New Zealand public education will be seriously undermined once our government signs the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).
NZEI Te Riu Roa National Secretary Paul Goulter says the deal puts at risk the rights of sovereign nations to enact laws and regulations that stop foreign edu-businesses from setting up in New Zealand, maximising their profits and dominating New Zealand education.
“This is a major threat to our fee-free, high quality public education system.
“The TPPA wording is ambiguous but analysis of the documents clearly shows the agreement would allow international corporates to move into the education sector in New Zealand. In no country has that ever worked.
“Unlike Singapore, which carved out a clear exemption, it appears that New Zealand’s negotiators have put at risk the rights of future governments to protect public education against any changes that would disadvantage global edu-businesses.
“Sitting beside the government’s plans for private education to be included in the TiSA (Trade in Services Agreement), there is now a clear threat to our quality public education system.
“Let’s be clear, the TPPA is an international trade agreement aimed at ensuring that global corporates can trade and make profits – it is not about providing free good quality public education for children and future generations.
“We have asked the government, even at this late stage, to reconsider signing the deal in its current form.”