have in place to support Maori and Pacific participation and retention. Institutions are required to report on what they use the grants for.

“In the written question cited by Ms Coddington (WPQ 13340 [2003]), I also specifically pointed out that the grants were not allowed to be used for tuition fee reduction (nor for capital expenditure or changes to, or development of, courses or qualifications).

“Institutions also receive special supplementary grants to help fund the initiatives they have in place to support students with disabilities. I assume that ACT would want this scheme, introduced by the National Party, to be abolished as well,” Steve Maharey said.

***

A Ministry of Education review of the implementation and effectiveness of the special supplementary grant scheme for Maori and Pasifika students is available on the Ministry website at: http://www.minedu.govt.nz/index.cfm?layout=document&documentid=9206&indexid=1063&indexparentid=2107

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