Portfolio and the professional criteria

Professional criteria

To be recognised as an ACET, a teacher must demonstrate that they meet each of the following professional criteria:

1. Practice demonstrably higher than the Experienced Teacher Professional Standards. Evidence is needed of practice that demonstrates creativity and innovation with ongoing development built on an evidential base from both research and academic theory, and sound analysis of children’s learning.

2. Explicitly demonstrating positive outcomes for all learners with specific information about meeting the needs of students identified as ‘priority learners’ in Government policy. Evidence is needed of positive student learning outcomes related to the New Zealand Curriculum or Te Marautanga o Aotearoa or other relevant official curriculum documents through taking account of, and planning for the learning needs of all children.

3. Together with each of the following:

a) Exemplary use of evidence and research to inform practice.

Requires multiple sources of evidence and research referenced to inform and develop practice. A clear link between theory and its application to practice must be apparent. This should include evidence of the way it has developed the teacher’s practice

b) Exemplary engagement with families/whānau in improving outcomes for their children.

Requires evidence of a pro-active approach and effective engagement with families/whānau that supports student learning

c) Leadership in developing practice amongst peers.

Requires evidence of strong professional relationships with colleagues that demonstrate leadership in teaching practice

d) Exemplary ongoing professional learning and development.
Requires evidence of ongoing professional learning and development as part of a regular in school appraisal process.

Judgment against ACET professional criteria

“An ACET has systematically gathered evidence of and commentary on measurable outcomes – social, cultural, academic – and shared processes and data with others through engagement with colleagues, families and whānau.”
ACET Evaluation Panel

When your principal makes their recommendation on whether your portfolio should be ACET recognised, they are likely to consider the following points from the evaluation panels:

  • The guidance given to teachers that the panel would need to be able to read a portfolio in 60 minutes had not, in many cases, been heeded. Creating a portfolio is an exercise in being clear and succinct.
  • The evidence presented by teachers was both qualitative and quantitative. That was appropriate and helped to provide a rich picture of the teachers’ practice.
  • All evidence needs to be clearly linked to criteria and to clear claims made about teaching practice.
  • Reference to readings and articles is sufficient.

The ACET criteria have been mapped to a single coherent framework.  The professional framework takes the four key levers for educational improvement from the Best Evidence Synthesis findings and maps the relevant elements of the Experienced Teacher Professional Standards onto each lever.


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