he pitopito kōrero

He Pitopito Kōrero
COVID-19 update - 8 February 2022

08 February 2022
he pitopito kōrero

He Pitopito Kōrero
COVID-19 update - 8 February 2022

08 February 2022

Kia ora koutou,

I hope you all enjoyed a restful long weekend.

One of the concerns I’ve heard expressed in the last week has been about the potential impact of roll reductions as a result of COVID-19. If this is something that you believe may affect you, please find information below.

An update on mask orders: since our website went live last Monday, we have received 2,463 orders and have dispatched 2,622 cartons of medical-grade masks. An additional three million masks arrived over the weekend and the stock is currently being processed and distributed. This is enough masks to see us through until the next supply arrives in mid-February – please find a further update on mask supply below.

A reminder that masks can be used safely over a period of time. This reduces the number of masks you need and reduces landfill, too!

Hei te Rāpare, you can expect the next bulletin on Thursday,

Further information on booster vaccines

As we detailed in our bulletin on 25 January, COVID-19 booster doses are now required for all people who are affected by the mandatory vaccination requirements.

Mandatory booster doses – School Bulletin 25 January

As we previously advised, workers who received their second vaccination on or before 30 August 2021 will need to have had their booster by 1 March 2022 to continue working on site. Workers who received their second vaccination from 31 August 2021 onward will need to receive their booster shot within 183 days of their second shot.

As you will know, the minimum time between receiving a second COVID-19 vaccination and a booster dose has been reduced from four months to three months.

We encourage everyone to have their booster after three months, but this does not change the legal requirement that everyone who is covered by the mandatory vaccination requirements must have their booster by 1 March 2022 or 183 days after their second shot.

We understand this may put your school under pressure to determine when a person must have received their booster dose and we appreciate your mahi.

We have attached a template letter that you can you provide to your employees, contractors, and volunteers outlining these requirements.

Template letter: Mandatory vaccine booster requirements for staff of schools and kura [DOCX, 17 KB]

Below are two examples here to help show how the booster requirements apply in practice.

Scenario 1

Maria’s second COVID-19 vaccination was on 20 August 2021.

Maria is required to have received a booster dose by 1 March 2022 as more than 183 days have passed since her second vaccination.

Scenario 2

Lincoln’s second COVID-19 vaccination was on 15 December.

Even though the mandated date for Lincoln’s booster dose is 1 March, Lincoln is not required to receive a booster by this date. Instead, Lincoln must receive a booster dose by 16 June 2022, 183 days after receiving the second vaccination. Lincoln can continue working onsite during this period.

Lincoln will, however, be eligible to receive his booster dose any time from 15 March 2022, three months after his second vaccination.

Update: Supply of masks to schools

Our limited supply of masks (2,000 cartons) from the Ministry of Health has now been distributed.

The ordering system was set up to receive and process orders with instructions on calculating usage based on schooling staff. For some schools, the calculations were incorrect, and the order was therefore rejected. In those instances, schools should have been advised that their order was rejected and to re-submit with revised number(s).

However, due to a glitch in the system the automated message was not pushed out and this was picked up on Thursday 3 February. If you haven’t received your order or have not heard from us, please make contact.

Please know our team has been working hard in the background and the affected schools have been prioritised for delivery. All of the MOH-provided stock has left the three distribution centres for delivery.

We are receiving another consignment of 1,500 cartons today and the team is working to process and distribute this as soon as is practicable. Our supplier is working with their courier network to include additional runs.

For more information, please email askus.procurement@education.govt.nz.

Use of masks throughout the day

An additional reminder that the Ministry of Health has also advised that there is no specific time limit for how long a single-use mask is effective, and you do not necessarily need to change your mask regularly throughout the day.

School staff are able to wear a medical mask until it is damp, soiled or damaged.

Your current stock should be sufficient until we have our supply chain fully stocked and running.

Practical advice for schools and teachers as we adjust to mask wearing

As you and your ākonga return to the daily routines of teaching and learning, mask wearing will mean some changes to your daily routines.

We know that some ākonga will be more impacted by mask use and have developed some ideas to support these changes, particularly for those supporting students with additional learning or sensory needs, including ākonga who are Deaf or hard of hearing.

Additional tips for schools and kura around mask wearing – Te Mahau

Concerns regarding the potential impact of roll reduction

If you are in a position where you believe your funding may be temporarily impacted by more than 10% due to an increase in home schooling applications, please contact our resourcing team at resourcing@education.govt.nz and we’ll work with you on a solution.

Please note, provisional staffing entitlements provide schools with a guaranteed minimum number of staff for the coming year so that they can plan and make staffing decisions with confidence.

These entitlements are not adjusted downwards during the year if the actual March roll generates less staffing than the provisional roll. Staffing entitlements will be adjusted upwards during the year if the roll significantly increases – that is, for the 2022 year, schools will not face a reduction in their staffing entitlement if their roll is lower than their provisional roll due to a temporary increase in home schooling.

Class border exception changes

In July 2021, Minister Hipkins announced a class border exception to allow up to 300 overseas-qualified teachers to come to New Zealand to work in eligible early learning services, schools and kura.

Each successful employer application provides a critical purpose visa for one teacher, along with their partner and children.

Following Cabinet approval in late December 2021, the initial eligibility criteria has been widened to include:

  • all state and state-integrated schools and kura regardless of their decile
  • teachers of all subjects, not just STEM.

We have also removed the cap of two applications per school and we have advised both existing border exception applicants and employers who have previously been in contact but did not meet the initial eligibility criteria.

Approximately half of the 300 border exception places remain available.

Updated information is available on our website and inquiries can be made by contacting border.exceptions@education.govt.nz.

Border exceptions for teachers – Te Mahau

2021 financial reporting: School payroll information

Each year we provide payroll information to help you prepare your financial statements.

The 2021 annual reporting guidelines provide guidance on how to record the information from your school annual accrual report (SAAR) in your financial statements.

2021 annual reporting guidelines – Ministry of Education

Once you have received your SAAR, you can complete your draft financial statements.

We encourage you to complete your draft financial statements as soon as possible after receipt of your SAAR, to enable you to meet reporting deadlines.

Key dates:

4 February

The following reports will be available through Novopay Online using the authorised user’s username and password:

  • SAAR
  • Leave liability reports

The following reports will be available through the Secure Data Portal:

  • Over-payments error schedule
  • Stop pays error schedule
  • Funding code error schedule

11 March

Payroll exception schedules will be provided to schools through the Secure Data Portal. 

A complete set of payroll reports and exception schedules will be provided through our appointed auditor Microsoft Teams file-sharing portal to auditors for the schools they will be auditing.

31 March

Statutory deadline for schools to submit draft financial statements to their auditors.

31 May

Statutory deadline for schools to submit their annual reports, including audited financial statements, to the Ministry.

Note: Payroll files are password protected and the password is your school principal’s MOE employee number.

  • Where a new principal has started in 2022, the password will be the MOE employee number of the most recent principal in 2021.
  • The password does not include any preceding zeros of the MOE employee number.

Additional financial information required to complete your financial statements

If relevant to your school or kura, the following transactions and balances need to be included in your financial statements:

  • intervention costs paid directly by the Ministry
  • Ka ora, Ka Ako | Healthy School Lunches programme paid directly by the Ministry
  • free period products in schools and kura paid directly by the Ministry
  • the balance of any debt owed to the Ministry at 31 December 2021.

This information will be made available via the Secure Data Portal on Friday February 4. This is important information for inclusion in your financial statements and should be provided to your service provider or business manager.

Need help?

If you have any questions about the payroll data provided, please email support@novapay.govt.nz with ‘School audit’ in the subject line.

If you have any questions about preparing your 2021 annual financial statements, please contact your school finance advisor.

Contact details for managing school finances – Ministry of Education

End-of-year withdrawals in ENROL

Thank you to all schools that have done their 2021 end-of-year withdrawals in ENROL.

If you have not completed this yet, please do this as soon as possible – it is difficult for other schools to enrol these students if they are not withdrawn from their previous school.

Prior to doing this, please give attention to the following.

  • Only select students who were leavers last year.
  • Enter the actual last day of attendance and select the actual leaving year level as it would have been at the end of last year.
  • Only withdraw your excluded students if they are now enrolled at another school or have turned 16.
  • Let Attendance Services know if you are wanting to withdraw a student with an unjustified absence.
  • Tick the ‘teaching and learning notes’ in ENROL or in your student management system if you want to communicate notes about a student to a future school.

Term 4 2021 attendance collection is underway

We are currently collecting attendance, absence and truancy data for Term 4 from all state and state-integrated schools with an electronic attendance register (eAR).

This is an important aspect of our work on absenteeism and truancy by using evidence from schools to monitor trends, understand drivers and target resources. To achieve the best results, we need data from as many schools as possible, including schools who have good attendance records.

Thank you to all schools who have already sent their Term 4 2021 attendance data. By now you should have received an attendance (Every Day Matters) report tailored to your school, which can be helpful in identifying students and groups who might benefit from targeted interventions to improve attendance.

If you have not yet submitted your attendance, please create the attendance file from your student management system (SMS) for all of Term 4 and send it to us via your SMS (instructions have been emailed to your administrator).

This data is due by Friday 25 February.

2021 notional lease now available

The 2021 notional lease information is now available through the property portal.

2021 notional lease information [PDF, 747 KB]

This information is required by your accountant or the person(s) that prepare your year-end financial statements. The information is for accounting purposes only – you do not need to pay this amount.

Lease charges should be treated as an expense in your 'statement of comprehensive revenue and expense', offset by a corresponding income entry in the same statement. The net impact on the “bottom line” is zero.

How the lease amount is calculated

The ‘notional’ lease amount is calculated by applying a % rate determined by the Ministry to the value of Ministry-owned school property. This figure is then adjusted by any lease costs directly paid by the Ministry.

This year, the underlying factors which are used to calculate the notional lease have changed significantly. Therefore – you would expect some changes from last year.

Generally, you may see a decrease in your notional lease number as we decreased the notional rate from 8% to 5% to reflect the latest Government capital charge rate.

In the event there is an increase in your notional lease number, this could be caused by:

  • the creation of new school property assets
  • the disposal of school property assets
  • a significant uplift of valuation for school land and buildings (due to increase in construction costs)
  • a re-evaluation of the remaining useful life of those assets
  • any impairment or any changes in lease costs directly paid by the Ministry.

For further information please email EISfinance.mailbox@education.govt.nz.

Term 1 and 2 ESOL funding applications

Applications for Terms 1 and 2 are due by Tuesday 1 March.

See the ELLP guidelines, student assessment forms and application forms on our website.

ESOL funding – Ministry of Education

Please update the 2021 Period 2 (Terms 3 and 4) status list and update lists for new students.

Additional information explaining the ESOL funding application process can be seen on the following flow chart and FAQ.

ESOL funding flowchart 2022 [PFD, 179 KB]

FAQs and additional guidelines 2022 [PDF, 405 KB]

Schools who received ESOL funding in August 2021

Use the Secure Data Portal to submit your updated status list by Tuesday 1 March.

Secure Data Portal – Applications & Online Systems

Ask your school’s Secure Data Portal user to upload the updated status list in Excel format.

If you are not sure who your school’s Secure Data Portal user is, please check with a colleague, your principal or office manager.

Schools who did not receive ESOL funding in August 2021

Use this form to apply for ESOL funding:

ESOL funding application [XLSX, 69 KB]

Upload the updated form in Excel format through the Secure Data Portal by Tuesday 1 March.

We will inform your school of the ESOL funding allocation via email and upload the 2022 Period 1 status list with the details of all the students funded for Terms 1 and 2 on the Secure Data Portal approximately five weeks after applications close.

Please ask your Secure Data Portal user for access to the status list.


Zoom sessions to help with ESOL applications

Our ESOL team will be hosting two optional Zoom sessions explaining how to apply for ESOL funding.

These sessions are targeted at those who are new to the role of applying for ESOL funding or those who would like a refresher.

Please note we will also include information about the use of the Secure Data Portal.

These are open sessions and registration is not necessary. The sessions will cover the same content, so it is not necessary to attend both.

Join a support session

Wednesday 16 February from 3:15-4pm
ESOL application support – Zoom

Meeting ID: 886 6489 4486
Passcode: 343408


Thursday 17 February from 3:15-4pm
ESOL application support – Zoom
Meeting ID: 870 8643 7993
Passcode: 031777

TeachNZ scholarships open

If you know someone looking to complete a teaching qualification, TeachNZ scholarships are open.

Scholarships – TeachNZ

Scholarships pay for their recipient’s course fees and provide a $10,000 total allowance over the duration of study.

  • Applications for Te Huarau and Te Tipu Whakarito scholarships can be made for any teaching subject or sector. Priority is given to applications for:
    • science, engineering, technology, maths and te reo Māori
    • Early learning and Māori-medium.
  • Kupe scholarships are open to Māori and Pacific high achievers who wish to study in any teaching subject or sector.

Applications opened on Tuesday 1 February and close on Monday 28 February.

Earlier versions of He Pitopito Kōrero:

View all previous issues of He Pitopito Kōrero here