he pitopito kōrero

He Pitopito Kōrero
Update - 5 April 2022

05 April 2022
he pitopito kōrero

He Pitopito Kōrero

Update - 5 April 2022

Tēnā koutou katoa me ngā mihi ki a koutou kua mahi – greetings all, thank you for your hard work throughout Term 1.

This is the last (planned) bulletin for the term, though we may need to send a brief update if there are any changes made following next week’s review of the traffic light settings.

For those of you wanting to plan before the school holidays for any change, you’ll find key differences between traffic light settings outlined below.

I wanted to acknowledge the milestone you hit recently, completing two full years of leading, teaching and learning under the quick-fire demands made by the global pandemic and the Government’s response to it.

And so, I thank you again for your adaptability, hard work, leadership and resilience. Please take some time to rest these school holidays. Enjoy the break.

Mauri ora,

Health measures at Red, Orange and Green

A reminder that an outline of the health measures recommended at each traffic light is on our website:

Health measures at Red, Orange and Green – Te Mahau

Download a summary of the COVID-19 Protection Framework – Te Mahau

A quick guide to risk assessment and controls

We have developed a guide to risk assessment and controls, which complements the risk assessment for COVID-19 guidance shared previously and is adapted from the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 practical guide.

Quick guide: Risk assessment and controls [DOCX, 202 KB]

Health and Safety at Work Act 2015: Practical guide [PDF, 1.2 MB]

Risk assessment for COVID-19 – Te Mahau

The guide can be used to support your risk assessment and health and safety review. It covers:

  • the role of the board as PCBU
  • managing risks
  • assessing risks
  • risk register template
  • key considerations for COVID-19.

Implementing health and safety measures beyond the framework

As part of your risk assessment and health and safety review process, some of you may be considering introducing additional policies to minimise risk of COVID-19.

If you are considering policies that go beyond the relevant health order – for example, you may be thinking about requiring face masks indoors at Orange – you will need to explain why the additional mitigations are proportionate to the situation and level of risk.

It is essential to engage your staff and it is desirable to consult with your school community when your board is developing or reviewing health and safety policies.

Following consultation, if you do choose to implement additional measures above the framework requirements you will also need to specify the consequences for a student or employee not following those measures.

Asking that a child not attend school should not be a disciplinary option you use.

You’ll be aware that removing any student from school for disciplinary reasons is a process that the requires the principal to stand-down or suspend that student. 

Community consultation – NZSTA

Education (Stand-Down, Suspension, Exclusion, and Expulsion) Rules 1999 – NZ Legislation

Ventilation assistance in Term 2

You will need to adopt new approaches to maintain good ventilation during colder weather.

The Te Mahau website provides advice on how you can maintain good fresh airflow on cold, wet and windy days.

Ventilation on colder days – Te Mahau

Assessing ventilation for Term 2

To help schools assess their ventilation, at the start of Term 2 we will be offering more portable CO2 monitors to all state and state-integrated schools. 

Ahead of the new term, take another look at our classroom ventilation assessment toolkit for guidance on how to use portable CO2 monitor/s to help you assess ventilation in different areas.

Classroom ventilation assessment toolkit – Ministry of Education

If your monitoring suggests you need ventilation assistance, please contact your property advisor or email ventilation.mailbox@education.govt.nz.

Portable air cleaners

If we haven’t already been in touch, we will be contacting all state and state-integrated schools to confirm whether you’d like to receive a limited number of portable air cleaner/s.

Portable air cleaners are useful tools in areas that are challenging to ventilate well.

Ventilation in schools – Te Mahau

If you have any ventilation concerns, please email ventilation.mailbox@education.govt.nzAdditional portable air cleaners can be urgently deployed to schools with an identified need.

Resourcing for COVID-19 costs

We understand that many of you are already thinking about staffing for the 2023 school year.

As you know, the peak roll for most schools is the July roll. This is one of the inputs we use when setting the provisional rolls for the following year and the information we receive in July allows us to assess any impact on entitlement staffing for the 2023 school year. As such, we need this information before we can consider what options might be available to support the continuity of our workforce.

However, this year 90% of schools are staffed on their provisional roll. As such, entitlement staffing is guaranteed from this point forward and we know your focus will therefore be on managing your operational budget.

If COVID-19-related costs are putting pressure on your school’s finances, we encourage you to look at some of the resources currently available to you and ensure you are receiving everything you are entitled to. These are outlined below.

Additional options for resourcing

1. Check your utilisation of banking staffing

Could your staffing entitlement be used instead of using operational funding for staffing?

We will soon be organising training sessions on banking staffing for those who are interested. Find further information about banking staffing on our website.

Banking staffing – Ministry of Education

2. Explore alternative staffing options for in-person teaching and learning

Template: Exploring staffing options [DOCX, 150 KB]

Guidance for pandemic readiness – School Bulletin 1 February

  • Where a teacher is supporting hybrid/online learning while working from home, physical supervision in the classroom does not have to be provided by a qualified teacher.
  • Explore employing someone with a Limited Authority to Teach (LAT) on a short-term basis. We are working with the Teaching Council to ensure that police vets are approved at pace.

3. Request that any 2021 banking staffing overuse is repaid in instalments

This can be done by contacting resourcing@education.govt.nz.

4. Check that you have applied for any relief funding that you may be entitled to

Details about relief funding and how to apply are on our website.

Additional relief funding – Te Mahau

  • For teachers, your school’s board must cover the first four days of a COVID-19 staff-related absence (reduced from eight days) during Term 1. After four days, relief funding can be claimed from the additional relief teacher funding (ARTF).
  • Relief funding for non-teaching staff can be claimed from the first day of a COVID-19 staff-related absence during Term 1 from the additional relief funding for non-teaching staff.
  • If a short-term reliever becomes sick with COVID-19 while contracted to work at your school or kura you may need to backfill their absence and cover their sick leave. In this case, please contact your Te Mahau office to apply for special reasons support to backfill a reliever due to a COVID-19 absence.

5. Check that you are receiving release time allowances for eligible teachers

See eligibility criteria and details about how to apply (for example, for beginning teachers, overseas and retrained teachers) on our website.

Teacher-specific staffing allowances – Ministry of Education

6. Additional options

We also suggest you look at:

  • reducing or deferring discretionary items of spend
  • deferring non-critical asset replacement
  • reviewing existing or expiring contracts for value for money.

7. Further support

If you need support investigating any of these areas, please contact your school finance advisor.

Contact details for managing school finances – Ministry of Education

Te Rourou Whai Hua: Learning support resource hub

We have created a resource hub called Te Rourou Whai Hua for learning support coordinators (LSCs), SENCo and any other kaiako responsible for learning support.

Te Rourou Whai Hua – Learning Support Network

Te Rourou is a collection and curation of resources, links, tools and websites already available to educators in Aotearoa.

It is designed around the same collaborative inquiry process that RTLB and our Te Mahau learning support specialists use in their work. This is to support a shared approach and common language in the work LSCs and SENCo do with others in learning support.

Te Rourou is hosted on the same learning management platform as the Learning Support Network. 

2021-2023 audit fees

The amount of audit fees payable for 2021, 2022 and 2023 have recently been agreed with your auditor.

We understand that for many of you these audit fees are significantly higher than in previous years. For those of you who have experienced an increase in your base audit fee between 2020 and 2021, additional funding will be included in your July 2022 operational funding instalment to help cover this cost.

From 2022 onward, schools will be required to meet the increased cost of audit fees from their operational funding.

If you have any questions regarding funding for your 2021 audit fees, please contact resourcing@education.govt.nz.

Confirmed staffing process after your provisional staffing entitlement

If your school has a 2022 provisional staffing entitlement greater than that generated by your 1 March roll return, you will receive a letter through your Secure Data Portal on Wednesday 4 May.

This letter advises that if you have a difference greater than 1 FTTE, you’ll need to seek Ministry approval to make permanent teaching appointments during 2022.

Those schools that have a difference between 0.1-0.9 FTTE are advised to undertake an environmental scan before proceeding to make further appointments.

Banking staffing final balance letters

As part of the end-of-year banking staffing process, your school will receive a letter notifying you of your final balance.

This letter advises whether you have a nil balance, underuse or overuse balance, and provides next steps where necessary. For any under and overuse, we have calculated the reimbursement and recovery amount respectively. These payments/recoveries will be included in your July Operational Grant payment.

You will be able to view your banking staffing letter on the Secure Data Portal from Wednesday 13 April. 

See here for a reminder of how to use the Secure Data Portal:

Secure Data Portal – Applications & Online Systems

Internal controls for payroll

EdPay has prepared guidance which outlines key payroll internal controls. The guidance is designed to assist you to strengthen your payroll internal control environment using the functionality available in EdPay.

The following guidance is now available for download from the training section of EdPay’s website:

  • school payroll internal processes and controls
  • how to use EdPay transaction histories
  • checking transactions using the activity history and timesheet and leave histories in Edpay  

EdPay Training – Education Payroll


If you have any questions about implementing payroll internal controls, please contact your school finance advisor.

If you need support to access transaction reports from the EdPay system, please contact your EdPay payroll advisor.

Contact details for managing school finances – Ministry of Education

Remediation for funding code errors

We have undertaken a review of historical funding code errors. Most funding code errors occurred between 2012 and 2015 and these balances have remained unsettled.

A funding code error occurs when payroll transactions are incorrectly coded to teacher salaries (TS), central funding (CF) or bulk grant (BG) within the payroll system. Funding code errors can result in amounts that are payable either by a school to the Ministry or by the Ministry to a school.

To ensure that no school is out of pocket, all outstanding transactions dated prior to 30 June 2021 will now be settled in the following way:

  • if the sum of your funding code errors results in an amount owed (payable), the debt will be written off
  • if you have previously made payment to settle a funding code error debt, you will receive a payment in July 2022
  • if the sum of your funding code errors results in a reimbursement (receivable), you will receive a payment in July 2022.

Cumulative errors over several years should no longer occur.

Each year we advise you of the value of funding code errors for your school and ask you to record these balances in your annual financial statements when they are material. The decision to settle the outstanding balances will alter the values to be recorded in your 2021 financial statements.

If your school is affected by the funding code remediation, we will soon be in touch regarding the settlement values and the adjusting accounting entries required.

If you have any questions about the funding code error remediation, please contact your school finance advisor.

Replacing the ESL delegated authoriser form

We are replacing the delegated authoriser Education Sector Logon (ESL) form to make access to our applications more streamlined. Users can now also provide their own access to applications through their online delegated authoriser.

The ‘ESL 100 Online Delegated Authoriser form’ (which will be replacing all delegated authoriser forms) will be loaded on the Applications & Online Systems website tomorrow Wednesday 6 April.

Education Sector Logon – Applications & Online Systems

Get involved: Bullying-Free New Zealand Week

A reminder that Bullying-Free NZ Week 2022 is coming up soon and will take place from Monday 16 May to Friday 20 May.

This year’s Bullying-Free NZ week is about focussing on the positive mahi that is already happening in your school communities to support safe, inclusive cultures where everyone is being heard and listened to, and where everyone feels they belong.

Let's spread the word and aroha.

Who are your local legends?

We are on a hunt for “local legends” and would love to hear from you.

No matter how big or small the action might be, together we can shine a light on people already doing things that make a difference and inspire others to do the same and that help to promote a safe and inclusive environment for ākonga.

Nomination of a local legend – Bullying-Free NZ

What you can do during Bullying-Free New Zealand Week

Visit our website for resources such as packs for teachers, students, and parents and whānau information on how to prevent bullying.

Information, resources and tools – Bullying-Free NZ

PLD opportunities

Developing hybrid learning

Your school or kura is still able to access up to 25 hours of PLD support to develop understanding, processes and resources that support quality learning for all ākonga regardless of whether they are in school or learning from home.

Hybrid learning PLD support – Professional Learning & Development

Due to the success of the initiative in responding to the immediate needs of schools and kura and the continued COVID-19 landscape, the 25 hours of hybrid learning PLD support will continue to be available throughout 2022 or until such time as it is no longer needed. 

Our intention is that this support will be given to any school or kura that requires assistance delivering hybrid teaching and learning and/or contingency planning, regardless of any existing PLD allocations. For those schools or kura who have a valid need for the extra PLD support, it could include receiving more than one round of 25 hours PLD.

We are happy to support cluster/Kāhui Ako applications to reduce the administration processes for schools – for example, you might submit one application to spread 125 hours of the PLD across five schools.

Contact your Te Mahau PLD team to discuss your request for support.

Find out how to contact regional PLD teams – Professional Learning & Development

You can find detailed instructions for the application process on the PLD website.

Reminder: Just-In-Time Maths

Hurry, applications for Just-In-Time Maths PLD support close this Thursday 7 April.

Just-In-Time Maths PLD support – Professional Learning & Development

Teachers of learners in Years 4-8 are eligible to participate in this PLD and you can nominate up to two teachers to receive this support. Your school’s PLD Leader (with the corresponding PLD lead permissions in ESL) will be able to submit an application for your school.

Application outcomes will be notified to schools and kura in the first week of Term 2. PLD delivery is scheduled to begin in Term 2 and run until the end of Term 4.

For further key dates and information about this PLD support and access to the application form, visit the PLD website.

NCEA Level 2 and 3 Pacific studies subject expert group

We’re looking for up to 10 experienced kaiako and experts to be part of the subject expert group (SEG) that will develop subject materials for NCEA Level 2 and 3 Pacific Studies.

Expression of interest for NCEA Level 2 and 3 Pacific studies – NCEA Education

Applicants should:

  • have a proven ability to design or integrate Pacific knowledges, world views, values, principles and practices into teaching and learning
  • be able to commit up to 21 days in 2022/2023 for this mahi, beginning in June 2022.

To apply, send your CV and application (no more than five pages) to ras.review@education.govt.nz by Tuesday 26 April.

Reminder: Draft social sciences content and Vision for Young People

As you know, we’re refreshing The New Zealand Curriculum. In our bulletin on 17 March we announced the new curriculum content and let you know we’re seeking feedback on the draft social sciences content and the new Vision for Young People.

What’s required for the draft social sciences content

We’re after one to two staff members to represent each school, complete a registration form and attend an online workshop.

This workshop will give your staff insight into the content and help you understand what we are asking you to do.

Find more details, including a video on what’s changing in the draft social sciences content, in the bulletin.

Draft social sciences content – School Bulletin 17 March

What’s required for The Vision for Young People

For the first time ever, we have a draft Vision for Young People written by ākonga for ākonga within the refresh of The New Zealand Curriculum.

Now we want to hear from students across the country.

Draft social sciences and Vision for Young People content – Have Your Say

Student engagement open: Student Wellbeing Measures project

The student engagement phase of the Student Wellbeing Measures project is now open for students in Years 7 to 13+.

Engagement options are flexible and include an in-class teacher-facilitated session, an online teacher-facilitated session and individual student learning module. Animated resources and class kit are available.

The student engagement period is open until Thursday 30 June. 

Thank you to those of you across the motu who have already indicated your interest in participating in this mahi and to those who have already returned your student input.

For further information about the Student Wellbeing Measures Project or student engagement opportunities, please contact edkstudent.measures@education.govt.nz.