Kerre McIvor

Kerre McIvor is a Herald on Sunday columnist

Kerre Woodham: Money, privacy bad mix

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Young adult students are either financially dependent on their parents, or they're not - therefore parents' incomes shouldn't impact student allowances. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Young adult students are either financially dependent on their parents, or they're not - therefore parents' incomes shouldn't impact student allowances. Photo / Mark Mitchell

If tertiary institutions are going to regard young adults up to the age of 24 as financially dependent on their parents, then please don't quote the Privacy Act to me when I ring up to confirm the final payment for my daughter's uni fees.

Yes, I know I should have had the invoice in front of me. But, for a fleeting moment, there was sufficient money for me to make an online transaction and settle the account for the academic year.

But, although I had her student ID and birthdate, and I wanted to GIVE them money - not get money out of them, I still had the Privacy Act quoted to me.

Surely you can't have it both ways? Young adult students are either financially dependent on their parents, in which case the bills are the parents' business, or they're not and parents' incomes shouldn't be taken into account when it comes to student allowances for them.

At least I struck a reasonable person at the other end of the phone. We came to an arrangement whereby I told him how much I thought it was, and I asked, "If I pay that amount into the university coffers, will I be hearing any more from you?" No, he said, and both of us hung up with some relief.

- Herald on Sunday

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