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Scholarships for early childhood teacher training

12 May 2005

Budget 2005

More scholarships for early childhood teacher training

An additional 200 TeachNZ scholarships for prospective early childhood education teachers are now available for July 2005 enrolments in teacher education, Education Minister Trevor Mallard announced today.

“This is on top of the 700 scholarships already going to early childhood education student teachers who are beginning their study this year. The scholarships cover fees and could be worth up to $20,000 over the full duration of study. People are bonded to teach in New Zealand for the same amount of time as they received the scholarship for. Until this year only 175 scholarships were available in this area,” Trevor Mallard said.

“A key focus for this government is to support more and better qualified teachers into early childhood education, so that more New Zealand children can access top quality, affordable early childhood education.

“I encourage anyone who wants to enrol in early childhood teacher education in July this year to contact TeachNZ now for an information pack. Teaching in early childhood is an exciting and innovative field, with good career prospects.

“Recent improvements in pay and conditions for early childhood education teachers, and increased awareness of the importance of quality early childhood experiences for children’s learning, makes early childhood teaching an attractive career choice.

“These TeachNZ scholarships help student teachers achieve an early childhood education qualification to enable them to become registered early childhood education teachers. Demand is increasing for qualified teachers, as new qualification requirements for early childhood education services kick in over the next few years.

“The scholarships are targeted at people on low incomes who want to start studying to be an early childhood education teacher and also target people enrolling in early childhood education teacher education qualifications with a Maori or Pasifika focus - as this is where there is a shortage of teachers.

“The extra scholarships will be funded out of Budget 2005 through an extra $4.1 million over four years (of which $3.4 million is new spending). It brings our total commitment to these scholarships over the next four years to $43.7 million.

“I urge those who have been advised they have been awarded a scholarship in 2005 and who have yet to complete their paperwork to do so as soon as possible so their scholarship payments can be processed.

“A further round of scholarships will also be available for those wanting to begin study in 2006. TeachNZ will accept applications for the 2006 scholarship round later in 2005.

A list of early childhood education teacher supply initiatives

Tackling Early Childhood Teacher Supply: Initiatives in Early Childhood Education

New Funding System: From 1 April 2005 new funding has been specifically earmarked to deliver quality in teacher-led early childhood education and care services – particularly to meet the cost of lifting teacher qualifications. Any teacher-led service that employs more registered teachers will receive a higher rate of funding, which should enable services to pay teachers at higher rates. In addition, a support grant is available to provide additional funding for services to encourage and support their permanently employed provisionally registered teachers to achieve full registration as an ECE teacher.

TeachNZ Scholarships A new scholarship scheme was announced in September 2004. Over the next four years $43.7 million for scholarships will be available. Scholarships are available to two groups of potential teachers: people from low income backgrounds, based on Community Services Card thresholds, and people who plan to enrol in specific kaupapa Maori or Pasifika-focused programmes of teacher education. Some students are eligible for as much as $20,000 in support. Recipients will be bonded to teach in New Zealand ECE services for the same amount of time as they received the scholarship for.

Current Community Services Card Income Threshold

Family Size Income Threshold
Single - sharing accommodation $19,741
Single - living alone $20,913
2 person family (can be a couple or 1 adult and 1 child) $31,225
3 person family $36,371
4 person family $41,517
5 person family $46,665
6 person family $51,813
For families of 7 or more, the income limits increase by $4,840 for each additional person.

National Relocation Grants: grants worth up to $3,000 will be made available to qualified early childhood teachers who move from specific areas of NZ to one of the following hard to staff areas: Auckland, Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty.

International Relocation Grants: grants worth up to $5,000 will be made available to qualified early childhood teachers currently living overseas who are willing to move back to NZ and take up an early childhood teaching position in one of the following hard to staff areas: Auckland, Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty.

Returning to Teaching Allowances: grants worth $2,000 will be made available to qualified early childhood teachers currently out of the teaching workforce to return to ECE teaching in one of the following hard to staff areas: Auckland, Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty.

Relief Teacher Pool: the Ministry of Education will manage a relief teacher pool for ECE services on provisional licences in Auckland where there is currently a high need for ECE teachers.

Beginning Teacher Resource: a resource will be produced to provide information about teacher registration for early childhood education services and teachers.

Recruitment Brokers: the Ministry of Education will provide recruitment broker services nationally from 2005, to recruit people to enrol in programmes of teacher education.

Incentive Grants: the pool of incentive grants, which are payments made to early childhood services to help them support staff who are studying, has been expanded to provide more grants nationally and in particular a demand driven pool of grants for Auckland.

Primary Study Grants: a demand driven pool of study grants (each worth $3000) will be made available for primary qualified teachers to transition to the early childhood sector, and for those who are currently studying towards a primary teaching qualification and want to change to an early childhood teacher education programme.

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL): This initiative seeks to accelerate the process of converting qualifications and prior learning to those qualifications now recognised in the early childhood sector. Free RPL is available from specific teacher education providers. Approximately 1500 free assessments have been undertaken to date.

Distance Learning: to assist students and early childhood services in more remotely located areas to access teacher education. An extra 139 student places have been provided under the scheme and a further 50 will be provided during 2005.

Promotional Campaigns: to promote teaching opportunities within the ECE sector. A general campaign is managed by TeachNZ. In addition, campaigns promoting ECE teacher education specifically to Maori and Pasifika peoples have also been developed.

People enrolled in teacher education: In July 2004 4,708 people were enrolled in ECE teacher education. In 2003, 1000 people graduated from ECE teacher education. 2004 graduate data will be available later this year.

Registration requirements to lift quality of education

This year all teacher-led early childhood education services must have present at all times, at least one registered and qualified teacher designated as a 'person responsible'. Provisional licences may be issued to services that are having difficulty in meeting the qualification requirements for persons responsible but only under certain circumstances. Please refer to criteria published in the Provisional Licence Decision Making Framework available on the Ministry’s web site.

By 2012, all regulated staff in teacher-led services must be registered, although an exemption to the requirement allows services to meet the target of registration by having up to 30 per cent of their teachers enrolled in approved teacher education programmes.

(Updated April 2005)


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