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SLEC Receives Government Funding For Delivering English Programme To Migrant Families.

The Southern Lakes English College (SLEC) has received funding from the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) for training 70 migrants in Queenstown. The Zero Fees ESOL Programme is a 12-week, full-time English language course and will be offered at no charge to the students. It will be funded from the PTE Provision of ESOL Provision Fund, for which the government had set aside $1.5m.

Students qualifying for the Zero Fees ESOL Programme will meet the following criteria:

(i) identifies as having English language needs; and

(ii) holds one of the following visas:

(1) Partner of a New Zealander Work Visa; or

(2) Partner of a New Zealander Visitor Visa; or

(3) Child of a New Zealander Visitor Visa; and

(iii) is 16 years of age or over and not a full-time secondary school student.

SLEC principal, Bharat Guha, said students graduating from this English Language Programme would be able to attend full-time programmes at SIT Queenstown, Queenstown Resort College and Otago Polytechnic.

“We are very thankful to the NZ government for the confidence they have in us to deliver the programme to 70 migrant students in Queenstown. We are now working with the relevant government bodies in putting together the class schedules as this needs to be taught by 30 June 2021. We are also extremely happy to be able to provide this for the Queenstown community”.

Bharat Guha wanted to give special mention to Aaron Halstead from Study Queenstown, who works relentlessly in promoting Queenstown as a study destination for international students.

Queenstown – Lakes Mayor, Jim Boult, acknowledged the decision made by the TEC, saying the funding would be critical in helping migrant communities in the Queenstown Lakes district to study, leading to new employment opportunities and increased wellbeing and security.

“This is a great initiative being run by the Southern Lakes English College and any way we can assist in enabling these studies will help safeguard migrant communities in our district from the pressures of COVID-19,” Mayor Boult said.

For further details please contact: Southern Lakes English Education on 03-442-7810 or email

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