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"Reset button" should be pressed on Go8 for failure to back increased uni funding

Lee Rhiannon 1 Apr 2015

Responding to the decision of the Group of Eight to end their support for the Abbott government university deregulation plan Greens higher education spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said:

"Having pulled the plug on the Pyne higher education plan the Go8 should now throw their weight behind securing funding for our public universities.

"The Go8 call for the ‘reset button' to be pressed on higher education should apply to these elite universities themselves as their actions have done such a disservice to staff, students and other universities.

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Op ed: Out Of The Ashes Of Deregulation, A New Vision For Public Universities Must Rise

Lee Rhiannon 30 Mar 2015

Lee's opinion piece on the future of higher education in Australia published today.

Last week, students across the country came together to fight the Abbott government’s agenda for higher education.

The National Day of Action, which came off the back of the two-time defeat of Education Minister Christopher Pyne’s university deregulation bill, shows that the community has rejected the government’s plan.

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Greens call for UoW managers to end all donations to Liberal Party coffers

Commenting on reports that representatives of the University of Wollongong have paid to attend Liberal Party fundraisers, Greens spokesperson for higher education Senator Lee Rhiannon said:

“University of Wollongong’s senior managers should come clean the thousands of dollars that have flowed to the Liberal Party from the university – and several of its university-controlled entities.

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Senate calls on Pyne to fix public funding fiasco

The Australian Senate has today passed a Greens motion calling on the Federal Liberal party to return the $15 million of public funds it spent advertising its failed party higher education policy.

“Christopher Pyne might call himself a ‘fixer’, but his efforts to blackmail the Senate have failed – and so have his attempts to brainwash the Australian public.

“The Abbott government set aside nearly $15 million to spend advertising its doomed plan for $100,000 degrees.

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Motions: Abbott government

Lee Rhiannon 24 Mar 2015

Senator RHIANNON (New South Wales) (15:49): I move:

That the Senate-
(a) notes That the Abbott Government has allocated $14.6 million in public funding to advertise its failed higher education changes; and
(b) calls on the Abbott Government to:
(i) direct the Federal Liberal Party to return the $14.6 million of public money allocated to its higher education advertising campaign, and
(ii) shut down its publicly funded highered.gov.au site, which was designed to advertise the failed changes.

Question agreed to.

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Christopher Pyne from desperate to delusional

Lee Rhiannon 18 Mar 2015

Commenting on Education Minister Christopher Pyne’s announcement that he will reintroduce legislation to deregulate university fees for a third time, Greens higher education spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said:

“Christopher Pyne has gone from desperate to delusional. His deregulation agenda has been comprehensively rejected by university staff, students, the community, and the parliament – twice.”

Senator Rhiannon has also called on the federal Liberal Party to return $15 million spent on advertising this failed party policy.

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Abbott’s higher education cuts Bill defeated again – big win for the community

Lee Rhiannon 17 Mar 2015

Tonight the Australian Senate again voted down the Abbott government's higher education Bill.

The Bill was defeated by 34 votes to 30 votes. Green and Labor Senators were joined by Senators Lambie, Muir, Lazarus, Wang, and Xenophon to defeat the Bill.

The Australian Greens have congratulated the tens of thousands of students, families, teachers, parents and unions that took a stand against the Abbott government’s war against public universities.

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Speech: Higher Education and Research Reform Bill 2014 Second Reading

Lee Rhiannon 17 Mar 2015

Senator RHIANNON (New South Wales) (12:55): The Greens oppose the Higher Education and Research Reform Bill 2014. What a saga Minister Pyne has inflicted on the people of Australia! For months, students, prospective students and their families have been living with uncertainty about their university prospects. Will they be able to afford to go? What is going to happen with the way our universities are managed?

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Pyne on the run – to another defeat

Lee Rhiannon 16 Mar 2015

Commenting on Education Minister Christopher Pyne’s decision to split his higher education Bill, Greens higher education spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said:

“Christopher Pyne’s announcement is the latest desperate manoeuvre from a desperate government. Having lost several key votes in the Senate, the government’s plan to split the Bill is a last-ditch attempt to save face by avoiding a negative vote.

“Mr Pyne’s plan for $100,000 degrees and massive cuts to universities has not changed. 

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Time for Tony Abbott to pull Pyne into line and secure Australian research

With the government’s higher education bill set to fail in the Senate this week, the Australian Greens have called on Tony Abbott to withdraw his government’s higher education Bill and pull Education Minister Christopher Pyne into line and confirm funding for Australian research infrastructure.

“Support for fee deregulation is crumbling. The Senate crossbench looks set to join university students, staff, and the community who have already rejected these reforms,” said Greens higher education spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon.

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