The tertiary education union is furious over a proposal from the University of Auckland to assist 21 jobs in its teaching faculty.
During one-on-one talks this week, employees received the news and were told that they had four weeks to give feedback on the decision.
The Tertiary Education Union said the timing of the cuts was inexplicable, given the recent strike action and the worsening teacher shortage.
By 2030, it is expected that the number of students will increase by 50,000 to 850,000, but the number that graduates as a teacher will decrease.
Professor of history history Auckland and trade union secretary Jennifer Frost of the trade union said the decision was premature.
"We have a new government, we are putting together a new strategy for tertiary education and we know that the government carries out all kinds of evaluations at different levels of education."
She said that the level of expertise that was cut off was a concern.
"Pacifica education is being cut, which seems so contradictory, given the size of our Pacifica population, we also see cutbacks in expertise in programs for people with disabilities and these are people who train teachers and tools that our most needy help students. "
Mrs. Frost said the registration numbers & # 39; ebony and flow & # 39; and that it was too early to blame low student numbers.
"In my own case I teach history, but we give a program to train history teachers and that class has doubled this year.
"We know that the university has money in the sense that all these new building and technology projects are underway, so it's not that the funding is not there – it's a choice of how to use that funding."
But the vice-chancellor of the university said that the number of registrations and funding were the problems that led to the proposed job cuts.
Stuart McCutcheon said that the registrations had dropped for years and that retaining staff at one faculty meant that there was less money to employ staff in faculties that grew.
"Between 2015 and this year, the number of students in that faculty dropped by just under 470, which is part of a national trend in which the number of people going to teacher training is falling.
"We buffered the faculty for a few years, we put extra budget in the faculty – more than what was justified by the student numbers."
He denied job loss would lead to a less diverse range of staff expertise.
"We had a group of highly experienced, higher academic staff and they worked through the proposals and they are pleased that the positions proposed to be destroyed do not adversely affect our ability to teach our programs.
"It is quite clear that if it had a negative effect on our educational quality, we would not have made these changes."
Mr. McCutcheon said the university did not make a massive surplus and could not afford to hold excess staff longer than it had already had.
"The core business surplus of the university when you take out one-time and extraordinary items is about $ 40 million – that's a little more than 3 percent of our total revenue and is exactly what the tertiary education committee requires that all institutions must make sure they're financially sustainable .
University lecture (file photo).
"So we produce an actual operating surplus that is at the bottom of the desired range."
He said that all universities involved in teacher training were in the same boat.
The Tertiary Education Union said it was hopeful that the employment proposal would not go ahead, or at least postponed until further discussions had taken place.