High-quality education delivery, student experience and global citizenship are among the pillars of a new government strategy for New Zealand’s international education sector announced today by Education Minister Chris Hipkins.

Mr Hipkins officially launched the New Zealand International Education Strategy 2018-2030 to 600 attendees at the 2018 New Zealand international education conference in Wellington today.

The Strategy was developed with significant input from a wide range of interested parties including through recent consultation.
 

“The Strategy looks towards a thriving and globally connected New Zealand through highly regarded international education, and supports other government priorities across education, immigration and economic growth,” Chris Hipkins said.

The public release of the Strategy comes two days after Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway announced changes to post-study work rights for international students. The changes are designed to support high-quality education while preserving a pathway to residency for those with the skills and qualifications New Zealand needs.

“The Government sees a strong future for international education,” Chris Hipkins said.

“This Strategy will provide a clear framework that will enable the full potential of the international education sector to be realised.”
The Strategy provides three goals for international education.
 
“Goal one is to deliver an excellent education and student experience by ensuring international students feel welcome and safe here and receive a high-quality education.
“Goal two supports the sector’s sustainable growth by supporting the diversification of products, services and markets, and ensuring all regions in New Zealand share in the benefits.
 “Goal three is to develop global citizens who have the knowledge and skills to live, work and learn globally. This goal targets New Zealanders as well as international students as I want to ensure that talented Kiwis have opportunities to make global connections too and understand and embrace the benefits of international education at home and abroad.
 “In line with this Government’s commitment to measuring success and wellbeing more broadly, the Strategy provides a stronger focus on social and cultural outcomes for New Zealand, alongside the economic benefits.”
 Chris Hipkins said the Strategy marks a clear shift in emphasis from the 2011 Leadership Statement, which focused primarily on growing the sector’s economic value. This rapid growth resulted in some negative impacts for international students.

“The new Strategy recognises a maturing industry and strikes a balance between sustainable growth and marking a clear commitment to the student experience. The focus on wellbeing and student experience supports our ongoing efforts to lift quality across the system.”
 
In line with sector feedback, the Strategy includes some key actions and measurable targets to meet its goals.
“I look forward to international education helping take us into the future,” Chris Hipkins said.