6 Aug 2015

Taranaki tech marked low for performance

9:17 am on 6 August 2015

The Taranaki polytechnic that was forced to withdraw the qualifications of about 400 Maori performing arts students last year is bottom of the heap in the sector's latest performance ratings.

The Western Institute of Technology in New Plymouth was forced to refund almost $4 million in Government funding, after an investigation found irregularities in its diploma and certificate level Maori performing arts courses.

Data released by the Tertiary Education Commission this week for 2014, ranks WITT the worst performer of 18 institutes for courses and qualifications completed.

The qualifications completed category sits at 60 percent, down almost 20 percent on 2013, when the polytechnic was ranked fifth.

WITT had 35 percent of students who were Maori last year, down 9 percent on the previous year.

The institute rates best for retaining students for the second year with 77 percent.