Education Act update

Whakahounga Ture Mātauranga


A range of changes to the Education Act 1989 takes effect starting from 19 May 2017.

Why was it changed?

The Education Act, like any legislation, was in need of review due to the changing educational environment we operate in. The roles and responsibilities of boards of trustees were spread throughout the Act. The changes have brought most of the requirements of the governance powers and functions of boards together. The revised Act has statements defining the board as the governing body of the school.

We have created an overview document.

We have created a key update information for boards overview document.

Enduring objectives for the education system

National Education and Learning Priorities (NELP)

Update December 2018

Public consultation on a draft NELP is now expected in mid-2019. For more information go to the Ministry of Education's website.

Clarifying boards of trustees' roles and responsibilities

From 19 May 2017

For more information, read Education Act 1989, schedule 6.

Improving boards' planning and reporting

The requirement that the annual report must be made available on the internet site maintained by or on behalf of the board. This change came into effect on 19 May 2017.

Update December 2018

Key planning and reporting changes are due to come into effect on 1 January 2020. They will include new regulations.

Banning seclusion and creating a legal framework for physical restraint

From 19 May 2017

Update December 2018

From 15 August 2017 Education (Physical Restraint) Rules apply.
August 2017 Guidelines introduced.

Attending a board meeting about suspension

From 31 December 2019

Improving the management of enrolment schemes

Enabling Communities of Learning | Kāhui Ako to work together more collaboratively

Enabling schools to introduce cohort entry

Compulsory attendance at school for under sixes

Combining school boards of trustees

From 19 May 2017.

Alternative constitution when combining boards

Creating a more graduated range of interventions

Clarity to Part 12 and the establishment, closing and merger of schools

Updating the legislative framework for state integrated schools

From 19 May 2017

For more information, read Education Act 1989, Part 33.

Streamlining process for establishing designated character schools

From 19 May 2017.

Update December 2018

From 24 October 2018, more streamlining of processes introduced.

Formalising the arrangements for off site locations

Establishing a regulatory framework for Communities of Online Learning

The new regime is scheduled to come into force from January 2020. 

Update December 2018

A bill is currently before Parliament which if passed, will repeal these provisions.

Establishing a Competence Authority for teachers

From 19 May 2017.

Update December 2018

From 29 September 2018, the Education Council was renamed to the Teaching Council of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Creating a refocused careers service within the Tertiary Education Commission

From 1 July 2017

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