Te Waka Whakarei Career Changer Scholarship

The second application round of the 2020 TeachNZ Scholarship Programme has recently closed. 

You will be able to apply for the third and final time from 3rd April!

The Te Waka Whakarei Career Changer scholarship supports you to change your career and follow your passion for te reo Māori.

The scholarship is designed to assist you on your pathway to teaching

  • In a Māori Medium immersion early learning centre, primary school or kura
  • In a Māori Medium immersion secondary school or wharekura
  • At a secondary school; teaching te reo Māori

It provides financial assistance so the loss of income you experience while studying is not a barrier to obtaining a teaching qualification.

There are options for graduates and undergraduates.

If you are proficient in te reo and have a wealth of life experience this could be the scholarship for you.

As a Te Waka Whakarei Career Changer Scholar you gain access to:

  • Course fees to study an approved teaching qualification
  • An allowance of $30,000 per year, over the period of your study (limited to three years)

To be eligible, you are required to:

  • Be changing your career or profession to teaching


  • Be an unqualified teacher currently working in a centre or school (such as a Teacher Aide) have a Limited Authority to Teach or a kaiārahi I te reo


  • Be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident
  • Be enrolled on, have applied for, or be intending on enrol on an approved qualification
  • Have proficiency in te reo Māori that meets the requirements of your tertiary provider
  • Have support from your iwi and/or Māori leaders in your community


Applicants who desire to teach in wharekura:

  • have a degree or graduate diploma with specialist secondary subject content at the 300 level in that qualification, for teaching to a senior level

Applicants who desire to teach te reo in a secondary setting:

  • have a degree or graduate diploma with at least one 300-level paper in Māori studies, development, language, culture or society.

To find out more about approved teaching qualifications click here.

Fees and allowance payments are only paid upon meeting the requirements of a scholarship. To receive allowance payments you  are required to be a full-time student (or have ‘limited full-time status’ from StudyLink) and pass all of your academic year.

Further terms and conditions apply.


You can apply online, or by post.

The third and final application round opens 3rd April 2020.

The notification date for the second application round is 12 March 2020.

Round 2 onwards dates4 Please be aware, that due to the limited availability of the Te Waka Whakarei Career Changer Scholarship (90) they may all be allocated before the third round.

We hold cultural competencies, passion and life experience in the same regard as your academic history. Our application form is designed to let you show this off!

You can apply for multiple scholarships, but can only be granted one. Part-time options are available.

For more information and tips on applying click here.

Need more help?

Remember, we're here to help. If you have any questions, you can email us on teachnz.admin@education.govt.nz or call us during business hours on 0800 165 225.

You can also learn more about our scholarships by watching the videos and exploring the links on the left of this page.

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