Frequently asked questions

Select a category below to be taken to questions and answers relating to that topic.

General

Eligibility

Completing the application form

Proposed study

How is the leave awarded?

Study plan requirements

Contribution towards expenses

ECE centre support

Principal and board of trustees/employer support

Submitting my application

 

General

When will I find out the outcome of my application?

You will be notified by Friday 11 October 2019.

What does a Bilingual Education Study Award provide?

A Bilingual Education Study Award provides you with paid leave for study. We cover the relief costs to replace you while you are on study leave, including any holiday pay a relief teacher is entitled to.
The study award also provides a contribution of up to $2,000 towards your course fees.

What will happen if I have applied for the wrong award?

Your application will only be assessed for the award you have applied for. It’s important for you to check the application information to ensure that you are applying for the correct award.

Can I apply for more than one award?

Yes, but you can only accept one award. If you are successful in more than one application, you will be asked to choose which award to accept. Please note you must send in a separate application for each award you apply for.

If my study finishes before the end of the school year, do I need to return back to school?

Yes, you are expected to be at school before and after your study leave. A study award will only fund the relief costs up to the total number of school weeks that you have been awarded.

Do I need to return to the same school after completing my study award?

There is an expectation that you will return to either your previous or a similar role.

What if I am offered a position at a different school/ECE centre which will commence while I am on study leave?
You will need to consider your commitment to the study award and discuss your options with your principal and board of trustees/employer or ECE centre manager/service provider. If your new employer supports your completion of the study award, then you would need to provide us with confirmation of support from your new principal and new board of trustees/employer and principal or ECE centre manager/service provider so your new employer can receive relief teacher funding.

What if I am offered a position at a different school/ECE centre before I take up study leave?

You will need to tell your new principal and board of trustees/employer or ECE centre manager/service provider you have been offered a study award and discuss your options with them. If you then choose not to take up the study award, for any reason, you must advise us as soon as possible.
Note: if you can advise us by mid-December, the study award can be offered to an applicant on the reserve list.

Can I withdraw from a study award?

If you choose to withdraw from the study award, you can apply again in the future with no prejudice. You would just need to let us know in writing that you would like to withdraw from the award prior to taking study leave. We can accept this via email to teacher.studyawards@education.govt.nz.

What if my teaching position is made surplus to requirements after I submit my application?

We provide relief funding to a school while a teacher is away on study leave. If your position is disestablished, you can’t receive a study award, as there is no position to cover the relief costs. Talk to your board of trustees/employer about the options available to you through the surplus staffing provisions. Your proposal for the study award may fit the criteria for the retraining option available through surplus staffing. 

Can I postpone my award until the next year?

No, a study award cannot be postponed. If you need to withdraw from the study award, you can apply again in the future with no prejudice.

What if I begin my study, and I find I cannot complete it?

The study award is given to you for the purpose of completing the study outlined in your study plan. If you are unable to complete the study, please contact us to discuss your options.

Back to top

Eligibility

I am a part-time teacher; can I apply for a 2020 Bilingual Education Study Award?

Yes, if you are permanently employed. If you are offered a study award, the amount of study leave you receive will be pro-rated on the basis of your current full-time teaching equivalent (FTTE). You will need to let us know your current FTTE (an FTTE is equivalent to 25 hours per week, so to work out your proportion of an FTTE divide your number of paid hours per week by 25).

Can I apply for a 2020 Bilingual Education Study Award if I am a long-term reliever or on a fixed-term contract?

No, to be eligible to apply you must be permanently appointed as a full-time or part-time teacher.

My registration is currently subject to confirmation. Can I apply?

Yes, but only if you will receive full registration status by December 2019. 

Please notify us if your registration status changes during the application or selection process.

I am provisionally registered. Can I apply?

No, to be eligible to apply you must be fully registered at the time of application.

Can I apply if I have previously had a study award or sabbatical?

Yes, but please note that one of the assessment factors gives preference to applicants who have not had study leave in the last five years. However, study to complete a qualification will be considered.

Can I apply if I work in a partnership school?

No, you must be working in a state or state-integrated school to apply.

Back to top

Completing the application form

What does full-time teacher equivalent (FTTE) mean?

Full-time teacher equivalent means one full-time teaching position, which has a measure of 25 hours per week (five hours per day).
If you are employed part-time, please make sure you provide your FTTE (which is the number of hours you are employed per week divided by 25), as the leave awarded will be pro-rated on the basis of your part-time hours.

The current employment section of the application form asks for my current designated Māori language setting. How do I know what my designated Māori language setting is?

This is the amount of time you spend teaching in te reo Māori. This is one of the assessment factors that the panel will be looking at, so please make sure you note what level Māori language classroom setting you are currently working in.

For ECE teachers this is shown on your RS61 form. For school teachers and principals there are four levels based on a full time teaching load:

  • Level 1 (81–100%)
  • Level 2 (51–80%)
  • Level 3 (31–50%)
  • Level 4 (12–30%)

For example, to teach at level 1 you may be working 20–25 hours where the instruction is delivered in Māori 81–100% of the time. If you don’t teach in te reo Māori within one of these levels, please write Not Applicable.

Can I include my professional development in my qualifications on the application form (e.g. National Aspiring Principals programme)?

You may describe any aspect of your learning and study in support of your overall personal career plan.

I have received a study support grant previously; does this count as supported study leave?

No, a study support grant is not considered supported leave.

What is considered supported leave?

Supported leave includes any Ministry funded leave such as a study award, sabbatical, fellowship or prestigious award.

Preference is given to applicants who have not had study leave in the last five years.

Back to top

Proposed study

Is there an approved list of qualifications?

You can apply to study any qualification you choose. You will need to justify your choice of qualification in your study plan.

Which tertiary institutions are approved for study?

You can apply to study at any tertiary institution, whether on campus or via distance learning.

Can I study overseas?

Yes, you can apply to study at any tertiary institution you choose.

The qualification I am planning on studying is not on the NZQA framework?

Please make sure you provide as much information as possible.

How do I find out the level of the qualification I am studying?

You can find the level of the qualification on the New Zealand Qualifications Authority website, www.nzqa.govt.nz. Alternatively you can ask your tertiary institution.

Do I need to be enrolled when applying?

No, but please contact your proposed tertiary institution to find out key enrolment dates.
If you are awarded a study award you will be asked to provide confirmation of enrolment in February or March of the year you go on leave.

Back to top

How is the leave awarded?

How do I work out the number of weeks I will need for a study award?

The amount of leave awarded is based on the length of the course you study, up to a maximum of 40 school weeks (term breaks are not counted). The period of study leave is granted at the discretion of the selection panel.
For example:

  • If you plan to study 120 credits, you will be awarded 32 school weeks to complete your study.
  • If you plan to study 60 credits, you will be awarded 16 school weeks to complete your study.

What are school weeks?

School weeks are the weeks during term time. We fund relief costs for the school weeks plus any holiday pay the relief teacher is entitled to.

Can I apply to study part-time throughout the year?

Yes, you can, as study leave can be used flexibly throughout the year. It is important that your principal and board of trustees/employer understand that you plan to study part-time and how this will affect your teaching time.
An example of this could be if you are planning to study 60 credits, you would be awarded 16 school weeks to complete your study. You can take the 16 school weeks flexibly throughout the school year with agreement from your school.

Can I apply to study for one semester only?

Yes, you can, but it is important that your principal and board of trustees/employer know that you are planning on study for one semester as they as they will only receive relief funding for the time you are away.

Can I apply to complete my postgraduate qualification, and start work towards my masters?

Yes, you can apply to complete more than one qualification in the year. Please make sure you provide all the requested information for both/all qualifications in your study plan.

The study that I plan to complete takes two full years. If I am awarded a study award will it cover both years of study?

No, the study awards are only available for a maximum of one school year.

Can I change my course of study after submitting an application?

Yes, but not substantially. Please notify us of proposed changes in writing, and provide details of this and an explanation of the reason for this change as this will need to be approved.

Back to top

Study plan requirements

How should I present my application?

Please see section 6 of the application form. Present your study plan in the requested format. This makes it easier for the selection panel to assess study plans consistently.

Why do I need to complete all the information on my study plan?

Your study plan is a key part of your application, and you need to demonstrate to the selection panel that you have taken the time to carefully prepare and followed the format structure as outlined in section 6. Failure to do so may result in your application scoring lower.

Can I submit more than one study plan?

You can only submit one study plan.

What are the Ministry of Education’s strategic intentions for education?

You can find these in the Ministry of Education’s current Statement of Intent. You can find a copy on the Ministry of Education’s website www.education.govt.nz

What are equal opportunity factors?

The selection panel is to consider equal opportunity factors, which means thinking about any barriers that might have prevented an applicant from taking up opportunities.

What is considered ‘professional isolation’?

It is important that you outline any professional isolation as applications are judged based on the information you provide.
Examples of professional isolation include:

  • if you are the sole teacher of a subject area, e.g. the only reo Māori or chemistry teacher.
  • if you are the sole mentor of beginning teachers in your school
  • if you are a teacher in a small isolated school
  • if you cannot access professional development opportunities because of distance and/or costs
  • the socio-economic status of the school or community or specific requirements of the school.

Back to top

Contribution towards expenses

What are considered course fees?

Course fees are defined as the core compulsory tuition fees charged by the tertiary institution to you. This does not include student, building, administration or health fees or other personal benefits services.

How will my course fees be reimbursed?

If you receive a study award, you will receive a contribution of up to $2,000 towards course fees. This payment is made directly to you, and it is your responsibility to pay your course fees to your tertiary institution by the due date.

When will I receive my reimbursement?

If you receive a study award, you will be requested to provide a fees invoice and evidence of your bank account details. We will aim to make this payment directly into your bank account in March or April.

Back to top

ECE centre support

Who can support my application if I am an ECE centre manager?

Please ask your employing ECE centre owner or service provider to support your application. If you are the ECE centre owner/manager, please make sure this is clear on the application form.

What if I can’t provide confirmation of support from my ECE centre manager/service provider?

If you have not yet received support from the ECE centre manager/service provider you may still apply, but please send this in by Monday 9 September 2019. Please provide an explanation in the box provided on page 13 of the application form, as to why the support of the ECE centre manager/service provider is not included with your application.

Please note that support from your ECE centre manager/service provider is an eligibility factor and must be submitted by Monday 9 September 2019.

Back to top

Principal and board of trustees/employer support

Who can support my application if my principal is away?

The acting principal is the only person who can support your application on behalf of your principal. Please make sure it is clear that the signature is from the person acting in the role of the principal.

What can I provide as evidence that my principal supports my application?

The application form asks for a signature from your principal as support for your application.

We can accept one of the following as principal support:

  • A signed letter of support from your school principal.
  • An email sent directly from your school principal.

Principal support, in one of the formats outlined above, must be submitted by Monday 9 September 2019.

Please note that support from your principal is an eligibility factor.

Who has the authority to support my application on behalf of the board of trustees/employer chairperson?

The deputy chairperson or another trustee who has delegated authority in the absence of the chairperson or their deputy. Please make sure this is clear on the application form.

What can I provide as evidence that my board of trustees/employer supports my application?

We can accept one of the following as board of trustees/employer support:

  • A copy of relevant board of trustees/employer minutes confirming support for your application.
  • A signed letter of support from the board chairperson/employer.
  • An email sent directly from the board chairperson/employer.

Board of trustees/employer support, in one of the formats outlined above, must be submitted by Monday 9 September 2019.

Please note that support from your board of trustees/employer is an eligibility factor.

Who can sign my application form if the board of trustees has been disestablished?

Please ask the commissioner acting in place of the board of trustees to sign your application form to confirm support for your application. Please ensure it’s clear that the signature is that of the commissioner’s.

Who should sign to support my application if my school has a limited statutory manager employed?

If the limited statutory manager is acting in place of the board of trustees for employment matters, ask the limited statutory manager to sign your application form to confirm support for your application; otherwise the board chairperson should sign. Please ensure it’s clear that the signature is that of the limited statutory manager.

What if I can’t provide confirmation of board of trustees/employer and principal support when I submit my application?

If you have not yet received support from the the principal and/or board of trustees/employer, you may still apply, but please send this in by Monday 9 September 2019. 

Please note that support from the board of trustees/employer and principal is a eligibility factor, and must be submitted by Monday 9 September 2019.

I am a Resource Teacher: Learning and Behaviour (RTLB) and work in a number of schools. Which board of trustees/employer and principal should I ask to support my application?

RTLBs are employed by the cluster lead school’s board of trustees/employer. The schools where RTLBs are located, but not employed, are called host (or satellite) schools. Please ask the board of trustees/employer and principal from your lead school to support your application.

Back to top

Submitting my application

What happens if my application is late?

Late applications will not be considered. For your application to be considered, it must be submitted on or before Monday 2 September 2019.

How will I know that you have received my application?

You will receive an email to confirm that your application has arrived. Please contact us if you have not heard from us by Monday 9 September 2019.

What happens if my application is incomplete?

It’s important to ensure you’ve submitted all the required information. If your application is incomplete, or it is not in the correct format, the selection panel will not be able to fully assess it.

You must submit your application by Monday 2 September 2019, but you may submit additional information to support your application up to Monday 9 September 2019 (one week after the closing date). This must be submitted with a reference to your application no later than Monday 9 September 2019 otherwise your application cannot be assessed.

What will happen if my application is submitted after Monday 2 September 2019?

Your application will not be considered.

Back to top

 

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