Get involved in 'The New Zealand Curriculum' refresh

Kia ora, Kia Orana, Mālō e lelei, Talofa lava, Mālō nī, Fakaalofa lahi atu, 안녕하세요, 大家好, नमस्त and warm greetings.

In Aotearoa New Zealand, let’s have a future where every child experiences success in their learning.

Over the next five years, we’re refreshing 'The New Zealand Curriculum'. It’s vital that all ākonga experience a sense of wellbeing and belonging in their schooling. This refresh will support teachers to design curriculum that fits the uniqueness of every learner - so that every child’s progress and achievement is responded to and celebrated.

The refreshed national curriculum will provide a greater sense of what progress looks like, and the learning that matters. We will all have clarity about the learning that ākonga should experience across the curriculum – what is important to understand, know, and do. This clarity will strengthen partnerships between teachers, kaiako, and leaders to work with ākonga, their family and whānau, and the wider community including hapū and iwi to develop rich and relevant local curriculum.

We are intent on empowering teachers and leaders to ensure every young person leaves school with the skills, capabilities, and knowledge they need to fulfil their potential.

The Kōrero Matauranga | Education Conversation gave us a detailed picture of the inequities and barriers faced by ākonga, their families and whānau. This, alongside the recommendations from the Curriculum, Progress and Achievement Ministerial Advisory Group, provided us with clear direction from you about what works, and the changes needed in the areas of curriculum, teaching and assessment.

We want to make sure that the needs of all ākonga are considered in this refresh, and that we engage with your collective wisdom, knowledge, and expertise on these changes. Check out the indicative timeline for opportunities to get involved!

It’s time to make a shift. Be part of the change!

We want the best for all ākonga, and future generations.

To create this future, the goals for 'The New Zealand Curriculum' refresh and support for teaching and learning are to:

  1. Honour our mutual obligations to and through Te Tiriti o Waitangi
  2. Create curriculum that is inclusive so that all ākonga see themselves, and succeed in their learning
  3. Make sure 'The New Zealand Curriculum' is clear about the learning that matters
  4. Make sure 'The New Zealand Curriculum' is easy to use for teachers.

Snapshot of what's changing(external link)

What is National Curriculum?

In the context of school settings across Aotearoa, 'The New Zealand Curriculum' sets out the expectations and requirements for teaching and learning. It contains the learning that all ākonga should experience in New Zealand schools.

What is Local Curriculum?

Local Curriculum is how to interpret and present 'The New Zealand Curriculum' to ākonga in schools, making it relevant to their current and future lives – their strengths, aspirations and needs.

School leadership work out how to shape their local curriculum by collaborating with ākonga, parents, whānau, hapū, iwi and their wider community.

The purpose of Local Curriculum is to be explicit and intentional in delivering teaching and learning to meet the needs of ākonga and their families and whānau.

By working together, we can all create the necessary shifts needed so that all ākonga succeed in their learning”

Pauline Cleaver, Associate Deputy Secretary, Curriculum, Pathways & Progress | Te Poutāhū (Curriculum Centre)

Refreshing 'The New Zealand Curriculum'

Whakapapa and indicative timeline

Significant change to the national curriculum for schooling is needed to make it equitable and fit for purpose now and in the future. The crucial areas needing the greatest change were being clear about the important learning that all akonga need, and honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Throughout the refresh we are also seeking views from akonga, parents and whanau, and the wider community including hapu and iwi as well as business and employers.

Take a look at the indicative timeline below for opportunities to get involved. 

Make sure you check out Who we’re working with where we will be posting updates, videos, and more information about the groups of people that we are working with and more about the changes.


As areas are refreshed and curriculum supports are introduced, they enter a cycle of continuous improvement.

Future opportunities to get involved in testing will highlighted throughout the timeline.


  • Kōrero Mātauranga | Education set out to hear the ideas and opinions from all New Zealanders to improve the education system

“It’s about your vision, your ideas to enable change now that will serve us in the future”  Hon Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister 

2018 to midway through 2019

  • Curriculum, Progress and Achievement Ministerial Advisory Group and Reference Group investigate

June 2019

  • Tomorrow’s Schools Review Independent taskforce report 

“It provides a detailed picture of the very serious equity and performance challenges we face and explains why and how we need to change”

Bali Haque, Chair, Tomorrow’s School’s Independent taskforce 

September 2019

  • Prime Minister announces Aotearoa New Zealand’s histories (ANZH) will be available to teach in all schools and kura from 2022
  • Minister announces intention to refresh the national curriculum 

August 2020 (term 3 onwards)

  • New Professional Learning and Development priorities now available 

2021 to 2024 (opportunity to get involved in testing)

  • Records of Learning (RoL) design and test progressively underway
  • First release planned for 2024 

February 2021

  • Minister Tinetti announces national curriculum refresh

February to May 2021

  • Draft new ANZH curriculum content out for public consultation 2022

March 2021

  • Draft Literacy and Mathematics strategies underway

May 2021

  • Curriculum leads introduced

August 2020 (term 3 onwards)

  • New Professional Learning and Development priorities now available

October 2021 (opportunity to get involved in testing)

  • New online curriculum hub design underway, with progressive releases


  • All other parts of 'The New Zealand Curriculum' (NZC) refreshed and tested e.g., vision, purpose, and principles etc.
  • Support to schools on the ‘Understand, Know, Do’ (UKD) framing and progression model

2022 (term 2 onwards)

  • New Aotearoa New Zealand’s histories curriculum content available

February to April 2022 (opportunity to get involved in testing)

  • NZC vision testing (phase 1)
  • Learning area testing: Social Sciences

Mid – 2022

  • Refreshed Social Sciences learning area available

2022 to 2023 (opportunity to get involved in testing)

  • Learning area testing: Mathematics and Statistics, and English 

2023 to 2024 (opportunity to get involved in testing)

  • Refreshed learning areas available that were tested in 2022
  • Learning area testing: Technology, The Arts, and Science 

2024 to 2025

  • Refreshed learning areas available that were tested in 2023
  • Learning area testing: Learning Languages, Health and Physical Education 


  • All schools using the refreshed New Zealand Curriculum by the end of 2025
  • Implementation and support continues

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