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Equity funding welcomed

The Association of University of Staff (AUS) has welcomed the initiative to encourage greater Maori and Pacific Island student participation in tertiary education that has been announced by the Hon Steve Maharey.

AUS National President, Neville Blampied, said in Christchurch today that research shows that there has been a decline in participation by these groups as tuition fees have severely impacted on the cost of education during the past decade

“As a small society, struggling to meet the challenge to become a knowledge society, New Zealand cannot afford the loss of talent from any group or sector.

“AUS has, therefore, long been an advocate for properly funded and resourced foundation and bridging programmes, weighted funding and equity monitoring of institutions.”

“As the Minister says, this package recognises the additional costs in providing high quality education to disadvantaged groups.”

“The package therefore represents a good first step in the direction of ensuring that access to tertiary education is facilitated for all prospective students based on their potential to achieve
rather than their ability to pay.”

Neville Blampied added that a further major challenge for the government and institutions was to
ensure that when students participate in tertiary education, they can do so in a properly resourced
system that can achieve quality outcomes in a co-operative and collaborative way.

"That is far from guaranteed under present policy settings and funding arrangements," Blampied stated.

Contact number for Neville Blampied: 021 680 475

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