Govt invests $21 million in Education Council
Education Minister Hekia Parata today announced the investment of $21.34 million in the Education Council of Aotearoa New Zealand.
“The Education Council has a vital role to play in raising the status of teaching, leading the teaching profession and setting and maintaining high professional standards. In order for it to do this important work its financial position must be sustainable and it currently isn’t,” Ms Parata says.
“This funding gives the Education Council a specific timeframe to establish the full cost of delivering all its functions as a professional body for teachers and to work out how it will become financially independent from the Government.”
“The first year of the Education Council has shown how seriously it is working to strengthen the professional identity and status of teachers and the funding announced today will help with the transition to teachers taking more ownership of their professional body,” Ms Parata says.
“The Education Council has a broader remit than its predecessor, the New Zealand Teachers’ Council, and it inherited an unsustainable financial position. But this one-off investment shows just how much I value its voice, leadership and work in the education sector.”
The funding comes with a number of accountabilities. By July 2017 the Education Council will need to show the Government how it plans to increase its revenue and become financially self-sufficient by July 2019. It will need to develop a detailed business plan, investigate further revenue sources and consult with teachers on fees that have not increased from $220 for a three-year practicing certificate (equivalent to $73 per annum) since 2010.
The Education Council will be required to provide quarterly updates to the Minister on its financial position and progress, while the Ministry of Education will commission an independent review of the Council’s financial progress in a year’s time. The Minister will appoint a person with corporate finance expertise to the Education Council to help support its pathway to financial sustainability.
“This is a significant investment by taxpayers which is in addition to the $3.43 million already invested to help the council establish its new functions and role,” Ms Parata says.
“The Education Council is very mindful of the need to demonstrate value to the New Zealand teaching profession and I am confident that it will honour the obligations that this investment incurs.”
Ms Parata thanked the Education Council for the substantial amount of progress it has made in its first year of operation.