1.14 Billion for Tertiary Institutions

  • Wyatt Creech
Education

Tertiary education funding of $1.14 billion has been allocated to the country's universities, polytechnics, colleges of education and wananga for the new academic year.

Announcing details of the funding allocation, Education Minister Wyatt Creech said the Government had put sufficient extra funding into tertiary education subsidies to ensure it met its commitment to fund an average of 75% of tuition costs.

Features of the funding announcement include:

Total funding for 1998 is up by $17.7 million on 1997.

148,841 equivalent full-time student (EFTS) places are allocated for 1998, 3,155 more than this year.

1485 of the additional places are earmarked for new programmes. The remaining 1,670 extra places take account of students already enrolled and some of the unfunded places carried by institutions this year. "Growth in tertiary education and training continues, despite falling numbers of students leaving secondary school," said Mr Creech. "This reflects the need for people already in the workforce to upgrade their skills. The increasing number of postgraduate students in New Zealand's tertiary education institutions is also adding to the country's skill base."
The system to allocate equivalent full-time student places was based on student enrolments, the Study Right policy, and institutional priorities for new growth in 1998.

"The entitlement to funding for tertiary institutions depends on the number of students they attract," said Mr Creech. "The changes in funding between institutions tis year reflect population shifts and growth patterns, especially in the North Island."

Massey University has been allocated $124.7 million for 16,467 equivalent full-time student (EFTS) places next year, up 400 on 1997 with a dollar increase of $1.9 million.

Victoria University of Wellington receives $84.3 million for 11,314 equivalent full-time student places, up by 525 places on 1997 and a dollar increase of $3.4 million.

The University of Canterbury gets $86.3 million for 10,684 equivalent full-time student places, an effective increase of 299 places with a dollar increase of $2.3 million.

The Auckland Institute of Technology receives $54.5 million for 7,863 equivalent full-time student places next year, 241 places more than 1997 with a dollar increase of $1.5 million.

Manawatu Polytechnic gets $16.8 million for 2,262 equivalent full-time student places next year, an increase of 206 places on 1997 and a dollar increase of $1.3 million.

Christchurch Polytechnic is allocated $31.3 million for 4,371 equivalent full-time student places next year, and increase of 194 places on 1997 and a dollar increase of $0.9 million.

Christchurch College of Education receives $15.1 million for 2,108 equivalent full-time student places next year, an increase of 198 places on 1997 and a dollar increase of $1.5 million.

Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi gets $1.8 million for 253 equivalent full-time student places next year, an increase of 92 places on 1997 and an increase of just over half a million dollars.

Lincoln University, Central Institute of Technology, Hutt Valley Polytechnic, the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand, Manukau Institute of Technology, Taranaki Polytechnic and Wairarapa Community Polytechnic and Wellington College of Education are allocated fewer equivalent full-time student places next year. Some were not meeting their required enrolment targets for 1997, and one had requested a reduction.

In addition a further 1,123 equivalent full-time student places have been provided for teacher training courses on a contract basis to Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, and Dunedin Colleges of Education; Auckland, Waikato and Massey Universities; Northland, Christchurch, Wairarapa and Whitireia Polytechnics; and UNITEC Institute of Technology.

Other providers of tertiary education and training have been allocated a total of $11.3 million for the 1998 academic year. The funding includes close to $600,000 more for adult basic education providers, such as the Adult Reading and Learning Federation and Workbase Education Trust, to improve adult literacy.

Other special supplementary grants worth a further $11.1 million include funding to pay for more Maori language primary teachers to be trained and for funding to help for students with special needs.

"We have put an extra $12.5 million into tuition subsidies over the next three years to ensure we meet the average 75% tuition costs as agreed to following the Todd Taskforce in 1994. As a result of work by the Taskforce funding was to be cut by 1.3% in 1998. We have agreed to reduce the funding cut to 0.8% to meet the average 75% tuition costs.

"The major problem with the calculation is the lack of agreement as to what costs should be covered. The commitment to fund the average 75% costs will continue based on the formula used by the Todd Group in 1994. These issues will be resolved once the Tertiary Education Review is completed," Mr Creech said.