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$80m tertiary mess gets bigger

$80m tertiary mess gets bigger

The announcement that a controversial Maori sing-along course will be extended into Auckland shows the Government is continuing to waste millions of dollars on low-quality tertiary courses, says National’s Education spokesman Bill English.

Napier’s Eastern Institute of Technology says it will extend the same course that it was so highly criticised for earlier in the year on Auckland station Ruia Mai in October.

The Government will pay $5000 for each fulltime equivalent student who enrols in the course. They will get a song book and then are expected to listen to 30-minute sessions on the radio each day.

“There is no reliable way to tell if a student finishes the course, or even if they start it”, says Mr English.

“Steve Maharey says he will try to take money back from polytechs which run courses like this, but the reality is he is now going to pay out millions for exactly that type of course in Auckland.

“This new course shows that the polytechs aren’t taking any notice of what the Government says.

“Mr Maharey must step in to chop this course.

“This $80 million tertiary mess keeps getting bigger and the Government must plug the holes that have seen millions already wasted in the past 12 months,” Mr English says.

Polytechnics that have received tertiary funding for community education courses include:

o Tairawhiti Polytechnic: $21.7 million.
o Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology: $15 million.
o Manukau Institute of Technology: $15 million.
o Ucol: $10.5 million
o Eastern Institute of Technology: $7.8 million.
o Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi: $6.9 million.

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