Interventions in state and integrated schools and kura

A statutory intervention is a process where we support schools and kura needing help with operational risks or risk to the welfare or educational performance of their students. 

The aim of any intervention is always to return the school to full self management as soon as the recommendations of the intervention have been met. When an intervention is in place the day to day running of the school remains with the principal.

If you feel your school or kura needs help, contact your local Ministry office or try the information in our sector support for schools and kura page. 

When does an intervention happen?

An Intervention may happen when a board or proprietor requests help with a particular issue or may occur after an ERO review report or a concern has been raised with the Ministry. When this happens, the Ministry will consider the most appropriate action from a range of options - which could include non statutory intervention support. The Minister of Education or the Secretary for Education has to approve an intervention.

Levels of statutory interventions

There are 9 different statutory interventions that can be used to support the different situations and issues schools and kura may face:

Risk thresholdType of interventionLink to legislationWhat this means for the board

Reasonable grounds for concern

Requirement to provide information

Section 78J:

The Board retains its powers but is required to provide specified information, and may be required to provide analysis of information provided.

 

Specialist help

Section 78K:

The Board retains its powers but is required to engage specialist help (specialist advisor), and may be required to report on the specialist help. 

 

Action Plan

Section 78L:

The Board is required to prepare and carry out an Action Plan.

 

Case conference

Section 78LA

The Board retains its powers but is required to attend a case conference (which may result in the board agreeing or being required to take a particular action/s, and provide a report/s on the action/s).

 

Specialist Audit

Section 78LB

The Board retains its powers but is required to engage an appropriately qualified person to undertake a specialist audit of any aspect of the school’s affairs (which may also include reporting requirements by the board on the audit).

 

Performance notice

Section 78LC

Board retains its powers but is required to carry out a specified action by a specified date (the performance notice may also include reporting requirements by the board on the action taken).

 

Risk thresholdType of InterventionLink to LegislationWhat this means for the Board

Reasonable grounds to believe

Appointment of additional trustee who may also be presiding trustee  by Minister

Section 78LD

Board retains its powers. The appointed trustee will only have one vote.  If appointed as the presiding trustee, the trustee will have no special powers other than to preside at meetings. Appointee is only eligible for the same honoraria as other trustees.

 

Limited Statutory Manager (LSM)

Section 78M:

Some Board powers are temporarily removed and vested in the Limited Statutory Manager. 

 

Commissioner

Section 78N(1)(2)

Board is dissolved and a Commissioner is appointed to replace the Board. The Commissioner holds all the functions, powers and duties of the Board the Commissioner has replaced.

    Section 78N(3)

Commissioner appointed by the Secretary as there is no functioning Board (e.g. owing to election issues or too few members or refusal to meet). The Commissioner holds all the functions, powers and duties of the Board the Commissioner has replaced. 

 

Who pays for an intervention

A board pays for the intervention unless the Secretary decides otherwise.  When a school or kura cannot meet these costs without putting teaching and learning at risk, the Ministry will consider funding some or all of the costs of an intervention.

Reviewing and ending interventions

  • We’re required to review an intervention at least annually.
  • An intervention remains in place until the Secretary or Minister consider either that it is no longer required, or that there is a change in the level of risk and another type of intervention is required.
  • If a statutory intervention ends or is revoked, then the Ministry will continue to monitor progress and maintain an informal level of support for whatever period is considered necessary to sustain the positive change.

Some examples of operational risk or risk to student welfare 

Risk to the operation of a school. This could include financial management issues, personnel management and/or asset management, poor planning, policy setting and reporting to parents, poor community relationships and not complying with legislation.

Risk to student welfare. This could include inadequate policies and practices to ensure student welfare, health and safety, persistently high truancy rates, and high suspension, exclusion and expulsion rates. When a critical incident relating to student welfare and safety occurs at a school, a statutory intervention may be put in place to assist the school with managing the crisis.

Risk to the educational performance of the school's students includes inadequate curriculum management, absence of adequate policies and processes for student assessment, staffing issues that may influence student performance, persistently low student achievement in relation to comparable schools, and low achievement of particular groups within the school.

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