Performance Management

To print from the document below: highlight the passages you want and choose 'print selection' in your print dialogue box.

Page index:
Performance management
Legislative Requirements
Role of the principal
Collective Agreement Requirements
The role of ERO
Implementing the interim professional standards

Performance management

All schools are required to have a performance management system for teachers and principals which includes policies and procedures on:

  • interim professional standards (IPS)
  • appraisal
  • complaints, competency and disciplinary procedures.

These policies and procedures should refer to all staff.

This section of the kit is to:

  • remind principals that documented evidence of their school's performance management system is required
  • indicate that Interim Professional Standards will be audited by the Education Review Office (ERO)
  • alert principals to what helpful material is available and encourage them to seek further information
  • encourage professionalism
  • remind principals that there are different IPS for teachers, for APs/DPs, for principals, for RTLBs
  • remind principals that the school performance management system should include support staff
  • provide principals with a list of resources and reference material which will set the components of performance management within a broader picture.

This section of the kit is also designed to encourage the development of a staff approach to appraisal. It includes the minimum requirements set out in the Ministry of Education guidelines.

A comprehensive robust performance management system, which includes a helpful and effective appraisal cycle is important for staff. Consultation will ensure the process is soundly based and leads to the goals and objectives of the school being met.

Legislative Requirements

The legislative basis for personnel management, which includes performance management, teacher registration and appraisal, is contained in:

  • State Sector Act 1999 (Part VII and s77C)
  • Education Act 1989
  • Collective and individual employment agreements.

The Ministry of Education published a series of guidelines on Performance Management Systems in 1997. More information

National Administrative Guidelines (NAGS)

The legislative authority is reinforced by the revised NAGs 2003. Part 3 requires each board to develop and implement personnel and industrial policies which promote high levels of staff performance, use educational resources effectively and recognise the needs of students'. (The New Zealand Gazette 25 November 1999). NAGS

Most importantly the NAGs are for each board of trustees/school to interpret, then determine their own systems in a self-managing context.

New Zealand Teachers Council (NZTC) Satisfactory Teacher Dimensions

To satisfy the registration requirements under the Education Act 1989, each teacher is expected to demonstrate satisfactory teacher performance covering four dimensions (professional knowledge, professional practice, professional relationships, professional leadership).

The dimensions are generic and apply to all teachers at different stages of their career (provisionally and fully registered). A range of elements that could be considered under each dimension is also provided. The NZTC cautions that the elements are not meant to be a checklist for a model teacher but simply serve as an indicator of some of the factors that could be considered by any appraisal process.

It is the responsibility of the school to specify the skills, understandings, behaviours and curriculum knowledge relevant to the particular teaching position. Similarly, the standard to determine whether a teacher meets the dimensions is left to the professional judgement of the principal or the senior staff. Satisfactory Teacher Dimensions

Performance Management in Schools

The State Sector Act 1988 and the Education Act 1989 provide the framework for performance management in schools. The ministry drew up the framework for performance management and the subsequent guidelines after considerable consultation.

The purpose of the mandatory requirements is essentially managerial although the three parts are broad enough to allow professional judgment to be exercised.
All schools must have a performance management system that takes account of the specified:

  • principles that underpin the policies and processes boards have in place for the appraisal of teacher performance
  • features of the appraisal process for all staff
  • aspects of teachers' performance which should be appraised.

Primary Teachers' Collective Agreement - interim professional standards (IPS)

The interim professional standards (IPS) for primary school teachers, deputy and assistant principals have been a requirement since 1 January 1999 and form part of the current collective agreement for primary teachers (PTCA), including deputy and assistant principals and unit holders.

The purpose of the standards is to show competencies required and they can be used to determine pay progression and provide a link to the competency procedures of the collective agreement.

A teacher is expected to meet and demonstrate the standards at the appropriate level and any preceding level. The contractual requirements, a model for implementation and examples of performance indicators are in the NZEI Te Riu Roa publication, Implementing Professional Standards.


Attestation against the professional standards for salary purposes must be completed by the principal. Full documentation of this process must be kept, detailing the evidence used to attest or not.

Should a principal not attest, salary progression can be deferred and a competency process would be started or continued. Further information is available in the collective agreement.

Education Review Office evaluative criteria July 2000

The evaluative criteria is used by the Review Office during their investigations and in forming judgements about the quality of schools' education. ERO's evaluation criteria

The Primary Principals' Collective Agreement - annual performance review

The Primary Principals' Collective Agreement (PPCA) requires all principals to have an annual performance agreement, including the relevant professional standards. There is one set of standards, applicable to all principals. Teaching principals must also meet the professional standards applicable to teachers.

An additional payment is available to those principals who have 3 years service at their current U grade or higher and who have been attested and have met the professional standards. PPCA

Teacher competency and professional standards

Where there are matters of competency which are causing concern or where a teacher, deputy or assistant principal, or principal fails to meet the interim professional standards, the principal shall put in place appropriate assistance and personal guidance. If this does not remedy the situation, principals should work through the procedures in the appropriate collective agreements.

If a teacher fails to meet the IPS they may have their salary deferred and agree to reach the standards within a set period of time. If they fail to meet the standards within the timeframe agreed and they have failed to meet the beginning or registered teachers' standards, they will be subject to competency procedures.

Experienced teachers failing to meet the beginning or registered teachers' standards may also be subject to competency procedures.

Deputy and assistant principals and principals may be subject to competency procedures if they fail to meet the relevant professional standards.


The appraisal report of individual teachers would normally be confidential to the appraisee and the principal unless the appraisee agrees otherwise. Once the board has delegated responsibility for appraisal, individual board members would not normally have access to the appraisal documentation.

The Education Review Office has a statutory right to examine any information in a school for the legitimate purpose of conducting any reviews.

In developing a statement on confidentiality, boards should consider the relevant aspects of the Privacy Act and the Official Information Act.

A process is required to deal with any dissatisfaction that might arise, however, the board as employer has responsibility for the final decision.

The principal has a key role to ensure protocols are agreed, established and understood by all including the board of trustees prior to any appraisal process being implemented.



Current collective agreement for primary teachers, deputy principals,
assistant principals and other unit holders

Current collective agreement for primary principals
Current collective agreement for support staff


New Zealand Teachers Council
New Zealand School Trustees Associations


Bell, B & Gilbert, J. (1996) Teacher Development: A Model from Science Education. London : Falmer Press
Cardno, C & Piggott Irvine, E ( ) Appraisal
Evans, A & Tomlinson, J. (1989) Teacher Appraisal: a Nation-wide approach. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
McGee, C & Fraser, D. (1994) The Professional Practice of Teaching. Palmerston North, New Zealand Dunmore Press Ltd
Showers, B & Joyce, B. (1996) The Evolution of Peer Coaching. Educational Leadership, March
Stewart, D. (2000) Tomorrow's Principals Today. Palmerston North, New Zealand: Kanuka Grove Press
Sutton, R. (1994) School Self Review: a Practical Approach. Salford , UK :R.S. Publications.


The primary purpose of appraisal

Teachers and support staff are appraised to provide feedback and identify training needs, so their knowledge and experience can grow. In this way, appraisal of teachers has a direct benefit on the learning experience of students, and appraisal of support staff can enhance their contribution to teams in schools.

Research on teacher effectiveness

This shows that staff are able to do their job better if they:

  • know and agree to what is expected of them
  • collaborate and receive feedback on their work from colleagues
  • are able to raise and discuss problems openly with colleagues
  • receive support and guidance to achieve in areas where confidence is lacking
  • have their contributions recognised and valued.

 All of these statements are also applicable to support staff

In successful schools the efforts and behaviours of all staff are directed towards a series of clearly stated agreed organisational goals and expectations. This should include discussion of beliefs and values.

An appraisal process must:

  • be part of the professional growth and reflection of the individual teacher/staff member
  • be part of professional accountability to students, parents and colleagues
  • focus on the quality of teaching and learning
  • connect with the whole school processes founded on professional development
  • be the responsibility of staff as a group
  • start with what staff already believe are their strengths and experience
  • involve teachers/staff members telling about their own experiences, reflecting, thinking, analysing and planning with colleagues
  • have a range of resources to provide support where and when it is needed
  • not be confused with the competency procedures.

Appraisal is not about managing unsatisfactory performance

Appraisal is not the process that should be used to investigate specific concerns about a staff member's performance.

If a staff member is unwilling to make the necessary changes to improve performance, little progress can be made by further appraisal.

Procedures outside appraisal should be used. The collective agreements contain competency procedures which provide a clear, structured approach to help staff to find ways to improve with professional support.

School climate

A favourable school climate is critical to successful appraisal systems. Factors which contribute to a favourable climate are:

  • An open management style
  • The valuing of individuals' contributions
  • Shared understanding of effective classroom teaching and learning
  • Commitment from all staff.

Professional Standards

The professional standards were introduced in 1998 as part of the settlement of the primary teachers' interim and principals' collective agreements. Schools are required to implement the standards as part of their performance management system. Standards should be integrated with school policies and professional development activities. School goals drive the standards and each school should determine how the standards can be integrated to best meet their broad aims and objectives.

Performance indicators show what is expected of a teacher or AP/DP in relation to the standards. Establishing indicators starts with identifying school goals and setting objectives for each. The standards are then matched with each of the objectives and indicators can be developed to show how the objectives can be met.

This process should be worked through with the staff and documented within the school's performance management system.

Role of the principal

The principal should have delegated authority from the board to assess teacher and deputy and assistant principal's performance against the professional standards. The principal uses her/his professional judgement to determine whether individual staff have met each of the standards.

Collective Agreement Requirements

Legal requirements for the implementation and recognition of the professional standards are set out in the collective agreements. The board has overall responsibility to ensure the provisions in collective agreements are met.

Teachers are required to meet the standards to progress through the salary scale. Teachers must be assessed against the standards annually before salary increments are approved. Failure to meet the standards could result in teacher's progression being deferred and the teacher being subject to competency procedures.

The teachers' standards cover seven dimensions and are at three levels - beginning teachers, fully registered teachers, and experienced teachers. Beginning teachers must have at least two annual assessments against the professional standards for the beginning teacher before moving to the fully registered level. Fully registered teachers and experienced teachers will have at least three against the fully registered teacher professional standards. Experienced teachers will continue to be assessed annually against the experienced teacher standards.

Deputy and assistant principals must meet DP/AP standards annually. Failure to do so may result in competency proceedings. The deputy and assistant principals' standards cover five dimensions. People with teaching responsibilities will also need to meet the teachers' standards.

Principals must also meet standards. The principal's standards cover six dimensions and must be included in the principal's performance agreement.

The role of ERO

ERO's role is to confirm the documentation and process are in place for assessment against IPS. The school should check with ERO to ensure the correct standard of compliance has been reached. ERO has no role in determining whether a teacher progresses through the salary scale.

Implementing the interim professional standards

The performance management system documentation must show how staff are appraised against the professional standards. The performance indicators developed for each of the standards could simply be attached to the documentation. The recording of comments and results of a teacher's annual appraisal would be incorporated into the school's documentation

A job description can also be amended to include the standards. A sentence to reflect the requirement to meet the standards could be added to the job description.
The standards for principals should be reflected in the principal's performance agreement.