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NZ beats other countries in education performance

Mon, 20 Sep 2004

NZ beats other countries in education performance

New Zealand is spending more on education than most countries, according to an Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) survey

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New Zealand is spending more on education than most countries, according to an Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) survey Education Minister Trevor Mallard said today.

"During 2001 this government spent 5.5 per cent of GDP on educational institutions, compared to the OECD mean of 5.0 per cent - ranking New Zealand 11 out of 30 countries," Trevor Mallard said.

"This week's OECD Education at a Glance 2004 report also shows in the six-year period 1996 - 2002, teachers' salaries increased at a faster rate than did GDP per capita in New Zealand.

"While the starting and maximum salaries for basic grade teachers at the primary, lower secondary and upper secondary levels, are slightly lower than the OECD average, New Zealand teachers reach their maximum salary in seven years.

"This is much faster than in all other countries, where teachers take on average 25 years. As a result our teachers are earning maximum wages for a longer time than teachers in other countries."

Trevor Mallard said the report also showed New Zealand was performing well in other areas.

New Zealanders have high rates of graduation from secondary education with 76 per cent of 25 - 64 year olds having at least an upper secondary education compared to 65 per cent for OECD countries.

Similarly there are high participation and graduation rates from tertiary type B programmes (those that have a practical, technical or occupational focus).

Some 15 per cent of New Zealanders aged 25 - 64 have a tertiary type B qualification compared to eight per cent for the OECD, placing New Zealand fourth equal among 30 countries.

New Zealand men can expect 17.3 years in fulltime and part-time education while women can expect 19.2 years, compared to the OECD average for men of 16.8 years and for women of 17.5 years.

The report is available at: www.oecd.org\edu\eag2004

ENDS

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