Southland fights polytechnic proposal with petition

Education Minister Chris Hipkins says the latest numbers for the Government's flagship fees-free...
Education Minister Chris Hipkins. Photo: NZ Herald
A petition against the proposed merger of all of New Zealand's polytechnics and institutes of technology into one national tertiary organisation has already garnered more than 3000 signatures.

Invercargill City Councillor Alex Crackett launched online the petition "Save Southland's SIT" earlier this week.

She asked students from the Spouthern Institute of Technology (SIT) and residents to sign the petition to draw attention to the situation and plans to deliver the petition to Education Minister Chris Hipkins.

"SIT has been instrumental in the vitality of our community and economy."

Mr Hipkins announced last week Government planned to merge New Zealand's 16 polytechnics and institutions off technology into one entity, provisionally called the New Zealand Institute of Skills & Technology.

Under the proposal, the new body would manage capital and operational budgets, staffing, and learning management systems for all the institutions.

The proposal has not been well received in the South, with Otago Polytechnic also opposing the proposal.

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