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Despite the spin our universities slide

 A dramatic slip in rankings for three New Zealand universities in The Times Higher Education report released today is a legacy of the Government’s underfunding of tertiary education, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson David Cunliffe says. 

“Three of our oldest universities have gone backwards in these rankings, with Victoria University dropping by at least 50 places and the University of Canterbury and University of Waikato both dropping more than a hundred places.

“Universities NZ Executive Director Chris Whelan still called out the government today, saying that ‘this decline won’t be arrested without further government investment’. 

“Steven Joyce claimed he was spending a further $113 million for tertiary education in Budget 2015. He spent just $7 million that turned out to be little more than a vanishing act based on reallocations and savings and in real terms a cut. 

“With a Minister at the helm who clearly has no regard for quality research, it’s no wonder that a doctrine of mergers and cuts has become the new normal for the tertiary education sector.

"It’s unacceptable that the government sits on its hands as our public institutions slowly decline. Trumpeting inflated international student figures is no solution, “ David Cunliffe says.