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Free Education costs $34K

Survey reveals true cost of NZ education – Australians Pay Almost Twice as Much as Kiwis

New Zealand families are predicted to pay nearly $28,000 less than their Australian neighbours for a state education, ASG Education Programs New Zealand (ASG)* Planning for Education Index reveals.

The survey found that New Zealanders fare considerably better than their Australian counterparts regarding funding primary and secondary education. For a child born in 2014, families in Australia are estimated to pay more than NZ$66,000 for their son or daughter’s 13-year state education—almost double the cost of an equivalent education here ($38,157).

There is less difference between the costs of private education in both countries. In 2014 it is predicted to cost more than NZ$24,000 to send one child to a private metropolitan secondary school in Australia compared to $21,176 in New Zealand.

The survey of more than 1000 responses from New Zealand Members compiled by the not-for-profit organisation, measures a range of variables including school fees, transport, uniforms, computers, school excursions and sporting trips to determine the cost of education.

ASG’s Planning for Education Index found that a priva


ASG CEO John Velegrinis says, while the information may be sobering for many families, it is vital they understand the true costs associated with their child’s education so they can budget accordingly.te education in New Zealand is estimated to cost $262,310 over 13 years for a child starting primary school this year—more than seven-and-a-half times the cost of a state education.

“We at ASG are passionate about every child having the opportunity to receive a quality education, regardless of wealth, status and capability. It’s clear from the survey we’ve just carried out, that education—whether state, state integrated or private, is a becoming a bigger slice of the family budget and is only predicted to keep increasing.”

Mr Velegrinis says the cost of education in New Zealand has risen by one and a half times the rate of inflation over the past 10 years, while Australia has seen costs rise at twice the rate of inflation over the same period.

Nuiean-born New Zealander, Angeline Hekau prepared for the higher education of her four children through ASG. She works full-time as a nurse (after completing a Master’s Degree in the vocation) and her husband works full-time as a factory worker for a dairy company.

Mrs Hekau says a good education is a key value in her family and was drummed into her from an early age.
“From 1997, when my eldest daughter was two, we began to put money into ASG’s programme to save for her future studies. Now, she is in her first year at university and we are reaping the benefits. With the help of ASG and careful planning, none of my children will have a student loan,” adds Mrs Hekau.

Mr Velegrinis says ASG is committed to helping families plan for their children’s education.
“From as little as $10.00 a week, depending on the age of the child, we can help families prepare and plan for their child’s education and help offset the costs.

“We’ve been providing education solutions for 40 years. Over that time more than AUD$1.8 billion in education benefits have been returned to our Members and their children. As a not-for-profit and member-based organisation, benefits are returned to our Members and their children, rather than shareholders,” says Mr Velegrinis.

ASG’s online Education Costs Calculators available at enables families to estimate the cost of their child’s education.

For comprehensive summary sheets showing the cost of education in New Zealand go to

*The ASG Planning for Education Index was sent to New Zealand and Australian Members in October 2013. It received more than 1000 New Zealand responses and more than 6900 Australian responses. The survey measured a range of variables, including school fees, transport, uniforms, computers, school excursions and sporting trips in the past year. Participants were asked to provide information on what type of school their children attended—state, state integrated or private. A researcher and independent statistician reviewed the data and calculated the future cost of education using the New Zealand Department of Statistics approved CPI indexes. All currency in New Zealand dollars unless where stated. Exchange rate as at 3 January 2014.


ASG CEO John Velegrinis will be available for face-to-face interviews in New Zealand on Thursday 23 January and the morning of Friday 24 January.

For further information and interview opportunities with ASG CEO, John Velegrinis please contact: Penny Hartill, hPR, 09 445 7525, 021 721 424,

Editor’s Notes:

ASG Education Programs New Zealand (ASG) is a not-for-profit and member-driven organisation with a mission to enhance the opportunity for children to gain a complete education. ASG started as a friendly society cooperative in Australia in 1974 by a group of parents who wanted to plan for their child’s education. ASG Education Programs New Zealand commenced in 1990 in New Zealand. Since inception, more than 300,000 families with more than 509,000 children have been enrolled with ASG.

ASG helps create educational opportunities for children and delivers a range of products and resources to families to support their children’s early learning phase right through to post-secondary studies. ASG helps families plan for their children’s education and we offer a proven and proactive way to nurture a child’s education journey and help them reach their full potential and live their dreams. At the same time, ASG supports their family to offset the cost of education. Parents make regular contributions to an education benefit fund that helps to offset education fees and other expenses when they arrive. ASG currently has more than 15,600 New Zealand families and more than 22,500 New Zealand children currently enrolled with ASG. For more information, please visit