Students to Speak Out for Education

Press Release – NZUSA

Student leaders and tertiary students will be supporting Monday afternoon’s ‘Speak Up for Education’ rally in central Wellington. Students to Speak Out for Education

Student leaders and tertiary students will be supporting Monday afternoon’s ‘Speak Up for Education’ rally in central Wellington.

“We support this event because it’s time to return to the issues that matter – the education we provide for our children and grandchildren, and investing in people so we have a better future for all,” says NZUSA Co-President David Do.

“We are proud of our education system – it has a long history in Aotearoa/New Zealand and leads the world in many ways. The community values and supports public education, and we can do much better if we invest properly in it. But it is under attack from underfunding, privatisation, and other moves to undermine public education,” says Do.

Key threats to public tertiary education include:

• The rising cost of education. Fees are higher than ever before, and student debt has hit $12 billion. • Hundreds of thousands of students next year must continue to borrow to live because they cannot get basic income support through a student allowance. • New Zealand is falling behind the rest of the world when it comes to investment. The tertiary sector has seen courses cut, scholarships slashed, departments downsized, and staff sacked over the past few years, while student numbers and student hardship rise. The independent voice of students will be undermined next year due to ACT’s legislation (supported by National) to end universal membership of students’ associations.

“All governments should prioritise and resource public education fairly so that everyone can access a high-quality, publicly-funded, publicly-owned education system. Our representatives in Parliament should implement policies which enhance and improve public education,” says NZUSA Co-President Max Hardy.

“We must stand up and fight for an education system we can all be proud of. This election we have choices on whether the party we vote for will support and strengthen this,” says Hardy.

“We encourage students and young people to ensure they are enrolled, informed, and voting this election. People can learn more about where the parties stand on tertiary education by reading our Guide to Voting at www.demandabetterfuture.org.nz,” concludes Do.

Note: The ‘Stand Up For Education’ rally is being organised by the Tertiary Education Union, and will be at 5pm at Cuba Mall. NZUSA representatives, including the Co-Presidents, will be participating and speaking at the rally.

NZUSA is the national representative body for tertiary students and has been advocating on student issues since 1929.

ENDS

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