Tertiary education provision in Southland Murihiku recommendations

Advice provided by the Southland Murihiku Regional Skills Leadership Group (RSLG) to the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) in April 2023 to inform supplementary guidance and investment for 2024.

This advice draws on relevant labour market statistics and projections, paired with knowledge and advice from:

  • employers
  • iwi
  • unions
  • local and central government
  • Workforce Development Councils
  • other labour market influencers.

While the primary purpose is to inform the TEC on the Southland Murihiku RSLG’s recommended investment in the region, the RSLG welcomes training providers, industry and kaimahi (employees) to use this information to make informed decisions around training pathways and skills attainment.

Skills shortages and development

Address specific skills shortages across the region, particularly in spotlighted and emerging/supporting sectors (see workforce demand profile).

Resource effective provision of national certificate of educational achievement (NCEA) pre-entry requirements including:

  • basic literacy and numeracy (and as support for drivers licensing)
  • English as a second language (ESOL).

Equity of access

Ensure no one is left behind – consider wider barriers to access that may inhibit or exclude learners from obtaining prerequisites for qualifications and reduce where possible, for example:

  • requiring birth certificates as form of identification

Consider regional accessibility to enable equity of access, both in terms of demographics and location (particularly in sub-regions and remote/rural locations). This includes the expansion of existing Hi-flex delivery options, to enable synchronous and asynchronous learning.

Acknowledge and support learning differences through flexible delivery of foundation skills, focused on the needs of the learner.

Supporting regional strengths and delivery of programmes and initiatives

Support local programme planning taking place with stakeholders and partners for example, the Kia Tū Pathway-Planning micro-credential; a joint initiative between Murihiku Regeneration and SIT which aims to:

  • contribute to a reduction in youth at risk of limited employment and tertiary education
  • promote equity in achievement
  • develop career pathways for learners.

Key to the programme’s success is a supportive, flexible pathway plan founded in both rangatahi and whānau aspirations, and a shared understanding with whānau and other relevant parties. 

Qualification and vocational provision

Enable provision and accessibility of relevant aquaculture and energy qualifications for Southland-based students, either via supported attendance at institutions outside the region, or through Southland-based provision.

Ensure learning remains holistic, even if delivered through a series of smaller qualifications.

Support delivery of accessible, fit-for-purpose micro-credentials for entrepreneurial/business development practices as a lead into business support/incubator initiatives, and to support existing business owners wanting to expand their knowledge and skills. 

Support provision of a Level 2 qualification in Aged Care support and ESOL, to enable basic skills provision and enhance labour market capability. Regional need has been identified through consultation with local providers, E tū and Welcoming Communities, with provision now under investigation by a local provider.

Enable Southland delivery of the new Computerised Numerical Control (CNC) qualification under development through Hanga-Aro-Rau.

Enable Southland delivery of the Trade Assistant qualification under development with Hanga-Aro-Rau and Waihanga Ara Rau.

Work-based learning (WBL)

Embed experiential learning within the curriculum as a scaffolded educational opportunity, including through:

  • non-Gateway delivery models reflecting community/regional needs
  • specialisms
  • networks.

This has potential to address emerging teaching shortages in specialist skills areas (for example, food and fibre, construction and manufacturing/engineering), and support research findings by organisations such as the Vodafone Foundation, that young people need experiences that educate, energise and inspire them.

Investigate the ability to fund placement management tools to enable consistent, efficient and effective delivery of work-based learning for:

  • students
  • tertiary providers
  • host organisations.

This will help support the logistical management of placements generally, but especially where there is a need to increase numbers within specific disciplines (for example, nursing). It would also help minimise the administrative burden for host organisations, particularly where labour market shortages are already disrupting operations and/or where trainee staff are urgently required. Potential to be considered within strategic funding investment, with opportunity for national development/roll-out.

Strengthen support mechanisms for WBL delivery by equipping businesses/employers to enable/manage workplace learning requirements i.e., access to relevant qualifications.

Last updated: 08 June 2023