9 Jun 2020

National vows to scrap teacher registration fees if elected

12:06 pm on 9 June 2020

The National Party says it will fully fund the Teaching Council and get rid off registration fees, if elected.

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Photo: RNZ / Richard Tindiller

From February 2021, fees for teachers are set to jump from $220 every three years to $157 a year, or $470 over three years.

The rise in fees, announced on Budget Day, has prompted secondary teachers to vote no confidence in the Teaching Council.

National's Education spokesperson Nikki Kaye said the cost hike is unacceptable and the registration fee would be scrapped all together under a National government.

If elected, the party would fully fund the Teaching Council, at a cost of about $16 million a year.

The policy would require a law change to ensure the council doesn't have the power to charge teachers registration fees or other costs relating to its functions.

"New Zealand has had long-standing teacher supply and retention issues. This is a small way that we can reduce costs for teachers and is one of a number of policies National intends to implement to reinforce the value of educators in our society," Kaye said.

Despite being fully funded, the Teaching Council would remain independent, she added.

"New Zealand is facing a significant economic recovery and our education system and teachers will continue to play a crucial role in helping our country get through this. It's important we reduce costs particularly when we are heading into a recession."

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