Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Overseas teachers to be fast tracked to residency

Secondary teachers who move to New Zealand to take up teaching roles will be put on a fast track to residency to help address workforce shortages, Immigration and Education Minister, Erica Stanford, announced today.  

“Shortages in secondary teachers, especially those in specific regions and subject skills such as Science, Technology, and Mathematics, have been an ongoing challenge for the New Zealand education workforce,” said Ms Stanford.

“This Government is committed to turning around declining levels of achievement and ensuring that every child in New Zealand receives a world-class education.

“To attract skilled teachers New Zealand must be a highly competitive destination for overseas talent so that all schools have the best people with the right experience.”

To achieve this, the Government will move secondary teachers from the Green List Work to Residence pathway to the Straight to Residence pathway, the Minister confirmed.

“This change will provide increased certainty and a more streamlined, prioritised process, with eligible overseas secondary school teachers able to apply for residence from offshore – rather than needing to gain work experience in New Zealand first,” she said.

“Addressing projections of continued shortages of secondary teachers in the short-to-medium term are a key concern for this Government.

“The Ministry of Education is working to grow a sustainable domestic supply of teachers through attracting teachers back to teaching and retaining existing teachers as well as increasing the number of New Zealand trained teachers through Initial Teacher Education.  

“Overseas teachers are a valuable part of our education system; the majority bring more than five years’ experience and extra learning opportunities to our schools.

“Having secondary teachers on the straight to residence pathway supports the Government priority of attracting highly skilled migrants that add to our economy and delivery Better Public Services in education by reducing teacher shortages.” 

All other teacher roles will remain on the Work to Residence Pathway, as it is anticipated that at a nation-wide level there will be enough teachers to meet the needs of the primary sector, the Minister said.

They will also continue to have a residency pathway through the Skilled Migrant Category.  

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