A review of disability services at EIT's Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti campuses has left students affected disappointed and wanting answers.
EIT marketing executive director Brenda Chapman said the objective of the internal review is to identify the best ways to provide effective and sustainable services to all EIT students with disabilities and the most appropriate support to all staff who work with these students.
"It is good business practice to undertake reviews, reflect on how an organisation does things, and consider improvement.
"Within the tertiary education sector, institutes are required to meet the NZQA External Evaluation Review which means ongoing review of our teaching and business practices."
She said they had communicated with students who use the disability service and those who specifically requested disability service support when they enrolled with EIT.
Bachelor of Business Studies student Karl Jager, who suffers from a spinal injury and a stress-related mental injury, said the concern among a number of students is that "often when something says they are going to do a review of services it means they are probably going to cut the services or at least cut the amount of funding that is available".
A meeting with students was held yesterday, where about five people attended. Jager believes it helped to clarify certain things.
"I think there is still an underlying worry about what will actually happen and whether they will listen to anything we've said.
" It was basically up to us to find out about it and then register our interest. An email should have gone out to everyone under the disability umbrella and that was not what happened."
Fellow student Honty Whaanga suffers from chronic back pain and mental health issues and said the services had been exemplary. But, he said, "It is concerning when the word review is mentioned."
Chapman said the approach was to identify the services provided and explore their effectiveness. Factors considered include the government's Tertiary Education Strategy requiring TEIs to focus on learning outcomes for priority learners, EIT's strategic priorities and the objectives in the EIT Annual Plan, the funding and policy environment and limitations on resources available, relevant legislation and compliance issues and EIT's enrolment processes, and differences between campuses and regional learning centres regarding the numbers of students requiring support and how it should be provided.
She confirmed there would be no funding cuts. The report is expected to be completed by the end of this month.