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Apply for an Extension to Teach

An extension enables a professional leader to employ someone in a teaching position while their practising certificate or authorisation is being processed.

 In New Zealand by law you can continue to be employed in any teaching position without a practising certificate or LAT for up to 20 half-days in a year.

There are some circumstances where you can request an extension from the Council to teach beyond the 20 half-days. These requests must be endorsed by your employer, attesting that you will be teaching beyond the 20 half-days because:

  • You have applied to the Council for another practising certificate or LAT but there are administrative delays in the processing of your application which means your current practising certificate or LAT expires before a new one is issued; or
  • You are waiting for the outcome of your practising certificate application that is being processed by the Council.

We will not consider applications for extensions to teach if you are under advice and guidance, or if you’re the subject of a mandatory report or complaint that is being considering or investigated by the Council.

We will not pre-empt the outcome of these processes. If there are cases where child safety or the reputation of the teaching profession is at risk, the Council will seek an undertaking for you not to teach. For more information about how conduct or competence concerns are addressed please go to conduct and competence of the website.

Who could be eligible for an extension?

Extensions are only available to those who have an application pending. Please read the list below of common situations regarding when to apply for an Extension to Teach.

Extension to Teach whilst completing TER or TER Review

When you submit your application for a practising certificate, you will be advised if you are required to complete a refresh programme. You may be eligible for an extension to teach to allow you to continue teaching while you complete the refresh programme or while any review of the requirement to do TER is underway.

Extension to Teach for Relief Teachers

If you are a relief teacher, you may be eligible for an extension. Relief teachers only need to have one school’s professional leader approve an extension. One extension will cover you for teaching across several schools.

Extension to Teach for Early Childhood Education (ECE) sector

Whilst an extension can be issued to any teacher who meets the requirements, extensions are only recognised in schools where holding a practising certificate is compulsory. It is not compulsory to hold a practising certificate to work in early childhood settings.

The Ministry of Education requires early childhood settings to employ teachers with a current practising certificate in specific roles in ECE centres (“person responsible) and for the funding purposes. The Ministry of Education sets the requirements for the current funding and employment in the ECE sector and holding a current practising certificate is only part of the requirements. For further information please contact the Ministry of Education.

Criteria for providing an Extension to Teach

An extension can only be granted if:

  • An application is received
  • Your professional leader supports your extension request
  • The Council are assured you meet the criteria for doing so and there are no concerns.

If I have applied using a paper application, how do I apply for an extension?

If you have applied for your practising certificate using a paper application (for example if you are not attached to a school or learning centre and so couldn’t apply for an ESL), you will need to ask your Principal to apply for an extension through the Online Extension Request form.