There is an excellent article by Norman LaRocque in the NZ Herald.
He notes Te Mana Akonga has argued that the student loan scheme is having devastating effects by acting as a barrier to tertiary education participation and “fencing Maori out of better-paying jobs”.
Norman then points out the gap between rhetoric and reality, specifically:
* Maori students enrolled in formal tertiary education almost doubled between 1997 and 2003.
* The number of Maori completing qualifications in tertiary education almost doubled between 1997 and 2001.
* The number of Maori industry trainees grew by 60 per cent between December 2000 and June this year.
* The number of Maori students enrolled in private training establishments rose by 60 per cent between 1999 and 2003.
* Research has shown that the income returns to educational investments for Maori exceed those of non-Maori at all levels of education.
* The Maori unemployment rate, though still high relative to non-Maori, has dropped from more than 25 per cent in 1992 to 8.3 per cent.
* number of Maori in highly skilled employment grew by nearly 120 per cent between 1992 and 2003 – more than three times the growth in highly skilled non-Maori employment.
A very good demolition job which deals with the hysteria of Te Mana Akonga. Incvidentially I noted back in April that the percentage of Maori in tertiary education not only now matched non-Maori, but was almost twice the rate.