22 Aug 2009

Private school accused of selling tertiary qualification

7:54 am on 22 August 2009

Police have been asked to investigate claims that a private school was willing to sell a government-approved tertiary qualification for $12,000.

The school, which cannot be named, is accredited by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority.

Newspaper journalist Tony Wall, who went undercover for TVNZ programme Illegal New Zealand was able, with the help of a Mandarin-speaking colleague, to buy a tertiary-level business qualification for $12,000. He did not have to complete any exams.

NZQA chief executive Karen Poutasi says an investigation into the school began as soon as the allegations aired on the programme on Thursday night.

Dr Poutasi says the school has been spoken to on Friday and police have been notified regarding the allegations.

She says she was disturbed to see the transaction carried out on the programme.

Dr Poutasi says if the allegations are correct the school would lose NZQA accreditation which would mean it was no longer entitled to government funding.