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Where’s The Vision?

Te Hautū Kahurangi | Tertiary Education Union is deeply concerned for the future of vocational education, in light of the National government commencing implementation of its 100-day plan commitment to “begin disestablishing Te Pūkenga”.

Te Pou Ahurei | National Secretary Sandra Grey says “this is a group of staff and students that is way beyond change fatigued. Our members have been scared for their jobs for as long as they can remember.”

“After years of working for struggling regional polytechnics that constantly cut courses and provision, they transferred to Te Pūkenga which for better or worse has led to enormous restructuring of the entire sector. Now the new government wants to abandon the hundreds of millions of dollars of work that has been done with no plan for what comes next.”

“We didn’t ask for Te Pūkenga to be established, and we often disagreed with the direction it was going in and the adequacy of its resourcing, but at least there was a vision behind it. What is Penny Simmonds’ vision for the sector?”

“This next round of upheaval will be expensive – it will involve up to sixteen new layers of management depending on how many entities Te Pūkenga is replaced with. That’s up to 16 new Chief Executives and supporting functions which we estimate will cost taxpayers over $63 million in itself. How does this square with the government’s avowed commitment to spending our money wisely?”

“Then there is the enormous cost this will continue to have due to staff and students who are already voting with their feet.”

“The minister needs to slow down and talk this through with the sector before she goes any further or this will blow up in her face.”

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