The Minister of Education is consulting on tertiary fee regulation settings for 2022

The Minister of Education invites submissions on fee regulation settings for tertiary education providers in 2022. This includes a proposed Annual Maximum Fee Movement of 1.7 percent, in line with forecast inflation for 2022.

The Annual Maximum Fee Movement

The Government regulates how much tertiary providers can increase their fees for domestic students each year through the Annual Maximum Fee Movement (AMFM). This caps the percentage increase on fees for existing courses at level 3 or above on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework.

The Minister of Education has proposed an AMFM rate of 1.7 percent for the 2022 calendar year, in line with forecast inflation for 2022 as published in the 2021 Budget Economic and Fiscal Update. This would permit a 1.7 percent increase on the fees (GST exclusive) charged in 2021 to domestic students.

This will help to maintain the affordability of tertiary education for students and their whānau at a time when we expect more people to undertake tertiary study or training due to the economic impacts of COVID-19. This also gives tertiary providers some flexibility to help cover increases to costs in 2022.

The Gazette notice also references other existing fee regulation settings, including fee setting limits for new courses and the micro-credentials fee cap (the latter was confirmed by the Minister in 2020 and introduced from the start of 2021).

Clarifying what additional fees providers cannot charge

In early 2021, the Ministry engaged with tertiary education institutions (TEIs) to get more information on additional compulsory fees that providers charge to students on top of tuition fees and compulsory course costs. This indicated that there are a small number of providers charging additional administrative charges for enrolment, exam fees and fees associated with the award of NZQA credits.

The Minister is also consulting on changes to the wording in the Gazette notice to clarify what costs are expected to be included within fee regulation settings. This proposal will make it clear that providers cannot charge administrative fees for enrolment, exams, and the award of NZQA credits. These costs must be included within the compulsory course cost component of their fees which are regulated.

This proposal means that providers will still be able to charge other incidental administrative fees for additional services that are payable because of the specific circumstances of a student, such as application fees for selected entry programmes, exam resits, or exam relocations. This is clarified through a short list in the Gazette notice, identifying examples of some of the exclusions.

Consultation process

The proposed conditions have been published in the New Zealand Gazette and submissions close 6 August 2021.

The Tertiary Education (2022 Fee Regulation Settings) Notice 2021(external link)

Following consultation, the Minister will then make a final decision on the fee regulation settings for 2022, including the AMFM rate.

Submissions can be sent by email: tertiary.strategy@education.govt.nz

Or by post:

Fee Regulation Settings Submission

Tertiary Education Policy

Ministry of Education

PO Box 1666

Wellington 6140         

 

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