Te Kahu Tōī, Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS)

An overview of Te Kahu Tōī, Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS) and the process that must be followed in order to apply.

Level of compliance Main audience Other


  • Boards 
  • Principals and Tumuaki
  • Teachers and Kaiako
  • Parents, Caregivers and Whānau
  • Administrators

Wraparound differs from many other service delivery strategies, in that it provides a comprehensive, holistic, youth and family/whānau driven way of responding when children or youth experience significant challenges in their lives. Participation in the scheme is optional. Applications are made by Ministry of Education Learning Support staff, RTLB and day specialist schools or fund-holder schools.


Wraparound puts the child/youth and their family/whānau at the centre. With support from a team of professionals (including a Ministry psychologist and an Intensive Wraparound Facilitator) and natural supports, the family/whānau’s ideas and perspectives about what they need and what will be helpful drive all the work in wraparound.

Who Te Kahu Tōī, IWS is for

Te Kahu Tōī, Intensive Wraparound Services (IWS) is a support programme for young people aged 5-14 years who:

  • have behaviour, social and/or learning needs that are highly complex and challenging (and may have associated intellectual difficulty), and
  • require support at school, at home and in the community.

Te Kahu Tōī provides a bespoke comprehensive, holistic, youth and family/whānau driven way of responding when children or youth experience significant challenges in their lives.

During the Wraparound process, a team of people who are relevant to the life of the child or youth collaboratively develop an individualised plan of care.

How Te Kahu Tōī, IWS works

The young person and their family/whānau members work with an Intensive Wraparound (IW) Facilitator and Psychologist to build their wraparound team, which can include the whānau’s friends and people from the wider community, as well as providers of services and supports.

The whānau and young person take the lead in deciding team vision and goals, and in developing creative and individualised services and supports that will help them achieve the goals and vision. Team members’ work together to put the plan into action, monitor how well it is working, collect outcome data and change the plan as needed.

Te Kahu Tōī, Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS) aims to help the young person develop the skills to:

  • learn new, positive ways of behaving
  • stay at their local school, or return there after time at a residential special school
  • behave in a positive and social way
  • enjoy a successful life at school and home.

Goals of Te Kahu Tōī, IWS

  • Young people with the greatest need have access to the people and processes in which decisions are made as well as access to needed resources and services.
  • Whānau’s voices are heard and they are full decision makers in charge of their own lives.
  • The whānau has ownership of the planning process in partnership with the team and is in agreement and committed to carry out the plan.

How to get access to the Te Kahu Tōī, IWS

To get access to the Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS), seek a referral from one of these:

  • a member of the Ministry’s Learning Support staff
  • a Resource Teacher Learning and Behaviour (RTLB)
  • the student’s Ongoing Resourcing Scheme (ORS) fund-holding school (including Day Special Schools).

The referrer discusses the referral with the school, parents, whānau or caregivers before going ahead.

Application process

The person making the referral completes the application form. They gather information about the young person, their history, background and needs. The young person, parents/caregivers and whānau and other people involved with them all have the opportunity to contribute to the application.

Information must include how local learning support services available to the child/young person and their whānau have been fully utilised and are unable to meet their needs.

The referral is submitted to the local Intensive Services Prioritisation Panel made up of:

  • a school principal
  • a Learning Support manager
  • an RTLB Cluster Manager
  • an IWS service manager

The panels usually meet at least once per school term. Your referee can discuss the resources available to provide help in the meantime such as the Interim Resource Fund.

Terms of Reference guide panel processes [PDF, 297 KB]

Young people who are referred and prioritised for IWS have significant behaviour, social or learning needs that are highly complex and challenging (may have associated intellectual difficulty) requiring support at school, at home and in the community.

How to apply

To apply online, please download and use the following forms:

Note: Do not attach any other documents.

Once it is complete, submit your application to your local Intensive Services Panel. You can email the Microsoft Word form along with the three attachments.

When emailing confidential Microsoft Word documents please make sure you have consent to make this application and consent to share it with the Ministry Intensive Services Panel. Before you send it, check you are sending it to the correct email address.

Panels set and circulate due dates for applications to be received each term. To check due dates call your local Ministry office.

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