TEACHERS and students rallied at the front of the Kingscliff TAFE today to object to funding and course cuts made by the NSW Government.
Greens NSW MP Dr John Kaye joined the rally, describing the cuts as "a catastrophe."
"The O'Farrell government's slashing of the public education budget will see teaching positions lost, courses cut and students' fees rise by 9.5%," he said.
"These budget cuts will hit the north coast harder than many other parts of the state.
"The economic and social future of the north coast depends upon a strong skills base.
Dr Kaye will called on local north coast Nationals MPs Thomas George (Lismore), Don Page (Ballina) and Geoff Provost (Tweed) to listen to the serious concerns raised by their constituents and to lobby their Liberal city-based colleagues premier Barry O'Farrell and treasurer Mike Baird to abandon their cost-cutting agenda for TAFE.
Teachers' Federation representative and director of studies at Kingscliff TAFE, Therese Murphy said the TAFE had already lost IT and Creative Industry courses.
Dr Kaye said the state government had not been elected on the basis of "taking away jobs."
"The O'Farrell government is robbing this state of millions of dollars," he said.
Dr Kaye said students with special needs would bear the brunt of the cuts.
"They are being thrown on the scrap heap," he said.
"The "E" in TAFE stands for education.
"We need to give people the education and skills to participate in society."