Quality Care? Export Education Policies in New Zealand from 1999 to 2002

Andrew Butcher
Vol 23, Number 2, p.21
This paper critically examines export education policies between 1999 and 2002, which is a period of a significant shift toward quality control of the export education industry. It argues that while this shift is at one level concerned with the pastoral care of international students in New Zealand, it more significantly indicates the role of the State in both the funding of, and responsibility for the export education industry. It argues that while there is good reason to examine the policies in this period separately, in that quality issues are brought to the fore for the first time, there are echoes of the educational reforms of the 1980s. This paper uses key official documents to illustrate firstly the official discourse, secondly the underlying assumptions of that discourse, and thirdly, the inherent contradictions in these policies. It also argues that the vague notions of quality are less to do with the provision of pastoral care of international students and more to do with marketing a particular image of New Zealand, at once auditing a disparate industry and protecting a national reputation.