FAQ: Opting in and out of the pay parity scheme

Pay parity opt-in scheme

Does opting-in mean a service has to offer the full terms and conditions of the Kindergarten Teachers, Senior Teachers and Head Teachers Collective Agreement (KTCA)?

The pay parity opt-in scheme requires payment of a minimum salary scale but does not require a service to offer all the terms and conditions of the KTCA (e.g. specified amount of leave or non-contact time). This salary scale is outlined in the ECE Funding Handbook, Chapter 3-B-2(external link). 

What does the opt-in arrangement mean for services that are already party to a collective agreement?

Services that opt-in to the pay parity scheme are still free to offer additional terms and conditions, or be party to collective agreements. However, they must pay at least the minimum salary steps detailed in the salary scale that they have opted-in to. 

Are relievers covered?

Certificated relievers are covered. The attestation requirement covers all employed certificated teachers, including permanent, fixed term or casual staff. Where the employment relationship is not directly between the service and teacher (e.g. if relievers are engaged through an agency), service providers should ensure there is an agreement in place that enables them to show they are, or have been, paid at the correct level. 

Can I opt out?

Services can update their pay parity opt-in status using their RS7 return, should their circumstances change. For queries about the opt-in process or funding, contact ece.funding@education.govt.nz 

Can I change my opt-in response once I have submitted my RS7 return?

Services who wish to update their opt-in response can resubmit their RS7 return. Resubmissions can be made for the current funding period through the service’s student management system (SMS).

Any changes to a service’s funding will be processed for the next available payment date. Services should contact ece.funding@education.govt.nz if they wish to submit an RS7 return after the electronic submission deadline.

What period does the attestation cover?

The attestation relates to the washup months of the funding period. For example, in June 2023 the RS7 Return will contain an attestation for the period February-May 2023. Both washup and advance portion will be paid according to this attestation (either base, parity or extended parity funding rates).

Funding Period

Attestation period


October - January


February – May


June – September

Can we only opt in at the next founding round, or can we opt in at any point?

Services can opt-in when attesting to Pay Parity in their RS7 at any funding round. Services need to ensure they pay teachers correctly for the period they have opted into. For example, if you attest to the pay parity opt-in scheme in the February RS7 return, you will need to ensure your teachers are correctly paid at the right level from October to January. For more detail, refer to the table below:

Funding Period  Attestation Period RS7 Open Date  RS7 Close Date  First Pay Date
March  October - January  1 February  30 April 1 March
July  February - May  1 June  31 August 1 July
November  June - September  1 October  31 December 1 November


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