Auditor-General's overview

Institutional arrangements for training, registering, and appraising teachers.

A significant objective of the education system is to have teachers who are well equipped with the necessary skills to teach in our schools. We all want effective teachers who can provide a safe learning environment and promote achievement for all New Zealanders – in short, we want high-quality teaching.

This paper describes how public entities, and people in certain roles, influence the quality of teachers through initial teacher training, teacher registration, and monitoring teachers' performance.

The paper is intended to help inform Parliament and the public at a time where there is significant interest in the quality of teachers. A Ministerial Inquiry and a Ministerial Review are looking at aspects of how teacher quality is managed. The review and inquiry might lead to changes to some of the arrangements that we describe in this paper.

At first, we set out to produce an evaluative report focusing on the performance of public entities involved in influencing teacher quality. As we worked, we learned more about the highly complex arrangements.

We reached the view that improving teacher quality within this system requires the system as a whole to work well. The significantly interdependent work of the public entities and other roles that support the quality of teachers collectively influence the quality of teachers.

We have deliberately produced a descriptive paper that we hope will help inform discussions about supporting the quality of teaching.

I thank the public entities mentioned in this paper – in particular, the New Zealand Teachers Council – for sharing information and their views with us.

Signature - LP

Lyn Provost
Controller and Auditor-General

1 June 2012

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