Returning to Teaching in Aotearoa New Zealand Practising Certificate

The Returning to Teaching in Aotearoa New Zealand Practising Certificate (RTTANZ) provides a pathway back into teaching for teachers who haven't taught in New Zealand in the last five years. It also addresses the legal requirement for two years' uninterrupted teaching the past five years.

This type of practising certificate does not get renewed. The Council expects that once you've gained satisfactory teaching experience and have met all the other requirements for practising certificate issue or renewal, you will seek to move to the appropriate practising certificate.

First, please check the status of your teacher registration - you may be required to reapply for registration. 

When you apply for a practising certificate with the Council, a registration officer will review your application to confirm your teaching experience in the last five years. If you have had none  they will identify what kind of refresh process you need to undertake and recommend you are issued with RTTANZ.

When you are ready to move from a RTTANZ practising certificate, please contact the Council to confirm which practising certificate you should apply for.

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Unregistered teachers who have never held a practising certificate

If you are not registered as a teacher and have never held a practising certificate, you will need to:

Once you’ve completed TER, you will be issued with a Tōmua/Provisional practising certificate.

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Which refresh process is right for you

You can check which refresh process might be right for you below, however, when you submit your application for a practising certificate, we will advise you if you are required to complete one of the refresh options. You may be eligible to teach while you complete the refresh process.  

Teacher Education Refresh (TER) programme 

You are likely to be required to complete a TER programme if you: 

  • are applying for your first practising certificate and you graduated from your Initial Teacher Education programme more than five years ago 
  • held a Provisional Practising Certificate and have not taught in the last five years 
  • have already held two Provisional Practising Certificates and want to apply for a third 
  • are an overseas teacher and your education qualification was completed more than five years ago and you have not taught in the last five years.  

You may also be required to undertake a TER programme if you have held Full Practising Certificate or Subject to Confirmation but not taught for a length of time. 

Find out more details about TER programmes. 

Return to Practice Plan (RTPP) 

You are likely to be required to complete a RTPP if you: 

  • Previously held a Full or Subject to Confirmation Practising Certificate, and you have not completed any teaching in the last five years. 

Find out more details about RTPP programmes. 

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In this section

  • Teacher Education Refresh

    TER programmes bring teachers up to date with their knowledge and experience of current educational practices.

  • Return to Practice Plan

    This refresh process will help you to develop a plan of targeted professional development to refresh your teaching practice.