International education is a national goal for New Zealand.

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Intelligent Overseas Education Travel Update: International education is a national goal for New Zealand. New Zealand policymakers hope to use Covid-19’s disruption to the foreign education market to organize a complete reset. The epidemic has put the country into Alert Level 4 until August 20, with lockdown limitations in Auckland until August 31. Since the outbreak, New Zealand has closed its borders to contain the virus. To consult on its draught policy statement: High-Value International Education. “Excellent education and Konga/student experience” is defined as “targeting and attracting Konga/students in high-value markets” by the country’s education administration.

It also promotes global citizenship and supports New Zealand Konga/students studying overseas. “A reformed sector will be more resilient and diversified than our pre-Covid sector,” the proposed policy states. New Zealand’s system-wide value will be the new sector. Brett Berquist, Director Foreign at the University of Auckland, told that his institution “appreciates the open and transparent government consultation process” to reconsider international education. “While we respect the government’s desire to reduce risks (especially sovereign risks) linked with overseas schooling, we believe they’ve inflated those dangers,” he added. It seems that the impact on the labor market is influencing definitions of value.

These include an over-reliance on international education revenue, a weakened immigration system, providers marketing access to the labor market rather than education experience, and global education revenue-driving inequities in domestic educational systems. It also implies that teacher supply, academic capacity, housing, infrastructure, and labor market consequences may be impacted.

According to Berquist, research showed that contrary to popular opinion, most international graduates land low-skilled positions and many degree programs are not performing their stated purpose. Every degree-qualified overseas student who is underemployed has roughly ten other degree-qualified international students who are employed at ANZSCO skill level 1, indicating they are degree-level skilled. The New Zealand International Education Strategy 2018-2030 suggests shifting from international education as a revenue-generating export business to focusing on quality education and higher value markets. The strategy outlines a vision for a prosperous and globally connected New Zealand.

It is proposed that increased revenue from international student fees and spending, longer-term benefits from research and innovation partnerships; gifts to the domestic education system through relationships and funding; and strengthening ties with other countries benefits New Zealand.

For New Zealand authorities, success means a more resilient and diverse higher education industry. It will also attract talented students, boost New Zealand’s expertise and capability in important sectors, and strengthen its economy, society, and international diplomacy. According to Universities New Zealand CEO Chris Whelan, the New Zealand government is doing well to identify the forms of overseas education that will benefit both students and the country. 

It is a good start. Universities are already dedicated to delivering high-value foreign education and its associated advantages to New Zealand. But the statement needs further development. Currently, it only considers overseas students and New Zealand. Not from the standpoint of providers – what sorts of international education are they ready to sponsor and why? For anyone interested in participating in online workshops, the government has set a deadline of September 3. The social license for international education in New Zealand appears to be all-inclusive.

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