G3+ teacher salary qualification; trained and untrained pay scales

New Zealand Post Primary Teachers' Association / Te Wehengarua (PPTA) explanation of the trained and untrained pay scales; "˜registered' means "˜trained'; and clarification of G3+ salary qualification.

Trained and untrained salary scales "“ from 13 April 2011

The March 2011 settlement of the Secondary Teachers' Collective Agreement (STCA) introduced separate trained and untrained pay scales from 13 April 2011, however this produced some inequalities for some teachers.  A variation of the STCA was agreed in September 2011 to clarify that all teachers who are registered by the NZ Teachers Council (NZTC) are paid on the trained scale.  This includes those who are provisionally registered and those whose registration is subject to confirmation.

Those with Limited Authority to Teach (LATs) will be paid on the untrained scale.

Registered means trained for the trained pay scale

The agreed September 2011 variation states that registration is the measure for meeting the teacher education requirement of being trained and qualified to teach in NZ.  This replaces the earlier wording of the STCA of having to "hold a recognized teacher education qualification".   This is because the NZTC, through its authority to grant registration, certifies that all teachers who are registered have engaged in learning comparable to that of a Level 7 graduate diploma in secondary teacher education.

G3+ salary qualification level for secondary teachers

Download pdf Download variation to the STCA

This variation clarifies that for the G3+ qualification group, teacher education is recognized by registration so includes those who may not they have a particular teacher education qualification.  The requirement to have a Level 7 subject/specialist qualification of which at least 72 credits are at Level 7 ie graduate level study remains unchanged.  In NZ this includes three year bachelor degrees, one year 120 credit L7 diplomas and conjoint qualifications.  For overseas teachers a statement from the NZ Qualifications Authority that verifies comparability of either a qualification or (and this is new) evidence of sufficient graduate study in a subject/specialist area.

Specialist qualifications can include management qualifications, special education qualifications, ESOL qualifications, guidance counselling qualifications, etc.

Qualification groups below G3+

From 13 April 2011, the variation states that registered teachers without a level 7 or higher specific subject / specialist qualification, ie have a level 5 or 6 qualification or no subject qualification at all, enter on step 3 and are in the G3 qualification group.  Currently, for New Zealand trained teachers these could only be primary trained teachers as secondary trained teachers must have a L7 subject specialist area to gain entry in to a secondary teacher education course.  Overseas trained teachers who become registered but who hold no subject / specialist qualification will also enter on step 3 as G3.

The G1 and G2 notations, with L5 and L6 subject qualifications respectively, continue to apply to teachers who enter with a LAT and are placed on the untrained scale according to their subject qualification.  They also continue to apply to all registered teachers who previously were able to enter into secondary teacher training with subject qualifications less than L7.

Financial advantage from being G3+

The difference between the starting salary of G3 and G3+ is $2675 which is double what the difference was before the March 2011 settlement.  The difference between the maxima for G3 and G3+ has also increased with that settlement from $3371 pa to $3600 pa gross.

Requirements to reach G3+

A teacher with a level 7 subject qualification but no teacher education can become G3+ by doing a one year course of teacher education (or the equivalent if part time). Your local teacher education institution will provide details of any suitable courses they have available. You can also check the NZQA website for suitable courses including any online courses available.

Link to NZQA website Link to New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) website

A teacher with a recognised teaching qualification but no level 7 subject qualification can complete a one year (if full time) level 7 subject/specialist qualification of 120 credits with at least 72 of those credits at level 7.  (Be careful, some Level 7 qualifications do not meet the requirements of 120 credits with 72 of these at Level 7.)

One year Level 7 qualifications are usually called diplomas, advanced diplomas, or graduate diplomas.  (A Level 8 postgraduate diploma would also get you to G3+, but it might be harder to gain entry to it if you do not have a university degree.)  

You may have completed individual papers or partial qualifications which may be able to be credited towards the level 7 qualification you are considering. You would need to talk to the qualification provider about the amount of credit you would get towards that particular qualification.

You can look for possible suitable qualifications in your subject/specialism on the NZQA website.

Link to NZQA website Link to New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) website

Support available for teachers completing qualifications

Teachers who are completing qualifications to make them G3+ have priority in the annual allocation of the 75 full time study awards. These give teachers a year's paid leave to complete a course of study. (Secondary Teachers' Collective Agreement (STCA) clause 6.6.6)

Teachers may also apply for one of the 100 study support grants allocated each year.  These provide $500 towards course fees and a four hour per week time allowance (an extra 4 hours non-contact time) for ongoing study during the year. (STCA 6.6.6A).

Link to PPTA webpage STCA 6.6.6 Study leave

Applications open for these awards each year about April for the next year, and close mid year.  They are advertised in the Education Gazette and through the usual PPTA channels.

Primary trained teachers in secondary schools

A primary trained teacher who is registered could become G3+ by doing just one year's full time equivalent study for a level 7 specialist qualification.  The specialist qualification might be in a subject area or in special needs education, management etc.

PPTA does not advise members with primary teaching qualifications below Bachelor level to upgrade these to Bachelor degrees in teaching.  This will only get you to G3, not to G3+.  You are much better to focus your time and energy on achieving a specialist qualification that will get you to G3+.

Think you are there already "“ or are registered without teacher training?

Some teachers may already have a G3+ qualification but not be at the top of the scale. This may be because the pay centre does not have a correct record of your qualifications.

Some registered teachers who have no "˜recognised teacher education qualification' and have therefore previously been regarded as "˜untrained' will now be eligible to move to the G3+ category from 13 April 2011.

Some non-permanent part time teachers may have G3+ qualifications but not have been moved to the top of the salary scale because they have not had an appraisal and attestation.

Non-permanent teachers should progress to the next step after 1000 hours of teaching (about 4 full terms of employment).  (STCA 4.2.3 (d) (iii))  If you believe this may be what has happened to you, ask the principal at your current school (or the one you are employed at most frequently) to appraise and attest you for your salary increase.

If you think you are eligible for G3+ but have not been accessing the top step on the scale ($71,000)  - or you think the variation may make a change for you then ask your pay centre for a statement of the qualifications they have on record for you "“ and take it from there.

Link to PPTA webpage STCA 4.2 Application of salaries

Short-term relievers, however, are currently barred at Step 10 (STCA 4.4.1)

Link to PPTA webpage STCA 4.4 Payment of salaries - short term relievers

Contact your local PPTA field officer for advice

Link to PPTA webpage PPTA field offices


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