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Wehner says NMIT supports the intention of the changes, but recognises there are likely to be significant changes around the country from 2020.
“As one of the top vocational providers in the country we will actively engage in the consultation process, and are encouraged by the Minister’s commitment to consult and listen to the sector, and those we deliver for,” Wehner says.
“We are particularly pleased that the proposal recommends regional delivery of vocational education. We believe expanding course delivery to more regions is the right direction for the sector,“ he says. “We also agree there should be more emphasis on vocational training that matches industry need. We have always thought this, and one of our strategic priorities is focused on active collaboration with industry. We have strong relationships with employers and sector leaders, so that we can continually provide qualifications that add value. Having one organisation putting more emphasis on this by building closer linkages with businesses throughout the country, will potentially mean the sector can be more flexible to industry changes.
“We also welcome the understanding in the proposal that the sector is really important to school leavers, as well as for existing workers looking for lifetime learning.
“It would also be good to have more clarity about what each institution and what industry training organisations offer. The proposal to redefine roles would undoubtedly ensure the teaching skill base is where it should be.
“The proposal for a unified educational funding system also appears sensible.
“The impact of a single New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology is something we still need to understand better, but we anticipate it is likely to have significant implications,” he says. “Once we have had a chance to read the proposal’s detail, we will begin our own consultation over the next six weeks to inform our submission about the proposed changes. We will be working on this alongside our staff, students, iwi, regional schools, employers and partners and local government, and others.”
NMIT CEO Liam Sloan says how this announcement impacts on current team members and learners is a crucial consideration.
“Once we have looked at the proposal’s details over the coming days, we will have a better understanding of what it means to NMIT and the regions we serve so well,” Sloan says.
“What is really important to reiterate today is that nothing changes for our committed team members while this proposal is being worked through, or for our existing learners and those looking to enrol in 2019,” says Sloan. “We will be working closely with all our team members and learners about what our future looks like, if this proposal is rolled out after 2020.”
Wehner says he encourages submissions on the proposals. Submissions close on March 27, 2019.
For all information about the Minister’s proposed changes, including useful fact sheets and the consultation documents, go here:
For media enquiries contact Liam Sloan