Principal performance management 

Whakahaere whakatutukinga tumuaki


What do boards have to do for principal performance agreements and reviews?

The principal collective agreements require that ‘the board shall put in place an annual performance agreement and carry out a review (appraisal) of the principal every year’.

The performance agreement must be developed in consultation with the principal and needs to include:

  • performance and learning objectives, aligned with the board’s strategic and annual plan and linked to the framework of Standards for the Teaching Profession, principal professional standards and career structure criteria
  • summary of outcome as to whether the above objectives, criteria and standards have been met

NZSTA, in collaboration with the Education Council, and in consultation with principal professional groups, has developed an example performance agreement template which includes all the required elements.

The performance agreement will then form the basis for the performance review which boards are required to conduct every year. This review will evaluate how the principal is performing in their job according to objectives, standards, and criteria listed in the performance agreement. More information about the process is available in the resources below.

The Education Council requires that all principals, in order to renew their practising certificate, need to be annually appraised using the 6 Standards for the Teaching Profession. Requirements for Principals’ and Tumuaki Performance Review/Appraisal contains more detail on how the practising certificate renewal is linked to performance review.

Who is involved?

The board is responsible for putting in place the agreement and conducting the review. It may delegate aspects of this task to a committee or individual.

The principal is a collaborative partner and must be consulted throughout the development of the agreement and during the review process and final report.

An external consultant may be engaged by the board to assist the board with the performance review.

More resources for performance agreements and reviews

If you need further information, please contact the Employment Advisory & Support Centre on 0800 782 435 (Option 2). 

Performance management materials include:

Register for NZSTA's upcoming courses on "principal performance management" and "employer role." 

NZSTA's booklets

Guidelines for boards of trustees: Primary Principals Performance Review and Managing Principal Appraisal

Good practice framework for principal appraisal (performance management).

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