Some staff at the EIT in Taradale will be taking time-out from morning and afternoon breaks and their lunchtimes on Wednesday to show their concerns about Government tertiary education rationalisation proposals.

It's part of a Tertiary Education Union day of action, but TEU campaigns and communications officer Sandra Grey says it's non-disruptive, with staff out to highlight the importance of polytechs and staff in their communities.

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The union says funding is the issue, and Grey says it was something Government warned of at least 18 months ago but which it has the chance to do something about without disrupting or lessening the educational opportunities provided by the 16 institutes nationwide.

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TEU member and EIT staff member Gordon Reid says any cuts would "cut across" the Government's own wellbeing promises, with courses put at risk.

"It doesn't need to be this way," he says. "A very tiny portion of the Government's $7 billion surplus would stabilise the polytechs."

The union is asking the nation to "stand with us on our day of action" and tell the Government to better fund the polytechnic institutes.