Today the Minister of Education, Chris Hipkins, released the decisions of the Review of Vocational Education (RoVE).
From the 1 April 2020 onwards, there will be only one ITP, with a working name of the NZ Institute of Skills and Technology (NZIST). NZIST will include all existing 16 ITPs and will offer on-campus, work-based and online learning.
On 1 April 2020, EIT will become a subsidiary of the new national institution. On the same day the EIT Council will be replaced by an EIT subsidiary board of the new national institute. “EIT is pleased that there will be some continuity between the existing council and the new board,” says EIT council chair, Geraldine Travers.
The government said that the new system will ensure strong regional leadership. They want to ensure that all regions are getting access to excellent vocational education provision. This is not always the case elsewhere, hence part of the reason for the government’s reforms. EIT is an example of the success that all regions should be experiencing.
EIT does not support a highly centralised national institution, and welcomes the government’s commitment to ensuring strong and effective regional and local leadership.
“EIT is one of NZ’s leading institutes of technology and is here for the long term and will remain here for tertiary education provision,” says Mrs Travers.
Students – domestic and international students alike – can continue to enrol with confidence at EIT. The strong degree and postgraduate provision from EIT will remain and will continue to grow.
EIT welcomes the focus of the reforms on greater success for Māori. EIT has one of the highest levels of Māori student participation and success within the sector and regards success in this area as fundamental if the reforms are to be successful.
EIT acknowledges that the reforms will create uncertainty for staff and welcomes the Minister’s commitment to providing support during the transition period. “Having already gone through a successful merger with Tairāwhiti Polytechnic some years ago we understand and appreciate the importance of people and carefully managing large scale change,” says Mrs. Travers.
EIT welcomes the announcement around establishment of a new unified funding system. “We need a more flexible and integrated approach to funding. It has to support industry training and provision into remote and rural communities and for those who might have had limited previous educational success,” says Mrs Travers.
“EIT is one of the few ITPs in New Zealand with a sound financial position with strong financial reserves. That is why we appreciate the government’s commitment to ensure that those ITPs with strong reserves will be able to ensure their funding reserves stay within their regions,” says Mrs Travers.
EIT also supports the strengthened focus on work-place and on-job training. This will enable EIT to be even more responsive to the needs of the region and employers. EIT also welcomes the commitment to Centres of Vocational Excellence, in particular, given the importance of primary industries in Hawke’s Bay.