Thursday, May 16, 2019


Jacinda Ardern's 'Have your first year of tertiary education free on me' bribe designed to encourage more students into tertiary education isn't working ... sez the Minister of Finance in announcing he has cut $200 million from funds allocated to this initiative as part of his goal to save one billion dollars targeting low quality government spending.

The Minister has made the right call ... it's low quality spending in spades.   Has to be when one student in three fails to complete their degree and when university rolls have remained static.

I am aware of a remit to be debated at the National's Northern Region Conference which would see the programme scrapped.   Instead the student would be refunded the tuition cost component of fees paid up to a maximum of $12,000 on the successful completion of his/hers first degree with the payment initially directed against any outstanding student loan with the balance (if any) being paid direct to the student.     The notes accompanying the remit have it the the current policy subsidises failure ... that this would reward success.     I guess some will argue the purist view that any payment is wrong.   Real politik would suggest otherwise.   Should be an interesting debate.

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