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Another policy to be proud of

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, February 1st, 2016 - 283 comments
Categories: education, labour, leadership, tertiary education - Tags: , ,

Labour has had its ups and downs since 2008. But one thing that they have done consistently is roll out big bold policies. KiwiBuild. NZ Power. Capital gains tax. Each of these seized the agenda and helped shaped the national debate on important topics.

Labour has done it again with The Working Futures Plan – three years free tertiary education. It isn’t perfect but it’s a great start, a move towards addressing the injustice of inter-generational debt. Along with Labour taking a clear stance in opposing the TPP, it’s been a good week for lefites, and a good start to 2016.

So thank you Labour for another policy to be proud of! We’ll be talking about this one long after everyone has forgotten the highlight of Key’s speech (a U-tun on the City Rail Link).

One thing you can be sure of is that 90% of those who oppose this policy will have received a free tertiary education themselves back in the day. Now they want to deny a younger generation the same right (and pocket a tax cut instead). Shame on them all.


Aaaaand, right on cue, Steven Joyce was wetting himself on Twitter yesterday…

https://twitter.com/rorymccourt/status/693613881227227136

283 comments on “Another policy to be proud of”

  1. TepidSupport 1

    I love the idea of three years’ free tertiary education. I have some questions however:
    1) What controls will be in place to stop tertiary providers increasing costs at taxpayers expense?
    2) How will this be funded, i.e increased taxes/ increased debt/ targeted spending (cuts elsewhere)? And how long before we see the return on this investment?
    3) What will we determine/ agree will be the measure of whether this is a successful policy?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      1. It wouldn’t be an expense it would be an investment. Taxpayers who whinge and bleat about such things are anti-social fools.

      2. Investments yield returns that can be ploughed back into more investments. Citizens who don’t understand these basic facts are probably low-life ACT voters anyway.

      3. One thing is certain: the whinging bleating anti-social ACT types will say it’s a failure no matter what. Meanwhile, the rest of us can feel proud of rejecting their bleating whinging drivel with ridicule and contempt.

      • TepidSupport 1.1.1

        With respect OAB, I’m not even close to an ACT supporter.
        I’m in support of this idea as I stated initially, I just have those questions- that if answered with some fact rather than your condescending assumptive default- could be helpful.
        I see myself as a middle income “swing voter” and policies like these could swing voters back to Labour… As long as questions such as I previously posted can be answered…

        • BM 1.1.1.1

          The most important take away is free stuff, so don’t bother yourself with the details, remember , free stuff.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1.1.1

            No, it isn’t. It would be paid for from taxation, just like bribes to Saudi human rights criminals and the local money-laundering industry.

            • BM 1.1.1.1.1.1

              This policy is supposed to be paid for out of proposed tax cuts.

              What happens if the economy deteriorates and the money available for tax cuts is not there, where’s the money coming from?

              Are Labour going to borrow more or raise taxes?

              • (reset) argument number 14 – fail
                argument number 15 – attempt

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                I’d like them to raise taxes, and given that Labour-led governments always run the economy more competently than the bought trash you shill for, they may not even have to do that.

                I see Triple Dipton’s revenue assumptions were proved to be bullshit. Again.

              • Rob

                It would be very hard for them to borrow more than English and Key

          • Incognito 1.1.1.1.2

            Disingenuous comment. The Government invests up to 3 years of funding and the recipient invests time & effort to achieve a pass rate that enables continuation of the Government investment in years 2 & 3.

            You can call it a Public-Private Partnership if that makes you feel better 😉

            • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1.1.2.1

              😆

              But, but, but, they haven’t paid their dues at Cabinet Club! No fair! You’ll destroy the whole bribery market if you’re not careful!

        • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1.2

          I answered them. I’m sure the Labour Party would answer them differently. However, (so far as I’m aware) all the policy details are in Little’s speech. Have you read it? Your question 2 suggests that you haven’t. Why not start there?

          I note that you are implying you voted for the bought party: how much detail did you get of their “policies” before giving them your support? None. It was none, because they released precisely none. Can you see how that might undermine your self-proclaimed sincerity?

          How would you prevent tertiary institutions from fraudulently inflating costs to the taxpayer? Do you see that as a difficult task, given that fraud is a crime?

          • weka 1.1.1.2.1

            They’re actually reasonable questions OAB, and there will be many people wondering similar things who won’t be able to get past your personal need to make everything a rabid lesson in blame, or get to understand what the issues are.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1.2.1.1

              Question 1 is a blatant red herring: overcharging in this context would be fraud, and since Hekia Parata won’t have any say in the matter, fraud won’t work.

              Question 2 is answered in Little’s speech. How “reasonable” is it to be terribly concerned and yet fail to read the only information available to date?

              If question 3 was authored by someone “reasonable” it must be assumed that they have the capacity to “reason” it out for themselves. I’d measure success by whether the bought party gets reelected, and whether student debt is eliminated. No doubt that’s too “tepid” for some 🙄

              • weka

                I know you think that the only people here are you and the person you are attacking, but I’m looking at all the people reading who have heard some news yesterday about the policy and are wondering similar things. Your rapid approach is just going to make those people go elsewhere for their information, and where do you think they will go?

                Question 1 is a blatant red herring: overcharging in this context would be fraud, and since Hekia Parata won’t have any say in the matter, fraud won’t work.

                I don’t understand how it’s a red herring, nor why it would be fraud. Are you expecting mind reading now?

                Question 2 is answered in Little’s speech. How “reasonable” is it to be terribly concerned and yet fail to read the only information available to date?

                Actually that one is pretty easy. Most people don’t have the same relationship with social media as political junkies do. They get their initial information from the MSM and might come here for more. Yes they should read the speech, but if they don’t have time, their questions aren’t that hard to answer. I know I’ve been directed to links that are meant to answer my questions and simply don’t, so there’s always the potential frustration and time wasting from that.

                Some people are just better getting their information from a conversation.

                And of course, you didn’t tell them to go read the speech, you jsut gave them some completely irrelevant clever dick soundbite that just obscures the issues.

                If question 3 was authored by someone “reasonable” it must be assumed that they have the capacity to “reason” it out for themselves. I’d measure success by whether the bought party gets reelected, and whether student debt is eliminated. No doubt that’s too “tepid” for some

                Ah, yes, everyone has to live up to your personal standard of what is intelligence, and stupid people need not apply. Fuck that elitism.

                And again, you didn’t actually answer the question, but instead attacked the person asking. Bravo.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  I don’t think our new contributor is stupid, Weka. I think they’re insincere, and engaged in transparent concern trolling. You’ve got time for that? Bravo.

                  • weka

                    Yes, I know that’s what you think. What I’m doing is pointing out that how you respond to that has effects that I think are unwarranted.

                    Plus, what if you are wrong? What if the person is actually a swing voter and is actually not that clear about the policy. Maybe they’re lazy, maybe they didn’t have time to read the post yesterday. Maybe they are being an arse, but are still a swing voter who has the potential to change. You treating every person that turns up that looks to you like a troll as a troll suggests that you believe you are infallible or that you don’t care about the collateral damage.

                    On the days that you are here a lot, you have as much effect on how conversations go as CV does. Not that I’m comparing the content to CV, but in terms of the quality of the thread and what kinds of conversations can be had, too often ones like this one today just turn into cliquey echo chamber bitching. Often entertaining when it’s you, or McFlock or Rhinocrates, so it’s not all bad. But the relentlessness of the bickering is not only tedious, it undermines the left here doing something constructive.

                    edit, I’d have to go back and look, but I don’t remember you always being like this. In the past you seemed to have more of a balance between the troll-baiting comments and the contructive ones.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  PS: the assumption of “reasonable” is all yours. Apparently I don’t meet your standards.

          • Ovid 1.1.1.2.2

            How would you prevent tertiary institutions from fraudulently inflating costs to the taxpayer? Do you see that as a difficult task, given that fraud is a crime?

            Universities, polytechs and wananga are audited all the time. I think it’s a fair point in respect of private training enterprises. I would assume there’d be an auditing process already in place if they receive money via student loans, though.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1.2.2.1

              Personally I wouldn’t fund private courses at all. It’s a lot more efficient for education to be provided as an appropriately resourced public service.

              I doubt Labour will go that far without some serious lobbying but.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Personally I wouldn’t fund private courses at all. It’s a lot more efficient for education to be provided as an appropriately resourced public service.

                QFT

        • weka 1.1.1.3

          TS, just ignore OAB, he’s got a a pretty quick trigger finger and tends to overreact.

          I’d suggest changing your pseudonym. TepidSupport comes across as a bit disingenuous and is likely to get you more negative reactions. When you change your name, your first comment will go into moderation again.

    • Jenny Kirk 1.2

      Well TepidSupport – it took almost 30 years for people to wake up to the fact that student loans are not a good thing for building an educated society – instead it built more debt, put housing out of reach for young people, and sent our educated young people overseas – so maybe it will take almost 30 years to fully show its beneficial effects !

      So you’ll just have to wait to see whether this is a successful policy or not.

      Meanwhile – listen to Andrew Little to find some of the answers to your queries 1 & 2

      • BM 1.2.1

        It’s not a good idea forcing people to have to do tertiary education.

        Basic jobs requiring a 3 year course/degree to even make it past the first cv cut.

        That’s the real problem

        • McGrath 1.2.1.1

          True. I needed an honours degree to make the cut for my first job back in the day as a bank teller. In reality, all you needed was the ability to count.

          • BM 1.2.1.1.1

            Yes, a friend of mine started as a bank teller.

            All he needed was school cert.

            • Colonial Viper 1.2.1.1.1.1

              I know of 19 year olds who are bank tellers. They don’t have honours degrees (or any degrees whatsoever).

            • Stuart Munro 1.2.1.1.1.2

              The bloke who started Samsung got no secondary schooling. There wasn’t any about.

              Education needs a bit of a reset in places – much of it is not as useful as it might be.

              • McGrath

                Degrees need to be relavent to the country’s needs such as engineering. Churning out 100’s of gender studies degrees basically guarantees unemployment and is a waste of taxpayer funds.

                • McFlock

                  Or one could argue that it churns out hundreds of people with an understanding of structural power dynamics, a passion for addressing them, the tenacity to finish what they started three years previously, and the ability to put their ideas down on paper in a structured and
                  coherent way.

                  Some of those directly contribute to employability pretty much anywhere. Others less so, but there’s still a public good in having people with that sort of knowledge.

                • Doogs

                  No, no, no they don’t!

                  Look, educating people to a higher level is never a waste. It gives people insights into new areas of understanding, teaches them a wider perspective on life, trains analytical think and all of these are good.

                  I said it before on another thread – education from 2 to 22 needs be consecutive, complementary, layered for better uptake and above all aimed at rounding people into thinkers.

                  This government simply has no understanding of the value of real education. The fuck around with it at every level. It’s social engineering of the worst kind.

                  They don’t want people, they want widgets to fit the grand neo-liberalist plan. Little’s policy is a good step in the right direction. We all know that Donkers will purloin the idea, but only after some serious polling and a strategy from Crosby Textor.

        • weka 1.2.1.2

          BM, you vote for the people that created that situation so you can’t really complain about it.

        • Incognito 1.2.1.3

          Disingenuous comment #2. Nobody is forced to do such a thing. Similarly, nobody is forced to take ‘free’ ECE, nobody is forced to use the SuperGold Card or public healthcare, etc.; these things are optional – you know, free choice and all that. There is no force or coercion! In any case, Labour’s proposal is for up to 3 years that does not have to be used concomitantly.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.4

          It’s not a good idea forcing people to have to do tertiary education.

          Our society actually requires all of our people doing tertiary education. It’s not the 19th century any more where basic maths and literacy would get you through your life.

          Everyone is going to need to be retrained at some point in their life. Some people will need to be retrained several times. In fact, it’s probably better to say that education is an ongoing requirement and this courses should be freely available to support that.

    • weka 1.3

      I love the idea of three years’ free tertiary education. I have some questions however:
      1) What controls will be in place to stop tertiary providers increasing costs at taxpayers expense?

      I don’t know, but there was some good discussion about this in the thread under the post about Little’s speech. Looks like there are various options.

      2) How will this be funded, i.e increased taxes/ increased debt/ targeted spending (cuts elsewhere)? And how long before we see the return on this investment?

      That is explained in Little’s speech. Have you read it?

      3) What will we determine/ agree will be the measure of whether this is a successful policy?

      If by success you mean people getting a tertiary education, then that’s pretty simple, there will be people getting a tertiary education. Pretty sure we already measure that.

      • TepidSupport 1.3.1

        Cheers Weka.
        Appreciate the response.
        I would hope that the unions wouldn’t provide too much pressure for Labour to fund the tertiary providers anymore than they’ve costed or is absolutely needed is all…
        I know he states this would be funded by current “headroom” in govt accounts but Im unsure what will get reprioritised if tax take reduces etc- especially if Littles position on TPP not bringing much benefit to NZ is accurate?
        I guess we could measure the success by the number of people with tertiary study getting employment and how quickly avg incomes rise (without need for legislation).

        (BTW- my handle/ name is my position on politics as no party has my ‘blind support’ but will gain my vote based on their performance or policies on balance)

        Thanks again for your response

        • One Anonymous Bloke 1.3.1.1

          will gain my vote based on their performance or policies on balance

          That’s a no-brainer then: the National Party don’t provide policy details, and their track record is inferior by all measures (unemployment, value of wages, the GINI, per-capita GDP, corruption, the rule of law, human rights etc etc.) across many decades.

          The only way they can get elected is to tell lies.

          • righty right 1.3.1.1.1

            national don’t have any policy beyond theft looting incompetence and lies blame divert deflect deny distract thats about it

    • pat 1.4

      1) What controls will be in place to stop tertiary providers increasing costs at taxpayers expense?

      what controls are there now?….remember although students pay currently it is only a portion of the cost…it is subsidised by the taxpayer currently

      2) How will this be funded, i.e increased taxes/ increased debt/ targeted spending (cuts elsewhere)? And how long before we see the return on this investment?

      what form of return are you concerned about? financial, societal or personal?

      3) What will we determine/ agree will be the measure of whether this is a successful policy?

      that will depend on your answer to 2)

    • Rob 1.5

      With respect to question 3
      Most of us who got free tertiary education in the past can be assessed to see how we contributed to society
      Please excuse Joyce in this

  2. Paul 2

    The corporate media starts to diss the policy.

    The Herald’s sub-editor who wrote the headline ‘Labour free study plan worries unis’, can add his/her name to the roll of shame, as it focuses on the words of one person in the education world who questions the policy, while ignoring all the positive feedback from the educational world.
    If you read the actual article, there are many in the University world who think the policy is great; it’s just Chris Whelan, who doesn’t.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11582690
    Chris Whelan is her source for doubts.
    Here is his bio. Make your own conclusions about him.
    http://www.universitiesnz.ac.nz/node/732

    • Paul 2.1

      Chris Whelan getting around spreading the doubt.

      http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player/201787562

    • gsays 2.2

      what would be great if there was another announcement in 10 days to a fortnights time, that has the tories biting back.

      not too big or radical, just something to keep labour leading the narrative and having the others reacting.

      have it released just as the national’s pollsters are releasing their results.
      so you stay ahead of the ‘wave’.
      controlling the framing of any discussion, rather than spending too much time negating (opposing) nationals performance.

    • Incognito 2.3

      I don’t have a problem with constructive criticism if that is what Whelan is giving [I haven’t read the NZH link]. Labour’s idea has merit but the details still need to be worked out. Obviously, it needs to be part of a larger package, which it will be.

    • alwyn 2.4

      That student they quoted at the end of the story can’t be right can he?
      “I’m from a middle-income family, my parents are just above the cut-off for a student loan, but don’t have the surplus to pay anything to my education.”
      There aren’t any income limitations on parents for him to get a student loan, to the best of my belief.
      What on earth can he be talking about.
      http://studylink.govt.nz/student-loan/who-can-get-it/index.html

      • Draco T Bastard 2.4.1

        There aren’t any income limitations on parents for him to get a student loan, to the best of my belief.

        I suspect that the student was talking about the Student Allowance which available only to those without support. Rather stupid idea really but it’s not surprising that National brought it in.

  3. Ad 3

    A great and well received start.
    Twitter and msm loving it.
    Puts education into politics – long overdue.
    Effect us focusing on the least-mobile poor. That’s solid.

    Does consign everyone 19 or over who’s done some course to get nothing from it.

    But that makes it future-focused politics.

    Happy to forego my next tax cut for this one.

    • Karen 3.1

      “Does consign everyone 19 or over who’s done some course to get nothing from it.”

      Do you really think that making tertiary education more affordable only benefits those able to get it? Do you not recognise the benefit to society in general making education available to a greater number of people? How about those with student loans who are still trying to pay off their student loans who have children – don’t you think they will be grateful they don’t also have to save for their own kids education?

  4. Keith 4

    I do expect National to bastardise this policy if they get a sniff that it may win votes.

    First it’s the Joyce fire and brimstone bullshit (to early for the polls and focus group scripts for the Nats to read from) along with sundry stooges and lickspitles quoted in the corporate media predicting armageddon (aka pro TPPA if it doesn’t go ahead) but if that fails, bring a “policy” out that gives the appearance of being very similar but in the confusing and vague wording theirs will be an empty misleading fraud.

    How do i know this, 7 years of watching these parasites cling to power.

  5. Paul 5

    It will be interesting to see how the Managing Director of ‘New Zealand’s most successful corporate and public affairs consultancy’ Matthew Hooton spins on 9 to Noon today.
    I would imagine his corporate sponsors don’t like government’s getting in the way of privatised tertiary education.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon
    http://www.exceltium.com/about
    http://www.exceltium.com/team/matthew

  6. Lanthanide 6

    All-in-all, I don’t like this policy.

    Guyon interviewed Little on RNZ this morning and asked some questions. Labour are expecting an increase in the number of students as a result of it, and their modelling suggests that they’ll be funding $3,200 per student per year for course fees. Average university fees are already at $4,000 per year so right off the bat their $1.2B figure seems too little. He said they’ll fund any course at all, so engineering and other courses that have fees around $5k or more per year further through this figure off. There’s no funding cap proposed whatsoever, so actual costs can easily balloon larger than their current guesstimates. There’s also no bonding, so kids can get an education, paid for by the taxpayer, and bugger off to Australia.

    Another silly aspect of this policy is that it’s all about “retraining”, yet it is not open to anyone who has previously achieved a post-secondary qualification. So people like myself are NOT eligible to retrain under this policy, but do have to pay the taxes toward it. Getting an MBA is something that holds modest interest for me, and having the cost of that paid by the taxpayer would be quite a large incentive for me to do it. But I’m not eligible.

    Everyone who already has a student loan gets nothing from this policy – there will be people graduating in 2018 with big student loans who will be working to pay them off in 2025, while young kids get to go to university, get the same degree, and have no (or much less) loan from it. Obviously policies have to kick in at some time, but the fact that the 2018 graduate is ineligible to ever take up this policy, even though they’re probably as vulnerable as the 2028 graduate to losing their job due to technology advances.

    It is a bold policy that will likely win Labour some kudos. But it’s also going to be pretty easy for National to attack, and for them to come up with a much cheaper but still good policy that the taxpaying voter will happily settle for (Labour-lite), which comes with the side bonus of “safe-pair-of-hands” English still being in charge of the budget.

    • Paul 6.1

      ‘All-in-all, I don’t like this policy.’

      Nor would Key.
      Nor would Brash.
      Nor would Seymour.
      Nor would Hide.
      Nor would Farrar.
      Nor would Hooton.
      Nor would Jordan Williams.

      Interesting bedfellows you have.

    • BM 6.2

      +1
      You do get the feeling this hasn’t been thought through in any great detail.

    • b waghorn 6.3

      Isn’t the whole point of this policy about helping people who’s job is likely to vanish in the next 20 years up skill so they can remain a productive part of society??
      The fact that most of your post is a winge with me me me written all over speaks volumes of your view of the world.

      • BM 6.3.1

        Don’t be a tool, Lanthanide makes some very valid points.

        • b waghorn 6.3.1.1

          Bullshit lanthinide is usually some one I look to for an insightful comment but this policy isn’t about the already educated and successful getting to follow their dreams ,its about helping people who need it.

          • BM 6.3.1.1.1

            Why do you need to have tertiary education?

            Back when I left school, school cert was all you needed for the vast majority of jobs, these days you need a degree to wash dishes.

            Education has become a very profitable industry and it’s created a environment where people have no choice but do these expensive, time consuming courses.

            • marty mars 6.3.1.1.1.1

              is it compulsory – no

              back to one of your other disingenuous madeuptostir arguments please

            • b waghorn 6.3.1.1.1.2

              Compare nz to some of the low/no education countries in Africa and come back to me with your findings on the value of education.!

            • Draco T Bastard 6.3.1.1.1.3

              You do realise that one of the reasons why people now need to get degrees to get a job is because the job no longer does that training don’t you?

              Then there’s the fact that more and more jobs really do need higher education to start with.

            • Doogs 6.3.1.1.1.4

              Oh dear, I thought I’d explained it.

              No education, properly provided and genuinely taken, is a waste. Only philistines believe anything to the contrary.

              • BM

                Explained what?

                I’m all for education, just not most of the shit they’re pushing now.

                Putting people 10’s of thousands of dollars in debt just so they can get a bit of skin in the “get a job” game.

                Where experience and on the job training is considered far less valuable than some shitty 3 year diploma/degree which just teaches you the basics at best.

                It’s so arse about face.

                • McFlock

                  You sound bitter, BM.

                  Did you miss out on a job to someone with actual qualifications?

                  • BM

                    No, but I know of a few very talented people trapped at their current jobs because they don’t hold a piece of paper yet their skill level far exceed some kid who’s just completed some shitty degree/diploma.

                    Btw “actual” qualification mean shit in the real world, not that you’d know.

                    • McFlock

                      like you’d know what I know.

                      The thing about qualifications as opposed to work experience is that they are translatable from workplace to workplace. Having all the experience in the world doesn’t matter a damn if you can’t demonstrate it to a prospective employer. Hell, demonstrate it to an education provider to credit prior experience towards the bit of paper your mates never bothered getting.

                      Free employment market and all that. I thought you tories liked that? Or is it only bad if a tory’s mates can’t adapt to the changing market? Are people who actually go for additional training after school getting in the way of your tory sense of entitlement for you and your mates?

                • “Where experience and on the job training is considered far less valuable than some shitty 3 year diploma/degree which just teaches you the basics at best.”

                  what area of work are you blatting on about because in my experience what you say is just not true – another rightie fantasy I think

                • Doogs

                  See, you’re not looking at the long game, are you? You HAVE to take the whole spectrum from 2 to 22 into account. If there is a failure anywhere along the line, it’s like the hackneyed old “weak-link-in-the-chain” story. Old hat, but still true. The system must have integrity from ECE to Uni or it doesn’t work.

                  This is where the crafty old Natzis are fuckin’ things up. Remember, all they want are compliant widgets. Nothing else suits their wily little schemes. (heh, heh, heh, . . . .)

      • Lanthanide 6.3.2

        “Isn’t the whole point of this policy about helping people who’s job is likely to vanish in the next 20 years up skill so they can remain a productive part of society??”

        Yes. There are a lot of people that got BA’s from university (not me), and they work in jobs that are just as likely to vanish as people who didn’t go to university.

        But because they got a BA first, even if it ended up being completely useless at landing them a good job, they now don’t qualify under the new policy, even though their colleague does.

        • b waghorn 6.3.2.1

          I would suggest to you that if someone with a ba was up against someone without and that was the only difference between them ,were going for a job in an unfamiliar field to both of them the one with would 9 times out of ten get the job.

          • Lanthanide 6.3.2.1.1

            Yes, if that were the *only* difference between them.

            But how often does that happen?

            Lots of people with BA’s work in retail and hospitality. Experience in those fields counts for far more than a BA does. So a 2-year barista up against a 1-year barista with a BA, who would you hire?

            • b waghorn 6.3.2.1.1.1

              Shit your in danger of proving bm right that we’re an over educated country.
              Personally I’d hire the one I liked given your scenario .

    • One Anonymous Bloke 6.4

      What a dismal defeatist opinion.

    • alwyn 6.5

      “Getting an MBA is something that holds modest interest for me, and having the cost of that paid by the taxpayer would be quite a large incentive for me to do it. But I’m not eligible.”
      Neither would anyone else, I wouldn’t think. You’ll have a lot of company.
      Didn’t he say that it was only undergraduate study that was going to qualify? Wouldn’t an MBA be a graduate degree?
      Does anyone whose done one of these in New Zealand have an opinion?

      • Lanthanide 6.5.1

        Yes, an MBA would be a post-graduate degree. So yeah, that’s ruled out naturally by the policy.

        Which I guess I’m ok with, since it’s really aimed at people who don’t have any education at all to up-skill.

        But I still think it’s silly that I wouldn’t qualify to do another under-graduate degree with this policy. It’s highly unlikely that I would – but to not have the option means this policy is nothing but a tax on me.

        • alwyn 6.5.1.1

          Don’t get too carried away. I ended up with 2 undergraduate degrees, 2 honours degrees and a PhD.
          Now I amuse myself in my spare time poking sticks into anthills on blogs like this one.
          Please don’t do an MBA though. I knew a number of people who did MBAs at the Sloan School of Management. Smart as hell but generally prats. Keep well clear.

    • “So people like myself are NOT eligible to retrain under this policy, but do have to pay the taxes toward it. Getting an MBA is something that holds modest interest for me, and having the cost of that paid by the taxpayer would be quite a large incentive for me to do it. But I’m not eligible.”

      Isn’t that a bit self centered? Surely it would be good for the person used as an example in the speech, notwithstanding the (pretty valid) arguments you make about aspects of the funding and political realities of being there with the gnats.

      • Lanthanide 6.6.1

        A lot of the voting base is self-centered. That’s why we are where we are.

        Hoping these people will vote against their direct self-interest (this policy is nothing but a tax on me as I don’t qualify to use it) isn’t a great way to get them onboard.

        If Labour just made it up-to-3-years undergraduate study free for *everyone* one time in their life, then it’d be a fair policy.

        The vast majority of people who have degrees would not take the opportunity up – but at least they wouldn’t feel resentful about not even getting the choice.

    • Incognito 6.7

      Labour’s proposal is not aimed at just university degrees; some tertiary courses will cost less and some more than the average figure of $3,200 per student per year.

      The figure of $1.2 billion is Labour’s current best (?) estimate for 2025, which is a whole 9 years away. Too easy to attack that one; what about the cost estimate of $265 million for 2019?

      So people like myself are NOT eligible to retrain under this policy, but do have to pay the taxes toward it.

      I don’t understand this argument. Is it a bad proposal because you personally cannot directly benefit from it or because it has certain eligibility criteria? Should everything be ‘user-pays’?

      I agree that the transition period and initial phasing in (2018/19) will have to be carefully handled.

      But it’s also going to be pretty easy for National to attack, and for them to come up with a much cheaper but still good policy

      Did you inadvertently just admit that Labour’s is good policy?

      • Lanthanide 6.7.1

        Labour’s proposal is not aimed at just university degrees; some tertiary courses will cost less and some more than the average figure of $3,200 per student per year.

        The figure of $1.2 billion is Labour’s current best (?) estimate for 2025, which is a whole 9 years away. Too easy to attack that one; what about the cost estimate of $265 million for 2019?

        Yip, good point. So Labour will need to hammer this point home, because Guyon already characterised it in terms of university this morning, and Joyce started doing that yesterday. Once Farrar’s polling has come back, they’ll know the best way to divide and conquer on this issue, and focussing on the cost is surely going to be in their top 3 responses.

        I don’t understand this argument. Is it a bad proposal because you personally cannot directly benefit from it or because it has certain eligibility criteria? Should everything be ‘user-pays’?

        I think the eligibility criteria are silly, since it’s supposed to be about *re*-training, yet they’re deliberately excluding people who have formal training.

        Did you inadvertently just admit that Labour’s is good policy?

        Not at all. I said that National could come up with a policy that, while being less expensive than Labour’s, is still a good policy. Contrasted with many of National’s policies that are less expensive than Labour’s, but bad.

        • Incognito 6.7.1.1

          Thanks.

          When the Government invests taxpayers’ money there will have to be quality controls and thus eligibility criteria. If there weren’t any it would be like writing out blank cheques and handing out money willy-nilly, which is not too dissimilar to ’untargeted’ tax cuts.

          A “silly” proposal is not necessarily a “bad” one, is it? To me, it seems a silly criticism to call something silly unless you cannot think of a stronger argument in which case I’d keep quiet or just look silly 😉

          BTW, we pay tax full-stop, not “toward it” whatever the specific “it” is. This is a misconception that many people (and mainly of the right) seem to carry: taxes are to fund all government spending regardless of the specifics.

          • Lanthanide 6.7.1.1.1

            It’s silly in the sense that Labour themselves are calling it a “retaining” policy, but then they prevent people who have “trained” from “retraining”.

            So actually, it’s a “first time training” policy, yet they are calling it a “retraining” policy. Silly.

            BTW, we pay tax full-stop, not “toward it” whatever the specific “it” is. This is a misconception that many people (and mainly of the right) seem to carry: taxes are to fund all government spending regardless of the specifics.

            Yes, and I’d prefer the government use the tax money for other things, like health or other educational initiatives. Or failing that, a tax cut.

            • Incognito 6.7.1.1.1.1

              I am not sure where you get that narrow view from regarding “retraining” and “first time training”? [I assume the first time you wrote the word “retaining” [sic] in your comment you made a typo] Confused people confuse people.

              As far as I can tell from Little’s speech the funding is aimed at both training and retraining:

              Skills, knowledge, training and retraining — they are the currency of the future of work.

              I am announcing that the next Labour government will invest in three years of free training and education after high school throughout a person’s life.

              Three years of free skills training, of apprenticeships or higher education right across your working life.

              Everything you need to train and retrain as the world changes.

              With this policy, they can retrain for a new industry, with new skills for a new job.

            • TepidSupport 6.7.1.1.1.2

              A tax cut is the last thing we need right now I believe.
              Isn’t rates are low (good for borrowers), petrol and CPI is low, economy by and large appears to be delivering..
              We need more spending on education & health, also more targeted support to those on low fixed income- benefits & Nat Super.
              If any tax breaks come at all, I’d like to see those on less than $30k pa receive full tax break.
              Not sure how that would cost govt though…

              • Lanthanide

                I agree, we don’t want tax cuts now.

                I’m just putting that in perspective – I think a tax cut would be better than this education policy, as it’s been presented.

                • Colonial Viper

                  National’s response is going to be tax cuts of course. Except for a regressive lift in GST probably…

    • Colonial Viper 6.8

      Lanth, I did not know some of the detail that you have analysed out here. Thanks for that.

      But I had figured out that for someone like me who has already spent years in education at a university level this policy was an absolute fizzer.

      And I don’t have children. But I will pay taxes towards yet another Labour policy which not only does not benefit me personally, but is IMO way way down on the priorities this nation needs to face up to.

      Average university fees are already at $4,000 per year so right off the bat their $1.2B figure seems too little. He said they’ll fund any course at all, so engineering and other courses that have fees around $5k or more per year further through this figure off.

      Wait until the private sector for-profit training providers hook into this system.

      Another silly aspect of this policy is that it’s all about “retraining”, yet it is not open to anyone who has previously achieved a post-secondary qualification.

      ***GOBSMACKED***

    • alwyn 6.9

      You say “Average university fees are already at $4,000 per year”
      You must have gone to a pretty cheap university by the sound of it.
      Otago already charges much more than that. Their figures, examples, are per 1EFTS which I take to mean what a typical full time student would have to pay in a year.
      They are from
      http://www.otago.ac.nz/study/fees/#examples

      “Tuition fees for Subject Categories (per 1.0 EFTS)

      Undergraduate (excl. Honours)

      Arts, Languages, Theology, Mathematics, Education $5,568.00
      Commerce, Teaching $5,317.00
      Law (excluding Honours) $6,211.00
      Computer Science, Design, Geography, Information Science, Music, Science $6,654.00
      Physical Education $6,654.00 – $7,692.00
      Health Sciences, Pharmacy, Surveying $7,692.00
      Dentistry $14,791.00
      Medicine $14,791.00
      Physiotherapy – Years 2 to 3 inclusive $6,654.00
      Physiotherapy – Year 4 $7,765.00 ”

      I can’t see anyone managing to only have fees of $4,000, can you?
      Anyone know whether Otago is particularly expensive?

        • alwyn 6.9.1.1

          That is so but it doesn’t have anything to do with what I said.

          To spell it out again.
          Lanthanide said “Average university fees are already at $4,000 per year”
          Note that he was specifically talking about the University fees and it is that remark I responded too.

          I thought that would have been clear by the first line of my comment.

          • McFlock 6.9.1.1.1

            Indeed.
            There’s a solid chance that Lanth either confused university with tertiary and got the average fees right, or got the university fees wrong, or whatever, when criticising the policy.

            But I like the way you’re grabbing with both hands the opportunity for a derail to discuss the average course fees of all universities using one example. Keep clawing at that parrot…

            • alwyn 6.9.1.1.1.1

              Give up laddie. You are just getting deeper and deeper.

              I chose Otago because I quickly found a page that gave a summary set of figures that should apply for a year of full time study.
              Auckland, where I started only seemed to give individual course fees.

              Now try reading the very last line of my original comment.
              “Anyone know whether Otago is particularly expensive?”
              Anyone who knows can answer. Can you do so?

              Did you really expect me to go through every University in the country, work out the whole range of fees, weight them by the number of students doing each course and then get an overall average for the country.
              All just to illustrate that Lanth’s numbers in one statement just might be a little low?
              You have a go and come up with a fully detailed number if you think I am wrong. I’ll bet you don’t though.

              • McFlock

                I don’t think you’re wrong.
                I think you’re irrelevant.
                There’s a difference.

                I think you’re purposefully being so because accurately reporting Otago fees is as close as you’re going to get to adequacy in your task of finding flaws in Labour’s proposal which isn’t even based on average university fees, let alone Otago fees.

                • alwyn

                  I wasn’t talking to you with my comment. I was talking to Lanthanide.
                  If you think I am irrelevant why do bother to keep pestering me with questions and comments? No replies will be forthcoming in the future. After all why should I waste your so, so precious time in making you read them.
                  Your 15 minutes are up McFlock.

                  • McFlock

                    awwww, polly want a cracker?

                    • alwyn

                      Shakespeare has, of course, the perfect description of your comments. When you say something sensible to me I will reply. When you simply rabbit on and make no sense I can quote the bard.

                      “McFlock’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
                      That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
                      And then is heard no more. It is a tale
                      Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
                      Signifying nothing”

                      Describes you to a T I’d say.

                    • McFlock

                      I don’t think you’ve really thought about what that quote means. You’ve basically just equated me to the sum of all human experience. I knew I was good, I didn’t know you thought I was that good, if such glory is fleeting like a candle flame.

                      Fucksake, you had the entire collected works of Shakespeare to go through, and you picked one of the most famous ruminations on the brevity of human existence to use as an insult? Good god, you could have called me a fustilarian or a coxcomb!

                      Personally, I find the occasional use for Robert Burns:

                      When —, deceased, to the devil went down,
                      ‘Twas nothing would serve him but Satan’s own crown;
                      Thy fool’s head, quoth Satan, that crown shall wear never;
                      I grant thou’rt as wicked, but not quite so clever.

                    • alwyn

                      Well there is always this interpretation of what it means. Seems to suit you doesn’t it?

                      “And people are just bad, stupid actors; shouting and running about and generally making a lot of noise and fuss but not much sense, and then they die anyway.
                      At the end he says, The story of life is just short and absurd, full of action and events, but, in the final analysis, completely meaningless”

                      A lot of noise and fuss but not much sense. McFlock exactly.
                      I think I’ll keep it for a reply to your inanities.
                      And Goodnight.

                    • McFlock

                      lol

                      So rather than reading the actual passage, you plagiarised a homework help site, but skipping the suggested answers until you found something along the lines of what you wanted, as written by “frizzyperm”.

                      Maybe that’s how you got the qualifications you claim.

                      night night.

                    • LOL – now THAT is funny

                  • but alwyn what about your anecdotes based on all your degrees and experience – don’t deprive us – that’s not fairrrrrrrr. Sure McFlock was correct but so what, that happens a lot on here for you doesn’t it, it’s no big thing.

      • Lanthanide 6.9.2

        I was repeating what Guyon Espiner said on RNZ this morning. I don’t know where he got his number from.

        When I went to uni, I think I was paying $4,400 per year for Bachelor of Science (majoring in Computer Science), at Canterbury.

  7. DH 7

    I don’t see anything to be proud of. All I see is more middle class welfare.

    We need more jobs, we don’t need more educated workers to fill jobs that don’t exist.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1

      🙄

      You must be right, because education never leads to new opportunities. Nothing is ever invented or discovered by universities. Critical thinking is useless. Everyone* knows that.

      *terms and conditions apply.

      • DH 7.1.1

        New opportunities for what? To charge me $350 an hour for lawyers fees? $150 an hour for the accountant? $100 for the Doctors visit? The dentist?

        Seriously, what point is there in increasing education levels if the jobs aren’t there for them? Not having a loan & interest to pay off will just send more Kiwis offshore.

        “Nothing is ever invented or discovered by universities. Critical thinking is useless. ”

        Right, the whole purpose of this is to increase the discoveries of universities. You might have an argument if this policy had addressed the funding required for that type of research.

        • vto 7.1.1.1

          “Seriously, what point is there in increasing education levels if the jobs aren’t there for them? ”

          You have a point there which is very minor as a factor to consider re education.

          However your point highlights a reality that society doesn’t need as many jobs anymore and so they are not created. You highlight the issue of universal income. A universal basic income, so everybody has a decent living whether they have said few jobs or not. Good on ya. I agree a UBI is becoming overdue in order that we provide for all members of society. There aint enough jobs to go around so the income from the nation needs spreading in a new and different manner. Jobs for income is so passe…

          • DH 7.1.1.1.1

            I disagree. The argument appears to be that if we as a nation supply a more educated workforce the jobs will come. Just exactly where they’ll come from no-one seems able to say. Maybe there’s a whole bunch of international sugar daddies out there just waiting for us to give them the workers they need?

            Targeted funding to fill current and predicted skills shortages is logical. Increasing grants to universities for research is rational. Blanket funding on the other hand doesn’t make a lot of sense to me.

            • BM 7.1.1.1.1.1

              TPPA

            • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1.1.1.1.2

              “No-one”.

              No-one apart from this lot.

              And these losers.

              It’s possible that there may be other people who’ve bothered to look. And think. Fucking academics.

              • DH

                Oh gee, you discovered how to use Google.

                If you can’t speak for yourself then move on.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Just exactly where they’ll come from no-one seems able to say

                  Stop talking shit, and I’ll stop flushing it down the toilet.

                  • DH

                    I should bow to your superior knowledge aye? You being the world’s foremost authority on the subject and all.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      As an alternative, why not try verifying your “facts” before you assert them?

                    • DH

                      What facts? I gave an opinion and I supported it with an argument.

                      You in reply just mouthed off & behaved in your usual wanker fashion.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Except that your entire argument is undermined by your assertion that “no-one seems able to say” where the jobs will come from.

                      In fact, there is extensive study on the matter, and therefore you need to concoct a new line of attack. Good luck with that.

                    • DH

                      By no means is it undermined. If it were true that blanket improvement of education levels brought more jobs then simple logic dictates we wouldn’t have seen the exodus of graduates the country has experienced.

                      Our own history undermines your position.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Is that what you reckon? Why don’t you get onto the OECD and tell them how they’ve got it all wrong?

                      Meanwhile, I’m sure you can’t imagine how lower debt levels among graduates might lead to a stronger economy, so I won’t even try.

                    • DH

                      You’ve lost me. Are you denying that many of our graduates are leaving the country to find work? If not then what’s your point?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      No, you’re asserting it because you need a new attack line and it’s the best you can come up with. Can you provide me with some supporting information that explicitly links higher education with permanent migration?

                      Nope? Better luck next time.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      The Establishment Left are similar to the Establishment Right in terms of their thinking on economics and jobs.

                      The basic principle is: government can be involved in providing training and providing education; but “the market” has to provide the jobs.

                      Both Left an Right have largely ignored the facts of history around how the NZ government created hundreds of thousands of jobs building rail, planting forests, constructing houses, etc. and can do so again.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Like building state houses for example. If only there were a left wing party that wanted to do that.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Like building state houses by giving loads of tax payers money to large private sector corporations determined to skim off as much of that money as possible as shareholder profits.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      It must suck to be a member of that party, enabling all that corporate mooching. Perhaps most of the members don’t see it that way or something.

                    • DH

                      “The Establishment Left are similar to the Establishment Right in terms of their thinking on economics and jobs.

                      The basic principle is: government can be involved in providing training and providing education; but “the market” has to provide the jobs.”

                      Looks to be one of those rare occasions our views converge CV. Had to happen sooner or later 😉

                      It’s a simple fact of life that not every person is academically inclined. Their talents lie elsewhere. There’s no shame in being good with your hands rather than the head and those people deserve the same sort of job opportunities, the same quality of life, as those who get lavished with expensive education.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      DH: 🙂

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.2

        You must be right, because education never leads to new opportunities. Nothing is ever invented or discovered by universities. Critical thinking is useless. Everyone* knows that.

        In your case, critical thinking does appear useless.

        DH is correct.

        Universities are serving society poorly at the moment, given the massive amounts of money they take up.

        Economics, marketing, banking, PR/communications and finance graduates are just a few of the types of discipline who more often than not go on to become cogs in the corporate machine damaging our future chances as a society.

        There are more pressing issues that Labour should have prioritised.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1.2.1

          🙄

          [citations desperately needed]

          • Colonial Viper 7.1.2.1.1

            It’s obvious to ordinary Kiwis that the billions put into our university system every year are having a poor payback to society as a whole.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1.2.1.1.1

              No, no, CV: you can speak for the masses when you can get them to vote for you. Until then, speak for yourself.

            • sabine 7.1.2.1.1.2

              yep, that is why the universities are empty.

              mate, seriously, get a dog or a cat or a hobby or anything/something to get you out of the funk that you are stuck in, cause bitter does not describe you well enough.

              • Colonial Viper

                yep, that is why the universities are empty.

                ?

                universities are not serving the needs of 21st century NZ. And they are taking up a huge amount of resources in doing that.

                • sabine

                  so what would you do if you were Andrew Little.

                  C’mon great Labour guy tell us what you would do to satisfy the needs of the 21st century, and your own standard of purity.

                  Because that is what you have become, a disgruntled purity troll. Nothing to add, but everything to poopoo. Is that really the very best you can do?
                  You should leave the labour party completely. You have so little regard for the Party , you have no use for the Party , you essentially you only hold membership to piss in the plate of all those that want to go ahead into the 21st century, while you are still stuck in 1980’s. Colonial Viper, so full of venom you poisoned yourself.
                  I feel sad for you as it must be very unpleasant to be as miserable as you come across.

                • Colonial Viper

                  What would I do if I were Andrew Little?

                  Dunno, enjoy the leadership role until end of 2017.

          • Stuart Munro 7.1.2.1.2

            The not obviously performing AUT is responsible for this technology.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wireless_power

        • McFlock 7.1.2.2

          You don’t approve of some BCom majors, therefore all university education is a waste?

          Sounds reasonable /sarc

    • miravox 7.2

      Is this policy only for university students, not trades, IT and apprenticeships?

      • Keith 7.2.1

        It is post college training and is not university exclusive as I understood it.

      • weka 7.2.2

        It’s for any tertiary education, and it’s starting to piss me off the number of lefties here who are assuming it’s all about university.

        • DH 7.2.2.1

          You could always try asking people about their assumptions weka, then you might not have such urges to get pissed off.

          • weka 7.2.2.1.1

            There’s nothing wrong with righteous anger mate. Why would I want to ask people about their assumption that tertiary education is university education?

      • Lanthanide 7.2.3

        Most of those IT diploma mills aren’t worth the paper they’re written on.

        • McFlock 7.2.3.1

          That’s not really true.
          The qualifications framework is reasonable, the trouble is that the education providers (especially private tertiary educators) tend to strongly imply that “graduates” will get the 1% job placements, rather than it being a decent certification to get an okay job.

          • Colonial Viper 7.2.3.1.1

            There aren’t that many “okay jobs” (paying at least $20/hr) out there.

            • McFlock 7.2.3.1.1.1

              Dude, seriously? Your only criteria for an okay job is a minimum income that many people would be lucky to have these days?

              How about a job that pays $5 an hour more than you’re currently getting, you’re not treated like shit by mediocre supervisors, you don’t smell of fryer grease even on your days off, it’s maybe even salaried rather than zero-hours casual, and it actually has some measure of stability or even career progression after a year or two?

              For a hero of the proletariat, your idea of “okay” is decidedly middle class. I might have an office job at the moment, but I remember what it was like when I constantly wondered how many hours I’d be able to scrabble together in shit jobs, and whether I’d pay my rent or just pay down the power bill debt that week. Damned near killed me, literally. My blood pressure has only come under control in the last few years.

              Or maybe I’m just talking about people who live in the real world, and you can read the Matrix and your silver spoon doesn’t really exist…

        • miravox 7.2.3.2

          There is that. Let’s see what Labour policy to improve quality is when they release it.

          Meanwhile I’m happy with 3 years of free Tertiary (does not equal only university) as a start.

    • Incognito 7.3

      You’ll see what you want to see.

      Many (but not all) jobs are changing; some are disappearing altogether and entirely new jobs will appear. This requires flexibility and adaptation of people.

      Did you read Little’s speech and the part about Future of Work?

      • DH 7.3.1

        “Did you read Little’s speech and the part about Future of Work?”

        I’m still digesting some of it, to be honest I’m not really that interested in tea leaf reading. The future is still to be written. Governments play a big role in shaping the future and, well, it can be whatever we want it to be really can’t it.

        Flexibility and retraining sounds all very nice, until you’re the one that has to retrain. How many working adults can survive without an income for 2, 3 or more years while they retrain after losing their job?

        • Incognito 7.3.1.1

          Yes, I agree, the future is uncertain but one ought to have goals, aspirations, dreams and the Government needs to plan for the future.

          You do realise that it is up to 3 years of funding that does not have to be used concomitantly, don’t you? A good & smart employer will hang on to a good & smart employee who’s willing to invest in his/her own future. This creates loyalty and also more certainty as both parties already have an established relationship. But I agree that partial or complete loss of income, even temporarily, could be a problem for some.

          • Colonial Viper 7.3.1.1.1

            Incognito, Labour’s policy does little except make an accounting change.

            Currently education institutions get $$$ via the student loan scheme. Under Labour’s plans they will get the same $$$ direct from the government.

            Doesn’t help the student live during study, and doesn’t give our underfunded educational institutions any more money.

            It’s primarily an accounting change.

            • Incognito 7.3.1.1.1.1

              I don’t know whether you’re correct as I have seen any details and accounting is not my forte in any case.

              However, Labour will initially fund it through the money that is earmarked by National for tax cuts so it does seem that they will be redirecting a lot of money towards tertiary education. This seems more than an “accounting change”, don’t you agree?

              Nevertheless, as far as I can tell the policy is not aimed at the institutions nor at living allowances and the likes; these are separate issues and so they should be IMO.

  8. alwyn 8

    Is there any date when Labour are going to release the details of the policy?
    At the moment there aren’t any and before being able to discuss it sensibly the fine print, rather than just the material in his speech are needed.
    Andrew talked about 3 years of free tertiary education for each person. What does he really mean.
    For example. If you leave school and do a 6 week course before starting a job is that one of your years?
    How about a six month full time course. Is that one of your years?
    It appears that a year full time at a University counts as one of those three years.
    What is the situation of someone who didn’t go to University when young but wants to get a qualification when they are 30. They have to do it part time so they do half the number of courses each year and take 6 years. Why are they going to be discriminated against? They cost the state the same after all. Why do they have to pay more?

    Does any one have any idea when the full specifications are going to be released? For that matter does anyone know whether there are any details yet or is this just a back of the envelope dream?

    • Heather Grimwood 8.1

      There is a readily available readily understandable factsheet on line. LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE instead of pinpricking.( The ability to do this comes with a good education).
      As well, many pinprickers ignore, intentionally or otherwise, that courses in many cases will be tailored to employment/ers requirements, a major point being that these requirements are likely to change even quite rapidly. Some will not have been dreamed of/envisaged presently.
      My eldest great-grandchild would benefit from three years free tertiary if Labour wins in 2017……WHICH IS MY OBJECTIVE as an unashamed activist.

      • alwyn 8.1.1

        Wow! Talk about being brainwashed. Do you have a picture of Andrew on your living room wall?
        Do you have a link for this factsheet? Google doesn’t come up with anything useful.

        “LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE instead of pinpricking”. Didn’t you ever learn that “The devil is in the detail”?
        Presumably you hold this opinion consistently do you? In that case can you tell me whether you have ever chastised someone who is trying to find a reason to oppose the TPPA because they are “pinprickers”. After all that nice Mr Groser said it was all fine and he, having given a Big Picture view should be believed.

        By the way do you really mean to use the phrase “pinpricker”? I would have thought you were trying to talk about “nitpicking”. What would I know though? After all, without knowing anything about me you seem to think I don’t have a good education.

        “The ability to do this comes with a good education”. I am hurt to the quick. My study at the best University in the world, at least in some rankings, was wasted.

        • Heather Grimwood 8.1.1.1

          Alwyn….too busy planting my late potato crop to answer everything. Most important though is that I did NOT say you were uneducated. I was referring to the benefits of critical thinking skills and wide frame -of-reference attained by higher education.
          I was really privileged to have been educated in critical thinking skills from earliest childhood and far from being brainwashed, am and have always been, a free thinker.
          Try labour.org.nz or Andrew’s facebook page, but I found the factsheet on several sites last night.

    • Paul 8.2

      Picking holes with nothing to positive to say about a policy trying to make tertiary education more accessible to people who are not wealthy.

      Like Key.
      Like Brash.
      Like Seymour.
      Like Hide.
      Like Farrar.
      Like Hooton.
      Like Jordan Williams.

      Interesting bedfellows you have.

      • alwyn 8.2.1

        “nothing to positive to say”. That is right. You’ll note that I had nothing negative to say either. They have not released any details at all about the policy so how can anyone, lacking a belief in the divine right of Andrew, give any opinion at all?
        Where are the details?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 8.2.1.1

          Hypocrite wants policy details. Votes National 🙄

          • alwyn 8.2.1.1.1

            Two errors in a single line. Is that a record?

            “Hypocrite wants policy details” Actually in is “Alwyn wants policy details”. And I totally reject your attempted slander.

            “Votes National”. Only at the moment. If you had read comments I have made previously you would see that in the last 12 elections it is 6 National, 5 Labour and 1 did not vote.

            I wish that Labour looked even tolerably capable of forming a Government but they don’t. That is not a healthy state for New Zealand. The haven’t sorted themselves out from the hopeless lot they were between 2005 and 2008.
            Every Government gets tired. Look at Muldoon in his third term, Bolger in his and Clark in her third term.
            Even if the Key Government does get tired though they still seem better that any Little led one.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 8.2.1.1.1.1

              🙄

              Hekia Parata, Steven Joyce, Paula Bennett, Triple Dipton. Nick Smith, Gerry Brownlee, Judith Collins. You need better attack lines.

              • alwyn

                Hmm.
                Looking at the corresponding people in the Labour ranks you have.
                Megan Woods, Chris Hipkins, Phil Twyford, Annette King, Nanaia Mahutu, Grant Robertson and Iain Lees-Galloway.
                Are you really sure you want to go into battle with that lot?

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Can I buy them at Cabinet Club? No? Well there’s a vast improvement before we even consider the one-on-one comparisons.

                  • McFlock

                    You never “buy” a nat. You only rent them.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      Very reasonable rates as well if you’re interested…

                    • McFlock

                      Nah. Their loyalty expires too quickly. As soon as you need them they forget they had lunch with you.

                      But they do seem to stand by their siblings and spouses quite loyally, planning promotional tours and dissolving democratic organisations and suchlike. I guess the only way for a nat to be reliably corrupt in your favour is to marry into their family…

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Just as well – you know once you’ve opened one it just doesn’t keep.

  9. Detrie 9

    Yes, it’s ironic that many of the old Nat politicians [and most industry leaders] got their high school and the opportunity of Uni education for FREE, yet willing to deprive their children and grandchildren of the same. Education, done well, is not a cost, but an investment.

    But, as another mentioned, we also need to address the jobs issues, otherwise we’ll end up with a lot of well educated people on the dole which is what happened to many here last time. For example, our youngest son did a year long $6000 graphic arts course ten years back which he has only recently just paid off. Only 3 of his class of 18 got jobs as opportunities were limited and still are. [Similarly journalism, another dying sector]. So, education needs to be relevant and in areas of business need.

    Some overseas Universities are building initiatives and small business opportunities. Much online development work is currently going offshore, not due to cost, but simply we just don’t have the tertiary and Uni-qualified students here in NZ. I think Universities themselves quietly want this to change, providing more online-related degrees as they do in say India, but just don’t know how or where to start. e.g. http://bit.ly/digitalmarketingbetterjobs

    There will be similar examples in other sectors too.

    • Incognito 9.1

      Fair comment but I will stick my neck out and make a bold statement:

      Education always is useful and relevant!

      It depends on the context and your perspective on the role education has or ought to have in society.

      • Colonial Viper 9.1.1

        Lots of lefties are still stuck in the culture of the 60s and 70s.

        Get a university education and voila – your meal ticket to a good secure public sector job.

        • Incognito 9.1.1.1

          1) Education is much broader than just university.

          2) Education is much more than just a meal ticket.

          Was you comment intended as sarcasm?

          • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.1.1

            That thinking is also stuck in the 60s and 70s.

            • McFlock 9.1.1.1.1.1

              So education just means university, and it’s value is solely as a meal ticket.

              Are you sure you haven’t stared so deeply into the neoliberal abyss that it hasn’t gazed back into you?

              • Chooky

                +100 McFlock…and it does help New Zealand students take their rightful places in New Zealand universities….as opposed to fee paying overseas students with rich parents taking young New Zealanders’ places in New Zealand universities…irony much!

                it is weird how some do not criticise and somehow tacitly think it is OK for overseas foreign fee paying students to take New Zealanders’ places in New Zealand universities

                ….a bit like some saying New Zealanders should not aspire to own their own homes

                …or the jonkey Nact government should sell off New Zealand State houses (paid for by generations of the New Zealand taxpayer) to overseas foreign investors

                …imo be very suspicious of these people ….they have other agendas and loyalties not in the interests of New Zealanders

            • Incognito 9.1.1.1.1.2

              No sarcasm then.

              History repeats itself in cycles but change is inevitable and constant. I doubt that I’m fixated on the 60s and 70s and that my thinking is stuck in that era but I am pretty poor at self-diagnosis of my mental state and habits so feel free to ‘free my mind’ from its chains but please be gentle – a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down.

              • Chooky

                +100 Incognito ….Education for the whole person is not rooted in 60s and 70s …Education has always in the West ( at least since Plato and Socrates ) been regarded as an intrinsic good in itself.

                This of course is not the case in totalitarian societies or the third world societies where universal suffrage and education of the whole person is regarded as a threat ( or a waste of money), ….and the mass of humanity is there to serve the utilitarian interests of the ruling oligarchy

                Lets not let young New Zealanders be made ignorant uneducated serfs in their own country to serve overseas masters…but instead given a free education to become the best that they can become

  10. sabine 10

    shorter rightwingers

    education is for wimps
    everyone else invest in boot straps.

    Pathetic really to be so scared of a well educated populace.

    And this new policy would apply perfectly to those that have to go to tertiary education to gain skills that 40 years ago came via an apprenticeship and a small wage.
    but I guess those private learning institutions and charter schools are the only ones allowed ‘free taxpayers funds’ before they get shut down because the children ain’t learning.

    But there you have it, the BUT WHAT ABOUT ME AND MY TAXCUT Crowd is not happy, never mind that while this policy may not apply to them it would apply to their children.

  11. Puckish Rogue 11

    I’m not sure Little and Labour have thought this one through properly, I think you’ll see an increase in young people leaving NZ to go overseas

    A type of bonding system put in place would have been more effective but I look forward to National taking the idea, improving on it and re-packaging it for NZ consumption

    • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1

      Oh noes, perhaps they’ll go to Germany. You fuckwits are all over the place. Wait for the focus groups to give you your lines.

      • Puckish Rogue 11.1.1

        We shouldn’t aim to be like European countries because they have so many advantages over us that we’ll never overcome

        Instead we should aim to develop our own culture

    • Paul 11.2

      OK so the puppets of the 1% don’t like this policy.
      Next?

      • Puckish Rogue 11.2.1

        So when Labour are soundly defeated (again) at the next election you’ll admit its a bad policy?

        • Colonial Viper 11.2.1.1

          Perhaps we can get that over with right now? It’s bad policy.

          It is $1.2B in government funding for something which is way down the priority list in terms of problems that Kiwis are facing today, and which they will be facing 10 years from now.

          • Doogs 11.2.1.1.1

            Not at all. You haven’t figured it have you? Education is far and away, head and shoulders bigger than any other issue facing us today. Through knowledge and understanding we improve everything! Trouble is it’s a long term fix. Takes at least a generation to show any real result. Are you OK to commit to that?

        • UncookedSelachimorpha 11.2.1.2

          I will admit that the Nats and their Crosby Textor mates have been effective in getting people not to vote, or to vote against their own interests….yet again. It would be no indication of the quality of the policy, more of the effectiveness of the spin and donor dollars.

        • Paul 11.2.1.3

          Are you really saying you have Labour’s interests at heart?

  12. Chooky 12

    Great Education Policy start by Andrew Little and Labour!…a sure vote winner for the youth vote and their families…and a sure vote for the future of New Zealand for New Zealanders

    …hopefully post grad studies can also be made more affordable for New Zealand’s best and brightest!

    ….I may yet vote Labour again for the first time since Roger’s rogering

  13. Whispering Kate 13

    Duncan Garner’s tweet is so correct – Labour has announced it too early and National will be developing its own strategies to tinker with this new bombshell policy which has vision. The present Government lacks any vision or creativity in policy making and always hangs around like an ignorant hanger-on hoping to pinch other people’s great ideas, because they haven’t the vision/intelligence to think for themselves They are desperate for power and will hang on any way they can and gleaning good ideas from other policy makers is a stink habit they have.

    Another thing. Why are people so mingy about paying tax?? Isn’t it what builds a nation, its roads, its hospitals, its police force/armed services, its schools and universities. I have never understood why this evasion/avoidance bad habit persists in people. Everybody has to use the roads, hospitals – even private insurance won’t provide for the really vital health care we need, just ask anybody who has experienced loved ones in critical care fighting for their life, no private institution is going to pay for that. Wouldn’t they bleat if it became like the US and the hospitals just showed you the door if you couldn’t pay to access that kind of intensive/critical care. To me personally it is beneath contempt that people who evade/avoid paying their share of tax pay accountants huge money just to avoid paying it – crazy. The only reason I can see for having a trust is because you have a dependent who will need financial protection after you have popped your clogs (a good reason for a Trust) and you no longer have any faith in this heartless Government to protect dependents so that they can live with financial security for the rest of their lives.

    • sabine 13.1

      I think that by coming out now Labour has actually taken the wind out of National. Yes, National can ‘borrow’ the idea and come up with something similar etc etc etc, and Labour can say , well done National borrowing our idea? National, implementing Labours Ideas since ages ago. How is that socialism coming along 🙂

      As for those that belong to the What about Me and my Taxcuts Crowd, don’t you know that no government ever has done anything for them, or at least if the government did something it was not enough, or not pure enough or or or. This apply regardless of voting pattern or party affiliation.

      – but what about me and my student loan i got 20/10/5 years ago.
      – but how will they fund it, and will the poor profit form it
      – and I am paying so much tax and get nothing from it
      – oh worries, National will steal it and rah rah rha rha

      Never mind that the policy may apply to them in the future or to their kids
      Never mind that we can afford 26 million on a flagdebacle, many many more millions to fund and stock sheep farms as a Gift to the royal Saudi House and as a topping pay for the abattoir aswell, that we have charter shools that are a money sponge suck suck suck, and so many more that it needs a post by blib to list all the wasteful spending our spendthrift National Government has come to be known for.

      but yeah, nothing for them innit, so it must be bad, and must be shot down, or it must be co-opted by National to be made to work. 🙂

      It was however Labours policy – time stamped and all, and they can let National know at any given time. Just you know, for fun 🙂

      • McFlock 13.1.1

        I think that by coming out now Labour has actually taken the wind out of National.

        cue a dead cat from Key – maybe he’ll say something outrageous at the tpp signing…

      • Colonial Viper 13.1.2

        I think that by coming out now Labour has actually taken the wind out of National.

        I pick the polls returning to the status quo after the one to two months (max).

        • sabine 13.1.2.1

          who de fuck cares?

          the point is that no matter what National does, Labour has come out first with a sensible Policy, and labour can point out politely to National that National is indeed the party that implements the policies of other parties as national is devoid of any ideas or policies that do not directly benefit them.

          when are you going to join National? you would fit in nicely.

        • alwyn 13.1.2.2

          Personally I don’t think there will be any movement in the polls at all.
          Look at 2014. Labour kept announcing things and the polls just maintained their steady decline in the Labour preference.
          Governments lose elections. Opposition parties don’t win them.
          If an Opposition appears competent they can then win. If they don’t appear competent they probably won’t. However the desire to have a change must come first.

    • b waghorn 13.2

      “Duncan Garner’s tweet is so correct – Labour has announced it too early ”
      Their damned if the do damned if they don’t.
      All we’ve heard for a year is where’s labours policy!!
      It is also possible this is just the first string to the policy bow that kill those black hearted barstards hopes for a 4 th term.

  14. Neil 14

    If you stuck a plunger on Steven Joyce’s head, he would pass for being a teletubbie.

  15. lefty 15

    My understanding is It would take three consecutive Labour governments before anyone got free tertiary education for long enough to complete a three year degree under the policy Andrew Little has just announced.

    The chances of that happening are pretty remote.

    Even then only some people would qualify. School leavers would definitely benefit, so good for the grandchildren but only of limited use for anyone whose children are already at school.

    As for workers, well they better not pin their retraining hopes on this unless they are totally unqualified. If they left school at sixteen and went straight into the workforce then this policy will provide them with the opportunity to upskill.

    The problem for many workers it re-skilling that is required.

    Like the qualified carpenter who has to get a social work degree because their body has packed up, the bank worker with a degree who has had their job outsourced or automated, the trades person whose trade is no longer in demand or the machinist whose factory has closed.

    My understanding of this policy is that these people would not benefit because they have already had tertiary training/education.

    Nevertheless we should give Labour credit for raising an important issue. Its just a pity they have come up with such a half arsed solution.

  16. Paul Campbell 16

    I’m of the age that I got a free tertiary education, I’ve paid a whole lot more taxes over my lifetime as a result, I don’t begrudge that, I’ve come off a lot better and the government has had its investment in me repaid with interest.

    I’ve also just put my kids through Uni, they’ve come out without student loans, we started saving when they were 9.

    However I still believe in free education, I think it’s a long term investment in our people, our country – National’s policies have alienated the kiwi diaspora, there will be a whole lot more of our kids not coming home, because they are scared of their own nation – that will be sad – lots of people my age may never see their grandkids.

    • Paul Campbell 16.1

      And I should add – I’ve benefitted from National’s tax cuts I’d be quite happy for my high marginal tax rate to go back to where it was (still low by world rates) to pay for the next generation’s education

      • Lanthanide 16.1.1

        I, on the other hand, think that the government paying 3/4 of the cost of tertiary education, and providing interest-free student loans, is a pretty damn good deal for what ends up being a significant private benefit.

        I think individuals should pay for some of the private benefit they receive from their education. That, to me, is fair.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1.1.1

          Are you sure you’ve got a clear picture of the positive externalities education provides to the wider community?

          Effectively, you’re arguing for “user pays”. Who needs the failed policies of ACT?

          • Lanthanide 16.1.1.1.1

            “Are you sure you’ve got a clear picture of the positive externalities education provides to the wider community?”

            Yes, and that’s why the government pays 3/4 of the cost and has the very generous interest-free student loan scheme.

            “Effectively, you’re arguing for “user pays”. Who needs the failed policies of ACT?”

            I’m arguing for the user, who receives a substantial private benefit for that education, to pay for a very small proportion of the cost of that private benefit.

            “User pays” when we build flash houses that provide substantial private benefit to the owner. I don’t see why the user shouldn’t have to pay a small part of their education.

            • Sacha 16.1.1.1.1.1

              How do we establish what proportion is private benefit?

              • Lanthanide

                Easy, if you get a job where you earn $70,000 a year because you’ve been educated, whereas before the best job you could expect is one earning $35,000 a year, then your private benefit is $35,000 a year.

                On a simple working life of 40 years, that education has given you a private benefit of $1,400,000.

                Seems pretty fair that you might chip in $15-20k back to the government (who already paid another $45-60k on what you paid) out of that pool.

                • Sacha

                  Simplest method seems to be using progressive personal tax for a higher public return when your education *actually* improves your personal earning power, like NZ used to do. Rather than making assumptions.

                  Or maybe we need to tax accumulated wealth rather than just income? Or financial transfers, land purchases, etc ..

                • Sacha

                  When we are predicting future personal and social benefits, where do those core assumptions come from?

            • McFlock 16.1.1.1.1.2

              Very fair proposal, lanth.

              How about, if there is a private monetary benefit, the student repay society the monetary cost of that private benefit? I.e. taxes in higher income brackets.

              That way, if there’s no monetary private benefit, then there’s no private cost.

              That’s of course if we assume that there should be no net private monetary benefit for education. It reduces the incentive to study in the first place, but what the hoo.

        • Colonial Viper 16.1.1.2

          Lanth not all university grads end up in six figure jobs.

          • Paul Campbell 16.1.1.2.1

            I agree, I have no problem with me paying more because I ended up with a greater benefit, we need excellent well trained teachers, plumbers, and electricians as much as we need embedded hardware designers and programmers

            • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1.1.2.1.1

              “…paying more…”

              Do you mean through progressive taxation? I hope so, because adding costs to education just deters participation.

              According to classic economic theory, anyway.

              • Paul Campbell

                yes I mean exactly that – as I mentioned above I benefit from Key’s tax cuts for the rich, I’d rather I was paying those taxes and the money was going somewhere more useful – the whole trading a reduction in the top tax margin for an increase in GST was such a scam.

                If society isn’t working well enough to train all the people we actually need to run it something’s wrong, the people running things seem to have no clues and are blinkered, only seeing the betterment of their mate’s financial positions as their goal in parliament. It’s time we something that trains and pays all the people we need to run our country – and yes including teachers, trades people (who’d better stop doing under-the table deals to avoid tax after we train them), artists, economists, and yes IT people like me.

    • Chooky 16.2

      +100 Paul Campbell

  17. Puckish Rogue 17

    An announcement I’d like to see from any political party would be something along the lines of a major overhaul of the apprentice scheme

    This whole focus on tertiary (read: uni) is doing a great deal of our kids a disservice, not everyone wants to go to uni and not every kid can handle uni

    But bringing the apprentice schemes back into focus with as much focus as uni gets would good a lot further in improving NZ for everyone then uni would

    • Lanthanide 17.1

      +1

      My boyfriend suggested this policy could specifically exclude university education, as a way to encourage more people into trades (and reduce cost on the government).

      • Puckish Rogue 17.1.1

        I wouldn’t like it to exclude anyone from uni study just give equal advertising to apprenticeships and polytechs

        Maybe some politician can take up the cause and fight for this because education shouldn’t just equal university degree

    • Jenny Kirk 17.2

      It is really interesting how Puckish Rogue and the other rightwing trolls on this blog cannot read and listen to what has actually been said by Andrew Little and other Labour MPs re educational matters. This is obviously deliberate. Or maybe its because they are unable to.

      Yesterday’s announcement was preceded about a week or so ago with one about apprenticeships – for PR’s benefit – and no, I’m not going to link to it : have a look around the web for it yourself. Don’t be lazy.

      And much earlier in the piece – some time in 2013 (might have been November) – Labour announced its final Policy Platform from which future policy was to be made.
      There’s a piece in there somewhere which reads very much like extracts from Andrew Little’s speech yesterday. Here’s the link to the Policy Platform. I bet none of you RWNJs even bother to skip thru it.

      https://www.labourparty.org.nz/sites/default/files/New%20Zealand%20%20Labour%20Party%20Policy%20Platform.pdf

      • Puckish Rogue 17.2.1

        Andrew Little is very boring to listen so I prefer to come here because at least here I don’t fall asleep

        As I stated above its not that its open to apprentices and polytechs its how much air time will they get as an option for young people or, when its brought up, will it all be about university positions or about how companies want university graduates or the “knowledge economy being based on university graduates

        What I’m saying is I hope someone in Labour champions apprentices and trades training and fights to get as much air time as they can for it

    • Heather Grimwood 17.3

      to PR at 17…….you know perfectly well that the polytech option to this tertiary policy will be majorly used by apprentices…I know several young folk whose lives have taken off with a bang on Labour’s previous apprenticeship scheme albeit having to pay considerable amount for it. Importantly, they chose the apprenticeship way though well qualified to take a degree, because they didn’t want the burden of a student loan.

      • Puckish Rogue 17.3.1

        I’m not saying they not, I’m saying the main focus, what will be pushed more is university.

        I think apprenticeships and polytechs are a very good way for some people to go but there seemed to be (from the mid 80s onwards anyway) a real move away from trades to a viewpoint pushed by the media and (both) political parties that the only option for kids was university, that if you didn’t have a degree you’d amount to nothing

        I hope I’m wrong, I really do because theres nothing sadder then seeing a kid pushed into uni then amassing a whopping great debt with nothing to show for it

  18. Whispering Kate 18

    Why did the apprentice scheme get axed and why? Kids used to be trained on the job, did their units every year and did the pre-requisite hours hours to become qualified. Nothing matches being employed while you learn the trade and learning from other senior workers while you work alongside them, It seems companies these days do not pay for anything except grudgingly to pay their staff wages. Some now have contract staff who have to look after their own GST and tax at the end of each financial term so that the companies do not even have to be responsible for that either. I believe in Australia if a company has over so many staff they have to employ an apprentice – why not, its a good idea – it should be reinstated here.

    Even degrees now have to be “engineered”, so that a person has to graduate being reasonably skilled so they can be up and running as soon as the employer takes them on. Why isn’t the employer reponsible for training them – there are so many degree courses now just because the employer no longer wishes applicants to have a general degree because it means they have to do some work actually teaching them the ropes. Its a fallacy, I know a person with an MA in Art History and she is now a Vice President in a US bank – that person didn’t do a commerce or finance degree – its just stupid how it is geared these days.

    Employers only pay 28% tax -it seems they have a pretty good time of it, with their tax avoidance schemes as well. The poor sod on PAYE is on a hiding to hell and is loosing all the way to the bank on it.

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      Young people used to be trained on the job in real practical skills by the railways and the post office, by government departments building the nation up. And at the same time these young people would get an income, a place in society, and the ability to buy their first home and start a family.

    • sabine 18.2

      I entered in my apprenticeship in Germany in the 1980’s.
      My choices would have been cook, baker, seamstress or Milliner. I was into making stuff big time.

      The seamstresses and Milliners did not provide apprenticeships any more ( i went to he head of the guild in my home town to find a business that would still train youngsters) as they could not compete with cheap imports form china and other places and essentially all but a very few closed down.
      So essentially a lot of places that used to provide job training were lost that way, inclusive toy maker, candle maker, tailors, weavers, tanners, tool makers etc etc etc.

      Baker – i was told that girls marry bakers and run the shop. This at last has changed and in Europe and elsewhere there are now many female bakers and pastry chefs, however artisan businesses that still produce the good old way are going the way of the dodo, as they can not compete with the crab stuff supermarkets sell and for the price supermarkets produce their ‘just ad water’ breads.

      Cook – i was too young to be allowed to work till 10 pm so i could not find a place to train. Now a days, the restriction have changed somewhat, but due to a lot of cafe’s and fast food places that are more patronised than your standard restaurant, less and less people train, and thus there is now a shortage of qualified cooks pretty much anywhere in Europe.

      eventually i trained in retail, getting a degree after three years in small business accounting/trading. This covered not only the sales aspect, but also stock holding/maintenance, ordering/cancelling, quality assurance, accounting, advertising/merchandising etc.

      However even these apprenticeships are falling away as we are having less and less small businesses, but more and more large chain stores that do neither their own ordering of stock, nor do they do their own accounting/paye and merchandising etc etc and thus can’t apply to be a business that can train apprentices.

      And last but least, it was in the eighties that the Mantra of “Training is too expensive for businesses, and trainees don’t bring any value” started, and that the government should pay for the training that businesses could and would not provide anymore, and government outsourced it to the private market, and that is where we are now, and people now learn how to cut hair in an Academy, and they go to culinary school to learn how to fry an egg sunny side up.

      btw. Germany in 1983 – 1999 was run by the conservative government of the day that loved themselves some free trade n shit. All to give us cheaper prices. It was the kids of that generation that paid the price. Ever since then we have had relatively high youth unemployment, as there literally are not places for them to go.

      I guess, it went much the same in NZ, and too boot, NZ does not have a training programme in place for those that would train the future apprentices, in Germany at least the way to go ahead is simple, Apprentice, Journey Man for 6 – 9 years, and then study to become a Master. Once that certification is achieved one is legally entitled to train apprentices – and a lack of trainers means a lack of places offering a place to apprentice to.. In NZ they have nothing like this available. At least not that I know.

      In saying that, a lot of builders or mechanics, tool makers etc etc etc, often have an apprenticeship first and then go to University or other higher learning institutions to study and to increase their earning potential. I know it is so last century to go to a University, but hey, what do I know, Germany is an exporter of knowledge instead of Milkpowder and Sheep Processing Plants to Saudi Arabia.

  19. Raf 19

    Has anyone mentioned that “education” is being turned on its head, considerably cheapened, AND vastly improved, by online learning. “Disruption” is the word I believe. This is changing everything for the better.

    • McFlock 19.1

      Well, yes and no – until we get machines that pass the turing test, anyway. Most areas of study need practical training under supervision and/or educators to explain issues as they come up in the students’ minds.

      Not to mention assessment to make sure the student gets it.

      Emails are ok, but miss a lot. Skype is still not ideal.

      • Raf 19.1.1

        Sounds like you’ve never done an online course. All this is covered in the best of them, including assessments and recognised qualifications. Offered by the likes of MIT, Harvard, Yale etc as well as Coursera, edx & co. Can work hand in hand with institutions too, saving much $$ and time. Most online lecturers 10x better than any ‘real’ ones I ever had. Jeffrey Sachs for Sustainable Development, for instance.

        • McFlock 19.1.1.1

          Last I looked at the MIT and Harvard stuff, it’s the notes plus maybe videos/podcasts of the lectures.

          The important bit of teaching and learning is feedback.

          And then, of course, I’d not like to see even a junior a structural engineer or pilot whose sole training consisted of a web degree.

          • Raf 19.1.1.1.1

            It’s much more than just notes and videos of lectures – ALL of these courses allow for feedback of some kind, often extremely interesting feedback too, and there are thousands of students from all over the world – and many of the qualifications count as credits towards a “proper” degree.

            BUT my point is, this trend should be incorporated into our current face to face teaching practice – saving, as I say, much time and money, and allowing much greater access. Yes, even for pilots and engineers. Even medical schools have discovered that much of their material can be taught via videos, available to students as often and whenever they like, and making the final hands on teaching far more efficient. And freeing up lecturers’ time for more important things.

            It’s also a great way for students to try out a huge range of subjects (and teachers) to check what interests them without the cost of enrolling and spending months at something, only to finally realise they’d made a mistake.

  20. Puckish Rogue 20

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11582978

    I’m conflicted, on one hand shes right but on the other hand its Rachel Smalley….

    • One Anonymous Bloke 20.1

      No, she’s wrong…

      The policy would go hand-in-hand with a review of the tertiary sector, including a tightening on which courses were government-funded and a round-up of rogue tertiary providers, Mr Little said.

      “I’m not sure homeopathy for pets is the sort of thing when we’re thinking about the future of work and re-training, not sure it’s the kind of course we would fund,” he said.

      • millsy 20.1.1

        I hope this review includes:

        Stopping polytechnics from conferring degrees.
        Reestablishing the distinctions between universities, PTE’s, colleges of education, and technical institutes, instead of allowing them to blur together into one mess.
        Restoring funding for ACE
        Abolishing Unit Standards
        Re-establishing cadetships
        Return to industry training for trades, with block courses at night instead of ‘pre-trade’ courses.

  21. Rosemary McDonald 21

    Bryce Edwards sets a world record for how many times the word “radical” can be used in one opinion piece….

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11583002

    “Political roundup: Labour’s return to radicalism”

    • pat 21.1

      you realise you’re getting old when all these commentators spout “radical” about a system that was essentially what we had for decades before the neolib takeover (shakes head)

      • Chooky 21.1.1

        To be really “radical”….Labour needs to wipe off the books existing student debt ( relief for all those young bright New Zealand debtors overseas in exile, who mortgaged their youth on tertiary education)

        ….afterall it was Labour that created this debtor scheme for higher education in the first place, which is a betrayal of New Zealand youth

        http://craccum.ausa.auckland.ac.nz/features/a-brief-history-of-student-debt

        http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2016/02/01/labours-three-free-years-of-tertiary-education-a-critical-appraisal/

        Thanks to jonkey nact we now have a tertiary system that favours the wealthy ( often mediocre students with wealthy parents)…and overseas paying students over our own best and brightest. Tertiary education is a sorry neoliberal saga of betrayal of New Zealand youth

        ….and the betrayal of New Zealand youth is continuing with the sale of New Zealand housing to overseas investors

        It is a question of Labour’s priorities . Labour must do much MORE to address these problems for New Zealand youth … and much FASTER …before it gets my vote

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