Circular 2022/04 - Settlement of the Support Staff in Schools' Collective Agreement and the Kaiārahi i te Reo and Therapists' Collective Agreement and new Individual Employment Agreements
Date 21 June 2022 | Circular 2022/04 | Category Employment Relations
This circular is about the recent settlements of the Support Staff in Schools’ Collective Agreement 2022-2024 (SSSCA 2022-24) and the Kaiārahi i te Reo and Therapists’ Collective Agreement 2022-2024 (KRTCA 2022-24) - previously named the Kaiārahi i te Reo, Therapists', ATSSD and Special Education Assistants' Collective Agreement - and information on applicable Individual Employment Agreements.
This circular does not replace any other.
It is intended for Presiding Members of school boards and principals of all state and state-integrated primary, area and secondary schools.
For more information contact the New Zealand School Trustees Association about human resource issues generally on 0800 782 435. Email the Ministry of Education's Employment Relations Unit: firstname.lastname@example.org. All collective agreements for school staff can be found on the Ministry's website: www.education.govt.nz/collective-agreements/
The action needed is to:
- Note the details of these settlements, including the new rates of pay that are provided for employees working in positions covered by the new collective agreements.
- Offer the new individual employment agreement (IEA) to existing employees who are not NZEI members but are working in roles covered by these new agreements. This includes teacher aides, ATSSDs, special education assistants, librarians, science technicians, therapists, administration staff, and kaiārahi i te reo.
- Offer the new individual employment agreement (IEA) to new employees. Update the letter of offer of employment template that you are using for new employees, available from NZSTA.
- Develop a new policy and practices to provide disregarded sick leave for employees who have now become eligible for this when they are ill with COVID-19 (or another notifiable disease) and need to isolate.
- In some circumstances, update your approach to adjusting permanent staff members and teacher aide hours and to actioning salary progression for teacher aides and support staff.
- Review and understand how sick leave entitlements for kaiārahi i te reo and therapists have changed.
- Note that a PLD fund will be established for teacher aides and kaiārahi i te reo and further announcements will be made about how this fund can be accessed in Term 4, 2022.
On 2 June 2022, two collective agreements covering administration staff, teacher aides, kaiārahi i te reo, therapists, assistants to teachers of students with severe disabilities and special education assistants were settled.
On 16 June 2022 the agreements were ratified by members of the New Zealand Educational Institute Te Riu Roa (NZEI Te Riu Roa) and E tū.
The term of both agreements is from 20 June 2022 to 19 February 2024.
This circular provides a summary of the changes and new provisions agreed in these settlements. The full collective agreements can be downloaded from the Ministry of Education’s website: www.education.govt.nz/collective-agreements/ and printed copies will be available from the New Zealand Schools Trustees Association (NZSTA).
Key features of the settlements
The new pay rates for teacher aides, ATSSDs, special education assistants, librarians, science technicians and therapists effective 2 June 2022 are outlined in the tables below. Note that assistants to teachers of students with severe disabilities and special education assistants are now covered by the Support Staff in Schools’ Collective Agreement and their pay rates are included in Part 3A of that agreement.
From 2 June 2023 pay rates will increase by a further 1.5%. Also from that date (2 June 2023), steps 1 and 2 for teacher aides, librarians and science technicians have been merged, as have step 1 and 2 for therapists. This is shown in the pay rate tables below.
These rates will be paid by EPL to employees who are NZEI members with effect from 2 June 2022 and to employees on individual employment agreements from the date they accept the new conditions of employment.
Ongoing funding will be provided to schools and kura to cover the increased costs of the settled Support Staff in Schools’ and Kaiārahi i te Reo collective agreements. This funding will be paid as part of your operational grant instalments, with the first instalment scheduled for 1 October 2022.
Pay Equity rates for administration support staff and kaiārahi i te reo
Equitable pay rates for administration support staff and kaiārahi i te reo have been established through pay equity settlements which are currently out for consideration by affected staff.
These settlements were separate from the collective bargaining process.
As part of the settlement of the collective agreement administration staff and kaiārahi i te reo will also receive a 1.5% increase to their equitable pay rates from 2 June 2023.
Subject to the settlements being endorsed by covered employees, the Ministry will cover the cost of the settlements. Ongoing funding will be provided to schools and kura to cover the increased cost of both the administration support staff and kaiārahi i te reo settlements.
Pay scale progression for staff covered by the Support Staff in Schools' Collective Agreement (SSSCA 2022-24) and Kaiārahi i te Reo and Therapists' Collective Agreement 2022-2024 (KRTCA 2022-24)
- for all staff
Currently progression through steps within the minimum and maximum rates that apply to each Grade will occur on an employee’s anniversary date each year, unless the employer considers that the employee has failed to meet standards of performance as assessed by the employer against the job description or written requirements for the position. From 17 October 2022, the employer will be required to inform the employee of this in writing no later than two months prior to the progression due date.
- from Grade B to Grade C for teacher aides
From 17 October 2022, teacher aides who on their anniversary date have been on the maximum step of Work Matrix Grade B-C step 5 for at least 12 months, will progress to step 6, unless the employer considers the teacher aide’s role remains solely within Work Matrix Grade B. If that is the case, the employer will need to have informed the teacher aide of this decision in writing no later than two months prior to the progression becoming due, together with the reasons for that decision.
From 13 July 2022, the rate of the one-off Tiaki allowance for support staff who are not teacher aides and therapists will increase to align with the current rate payable for teacher aides to $4.95 per day (from $3.85 per day).
Disregarded Sick Leave (DSL)
Disregarded sick leave will be available to administration staff, teacher aides, kaiārahi i te reo, therapists, assistants to teachers of students with severe disabilities, and special education assistants who contract a notifiable infectious disease listed in Part 1 of Schedule 1 of the Health Act 1956(external link), and need to be excluded from school for a period determined by a Medical Officer of Health or is prevented from attending work by a relevant Public Health Order.
Staff covered by these agreements can apply to their employer for DSL if they are required to be absent because they have contracted a notifiable disease(external link) (such as COVID-19) and are required to isolate. It will not apply if they are absent to care for others or if they are required to isolate but are not sick themselves.
For employees who are NZEI members and therefore covered by these agreements, this new provision came into effect on 20 June 2022. DSL does not apply to sick leave taken prior to 20 June 2022.
Staff employed on an individual employment agreement (IEA) will be able to apply for DSL if they have signed the promulgated IEA which incorporates the provisions of these settlements (see the ‘Individual Employment Agreements’ section below for more detail). These employees are entitled to this provision from the date their updated IEA is signed by them and their employer. The provision does not apply to sick leave taken prior to the date their IEA is signed.
Outside the collective agreement, additional relief funding continues to be available to schools that need to back-fill essential non-teaching staff due to COVID-19 related absences, at least for the remainder of Term 2 and this will be further reviewed for on-going need.
Unlike the DSL process for teachers and principals, schools and kura will be responsible for approving support staff DSL applications and will need to establish a process for considering them under their own policies and procedures. Guidance on this new provision is available here(external link).
Variation of hours for permanent staff employed under the SSSCA 2022-24
From 17 October 2022
- when hours of work per week and per year are to be varied there will need to be a period of at least one month's consultation followed by one month's notice.
- for teacher aides, the employer's ability to reduce the hours of work without triggering the change provisions in their employment agreement will be restricted to a maximum of 20% in a 12 month period - currently this is 25%.
NZSTA will provide guidance on these matters prior to 17 October.
Sick Leave under Kaiārahi i te Reo and Therapists' Collective Agreement (KRTCA 2022-24)
From the beginning of the 2023 school year kaiārahi i te reo and therapists will move to a new annual entitlement system which is compliant with the Holidays Act 2003 as amended in 2021.
Entitlement for full-time and part-time kaiārahi and therapists will be based on their completed aggregate years and months of employment with any state or integrated school while working under the KRCA or the SSSCA.
From 28 January 2023, sick leave entitlement for all full-time and part-time staff will accumulate on the basis of the table below:
|Upon first appointment in a role covered by this Agreement||20 days||20 days|
|6 months service||10 days||30 days|
|12 months service||10 days||40 days|
|18 months service||10 days||50 days|
|24 months service||10 days||60 days|
|30 months service||10 days||70 days|
|Each subsequent 12 months of completed continuous service||10 days||+10 days|
Employees’ sick leave will continue to be granted under the current rules until 28 January 2023. On that date their current accumulated entitlement will transfer to the applicable entitlement as outlined in the table in Annex 1 of the KRTCA based on their sick leave service as at 27 January 2023. At that time their sick leave balance will be their transferred entitlement, as per the table, less the sick leave they have taken up to 28 January 2023.
Professional Learning and Development (PLD)
- for teacher aides and kaiārahi i te reo
A PLD fund of $2 million per year ($4 million in total) will be established over the 20-month term (building on the pilot teacher aide PLD fund established in 2020).
Eligibility criteria and implementation details for the new fund will be finalised by the Ministry and NZEI Te Riu Roa by late September 2022.
- for administration support staff
A joint working group (NZEI Te Riu Roa, Ministry and NZSTA) is being established to consider PLD provision for administration support staff. It will consider the current availability of professional learning and development within schools; gaps and/or constraints in the current provision by schools; what strategies are available that could address any identified gaps and/or constraints; how providers should be identified and communicated to schools and administrators.
The working group will report its findings and any recommendations no later than 90 days before the expiry of the SSSCA 2022-24.
- Domestic Leave
A clause which previously prevented domestic leave being claimed during or in connection with the birth of an employee's child has now been deleted.
- Special Leave
The Ministry, NZEI Te Riu Roa and NZSTA will develop joint guidance, led by NZSTA, on the use of Special Leave for terminally ill employees who have exhausted their sick leave entitlement. This guidance is intended to be published by the start of Term 4, 2022.
Individual Employment Agreements (IEAs)
Individual Employment Agreements (IEAs) which provide the terms and conditions of the collective agreement, with all the necessary modifications applicable to an individual employment agreement, are to be promulgated by the Secretary for Education on 21 June 2022, following the signing of the collective agreements:
Existing employees on IEAs will receive the new pay rates effective from the date they sign the new IEA, on or after 21 June 2022.
Any letters of offer of employment for new staff will need to be updated to reference the newly agreed terms and conditions.
Mark Williamson, Senior Manager Employment Relations and Pay Equity, Te Puna Ohumahi Mātauranga | Education Workforce
Ministry of Education, PO Box 1666, Wellington 6140, New Zealand, Phone 04-463 8000
Pay rates for teacher aides, special education assistants and ATSSDs (SSSCA clause 3A.4.3)
|Grade & Step||Current rate||Rates effective
2 June 2022
|Year 2 Grade & Step||Rates effective
2 June 2023
|Total % increase|
|A2||$22.30||$23.21||4.1%||A1||$23.56||7.8% or 5.7%|
|B-C 1||$23.71||$24.62||3.8%||B-C 1||$24.99||5.4%|
|B-C 2||$24.46||$25.37||3.7%||B-C 2||$25.75||5.3%|
|B-C 3||$25.22||$26.13||3.6%||B-C 3||$26.52||5.2%|
|B-C 4||$25.97||$26.88||3.5%||B-C 4||$27.28||5.0%|
|B-C 5||$26.72||$27.63||3.4%||B-C 5||$28.04||4.9%|
|B-C 6||$27.34||$28.25||3.3%||B-C 6||$28.67||4.9%|
|B-C 7||$28.09||$29.00||3.2%||B-C 7||$29.44||4.8%|
|B-C 8||$28.84||$29.75||3.2%||B-C 8||$30.20||4.7%|
|B-C 9||$29.59||$30.50||3.1%||B-C 9||$30.96||4.6%|
|B-C 10||$30.34||$31.25||3.0%||B-C 10||$31.72||4.5%|
Pay rates for Librarians and Science Technicians (SSSCA clause 3.2.2)
|Step||Current Rate||Rates effective
2 June 2022
|Year 2 Step||Rates effective
2 June 2023
|Total % increase|
|2||$21.95||$22.92||4.4%||1||$23.26||6.7% or 6.0%|
|Range of Rates|
Pay rates for Therapists (KRTCA clause 3.2.2)
|Step||Current rate||Rates effective
2 June 2022
|Year 2 step||Rates effective
2 June 2023
|Total % increase|
|2||$54,484||$56,484||3.7%||1||$57,331||11.0% or 5.2%|
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