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Tertiary education a double failure for Maori


MEDIA RELEASE Date: 22 August 02 Attention: Education/Maori Reporters For Immediate Release

Tertiary education a double failure for Maori

Maori tertiary students are getting into more and more debt under the student loan scheme, but many of these students will not gain a qualification to help them repay their debt. Research by the Aotearoa Tertiary Students' Association (ATSA) shows that collectively Maori students owe over $880 million in student debt. Maori tertiary students are more likely to drop of study, meaning that many will have little ability to repay their student loan.

"New Zealand's education system is failing to cater for the learning and social needs of Maori students and the result is that these students have high drop out rates," said Julie Pettett, President of ATSA. "It is a crime that we are lending Maori tertiary students huge amounts of money to enter a system that sets them up to fail."

"There are also substantial costs to institutions as a result of completion failure," said Pettett. "Student drop out is a total waste of the teaching resources, time and financial capital that government and institutions spend in the delivery of educational services."

"Actions speak louder than words. ATSA is holding a four day hui, starting today, to examine these issues," said Pettett, "This hui will identify what students see as the solutions. It will then be up to institutions and the government to support these solutions."

ENDS

For further comment, contact: Julie Pettett ATSA National President Cell phone 029 939 1417 (04) 9391417

The Aotearoa Tertiary Students' Association - Representing University, Polytechnic and Wananga students

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