Other pathways to teaching

There are many pathways into your first teaching position. For new graduates it may take some time and perseverance to get there. Where possible stay involved in the education sector. This allows you to continue to gain experience with students and current best practices, and it helps to show your commitment to education.

Relief teaching is one of the most common means of getting a foot in the door. Relief teaching helps you get experience in classroom management, which can be challenging for inexperienced teachers. It’s also a good means of networking with other teachers and management staff. Being known to a school when a position becomes available may give you an advantage.

Taking on short term or long term relieving (LTR) positions is an excellent way to get your first permanent position. LTR positions are also commonly known as fixed term positions. An LTR or fixed term position is usually a position from 6 weeks to 12 months. From this type of role you can demonstrate to a potential employer that you have real experience as a full time teacher. 

Moving to a new location that’s harder to staff is another common path to a permanent position. It’s worth making this change if you can, as it helps you to get that crucial first experience as a full-time teacher.

While working towards your first teaching position, other education based roles such as teacher aide, holiday programme supervisor, after school/homework programme supervisor or private tutor can be good employment options, particularly if you’re working with the  age groups for which you’re qualified. These roles demonstrate to future employers/principals that you’re committed to working with students and have gained further experience. 

All vacancies are advertised in the Education Gazette online. You can search by subject or geographic region, and you can subscribe to be notified of vacancies meeting your criteria. You can either apply directly to schools in response to advertised positions or use the services of a teacher recruitment agency.

New Zealand Teachers Council New Zealand Education Gazette New Zealand Qualifications Authority Immigration New Zealand