1. The New Zealand Teachers Council Te Pouherenga Kaiako o Aotearoa (the Council) is entrusted with the responsibility of providing professional leadership to teachers and others involved in schools and early childhood education, enhancing their professional status, and encouraging best teaching practice. It is also responsible for ensuring that teachers, and other people carrying out teaching duties, meet professional standards, so they may contribute to and promote a safe and high quality teaching and learning environment for students (Refer to section 139AA of the Education Act 1989).
2. The Council's view is that the best way to ensure high quality teaching and learning is to appoint fully qualified and registered teachers. Under the Education Act 1989, the Council can also authorise an unregistered person to teach on a temporary basis by issuing a Limited Authority to Teach (LAT) for a specific position, provided that the person has the necessary skills and experience.
3. In order to administer this authority consistently, with transparent criteria and processes, the Council in 2003 established a Policy on a Limited Authority to Teach. The policy has since been amended in July 2004 and in March 2006. In 2005, in response to issues being raised by the profession, the Council decided to review the policy again and consulted widely with the profession, both before and during the policy review.
4. The policy has been revised to take account of the practical issues facing schools and centres in appointing teachers in some particular circumstances, while protecting the interests of learners where a fully qualified and registered teacher cannot be obtained.
5. The purposes of this policy are to:
5.1. identify the rationale, the requirements and the processes by which the Council approves applications for a LAT.
5.2. provide public and professional confidence in the LAT approval process that it contributes to a quality learning environment and enhances the reputation of the teaching profession.
6. The Council is authorised to issue a LAT under section 130A of the Education Act 1989:
"Where any person has skills and experiences that are appropriate to advance the learning of a student or group of students in any particular institution, but who may not have a specific qualification normally associated with teaching, and provided that person meets the tests set out in section 130B of this Act, that person shall on application to the Teachers Council, be granted a limited authority to teach."
7. Other sections of the Act relating to the granting of a LAT are 130B - H.
8. When deciding whether to grant a LAT, the Council must consider whether the applicant is:
8.1. of good character; and
8.2. fit to be a teacher; and
8.3. likely to be a satisfactory teacher (Education Act, 1989 section 130B(2)).
9. In determining whether the applicant meets these criteria, the Council must take into account the following:
9.1. purpose of the LAT, as set out above in paragraph 6;
9.2. the views of the professional leader of the institution that has employed the applicant;
9.3. the applicant's relevant skills and experience; and
9.4. any other relevant matters.
10. LATs cannot be used to circumvent the purposes of the Act or the registration
requirements in the Act. For example, section 120A(1) of the Education Act 1989 states that:
"(1) No employer shall appoint to any teaching position-
(b) Any person whose authorisation has been cancelled, and who has not since-
(i) Been granted an authorisation again; or
(ii) Been registered as a teacher."
The Act also says, in Section 120A(2):
"No employer shall permanently appoint to any teaching position any person who does not hold a practising certificate."
11. LATs are only to be used on a temporary basis by schools and kindergartens .
12. The Code of Ethics for Registered Teachers Ngā Tikanga Matatika applies to both registered teachers and LAT holders (Education Act 1989, section 139AI(1)). As part of accepting any LAT position, the LAT holder needs to understand the ethical principles and commitments within the code, including the professional expectation to uphold the reputation of the teaching profession.
13. A LAT application is required only for a person who is carrying out a role defined as a teaching role.
14. A teaching role is defined by the Council as one where:
"a person... has prime responsibility for the planning, implementation, assessment, evaluation and reporting of a sequential programme with a student or group of students (over the period of the contract), within a particular school, kura or centre." (Policy on the Settings for Gaining Full Registration)
15. Other criteria for being eligible for a LAT are that the applicant:
15.1. meets the language proficiency requirements; and
15.2. is of good character (has a satisfactory police vet); and
15.3. is fit to be a teacher (as attested by the professional leader).
16. A person is NOT eligible to apply for a LAT if any of the following apply:
16.1. s/he is to fulfil a role not defined as a teaching role
16.2. the position is sole charge
16.3. s/he is a registered teacher or has approved teaching qualifications
16.4. s/he holds a practising certificate or is eligible to hold one
16.5. registration is not compulsory for that position.
17. An application for a LAT is the joint responsibility of the applicant and the professional leader of the learning centre. It is based on a fixed term employment offer for a specific
17.3. subject or teaching role, and
18. The responsibilities of the applicant are to ensure s/he:
18.1. has been offered a temporary teaching position for a fixed period of time
18.2. will meet the criteria for good character and fit to be a teacher
18.3. meets the Council's language proficiency requirements
18.4. has the minimum standard of education and qualifications relevant to the role
18.5. has the skills and experience necessary to enhance the quality of student learning
18.6. is familiar with the Teachers Council Code Of Ethics for Registered Teachers Ngā Tikanga Matatika.
19. The professional leader or employer has the responsibility to ensure that s/he has:
19.1. been unable to secure an appropriately qualified registered teacher for the teaching position, including on subsequent applications for a LAT for the same position;
19.2. offered the applicant a specific fixed term teaching position, compatible with her or his skills and experience;
19.3. explained to the applicant that she or he cannot be appointed to a permanent position as a LAT holder (refer to sections 120A and 120B of the Education Act);
19.4. documented the term of employment and the reasons for the fixed term in writing (this is a requirement of section 66 of the Employment Relations Act 2000);
19.5. given full and informed endorsement of the applicant as a person ‘likely to be a satisfactory teacher';
19.6. informed the applicant of the Code of Ethics Ngā Tikanga Matatika;
19.7. considered the eligibility and approvals criteria of this policy as guidance when endorsing the application;
19.8. has in place a performance management system that will provide the LAT holder with a clear job description, regular appraisals, access to appropriate professional development and supervision from a designated fully registered teacher with a current practising certificate.
20. The Council requires evidence from the applicant and the professional leader/ employer to support the application. This evidence is specified in the Application for a LAT (TC4) Completion Guide form.
21. LATs may be issued on the basis of the criteria and expectations set out in this policy and the Education Act.
22. LATs may be issued for one, two or three years and the Council will be guided by the following criteria:
22.1. Up to Three Year LATs may be issued for people who are:
o part time (up to 0.5) such as a language specialist; or
o guidance counsellors
22.2. Up to Two Year LATs may be issued for people employed in teaching positions in:
22.3. Up to One Year LATs may be issued for:
23. LAT applicants will need to meet the conditions of the policy on Language Proficiency Requirements for Those Teaching in Aotearoa New Zealand.
24. Applications made for a LAT to teach languages other than English or Māori, where the applicant is not required to teach other subjects in English or Māori, will be considered on a case by case basis.
25. A person who holds a LAT cannot be appointed to a permanent position as the Education Act 1989 requires that only those with a practising certificate are able to be permanently appointed.
26. An employer cannot appoint a person to a teaching position if that person has had their LAT cancelled, and has not since been granted a LAT again, or been registered as a teacher (section 120A(1)(b)) Education Act 1989.
27. A person holding a LAT is subject to the same mandatory reporting rules as apply to registered teachers.
28. A LAT is not transferable and can only be used within the school/centre for the position for which it was granted, except where the position involves an itinerating role. In such circumstances the person holding a LAT identifies a designated ‘home setting'. The professional leader from the home setting is responsible for the joint application and endorsement on behalf of the other participating settings. All the other settings at which the position applies are listed on the application and agreement signed by each of the appropriate professional leaders in accordance with this policy.
29. A person who has previously held a LAT may make a subsequent application. A person may also apply for the issue of a new LAT before the expiry of a current LAT.
30. Applications must be made using the TC4 form from the Council.
31. An administration fee will apply. The Council may set different fees for different circumstances, and may change those fees from time to time.
32. Any applicant who is not satisfied with a Council decision about his or her LAT application may appeal that decision to the District Court within 28 days (or any longer period that the Court allows) of receiving notice of the decision.
33. The Council's compliance register will provide an audit of this policy against all legal requirements.
34. The policy may be reviewed and consulted on as required by the Council. Any change to policy will be published in the Education Gazette and on the Council website.
35. This policy should be read in conjunction with policies on:
35.1. Good Character & Fit to be a Teacher (draft 2007)
35.2. Rules on Police Vetting
35.3. Language Proficiency Requirements for those Teaching in Aotearoa New Zealand
35.4. Requirements for registration policy (including Track 2 & 3 for those without an approved teaching qualification).
36. This policy applies from September 2007.
 The term ‘itinerating refers to those who provide instrument or dance and drama instruction who itinerate between different schools. It does not refer to Itinerant Teachers of Music (ITMs), who are registered teachers, often in permanent positions, to whom this policy has no relevance.
 Education Act 1989, section 120A(2).
 See Good Character & Fit to be a Teacher Policy (2006) and the Education Act 1989, sections 139AK, AL, AM, AN, AO, AP.
 Education Act 1989, section 130B(3).
 Please download current form & guidelines from the website or request directly from the Council.