Unfortunately, a glitch has happened with the sabbaticals. The Ministry of Education, with whom we have been working closely, contacted me to bring up an issue that neither they, the PPCB team nor our PPCB lawyer picked up with the sabbaticals. Please read on.

Kia ora PPCB e te Whānau,

Unfortunately, a glitch has happened with the sabbaticals. The Ministry of Education, with whom we have been working closely, contacted me to bring up an issue that neither they, the PPCB team nor our PPCB lawyer picked up with the sabbaticals.

In working through the allocation of sabbaticals they have hit a fairly serious obstacle. It is most unfortunate to have discovered the issue so late in the piece for which the MoE are very apologetic. I believe NZEI brought it to their attention! As we are new and have two Primary Principal Collectives ( as opposed to the Secondary MACA which is a multiple-part collective) they discovered a unique scenario that does throw up unintended consequences.

Our collective agreement does not allow for any form of pro rata ring-fencing. In particular, it specifies access to all 105 sabbaticals and that these sabbaticals are open to all Primary Principals, regardless of Union membership. This is a good thing as it means the 105 can be accessed by our percentage of the membership and have a better chance of getting a sabbatical.

But to have a level playing field, this year, until NZEI settles, we do need PPCB applicants to fill in all aspects of the sabbatical documents on the website instead of our abridged version. The selection committee needs to be able to compare apples with apples.

We did try and negotiate with NZEI to use our abridged version but as several applications have already been received it was decided to carry on with the full application package. If you have submitted an application then the MoE will contact you so you can add the extra two sections and not be penalised.

If you are in the process of applying, ignore our previous instructions and fill in the application as it is on the site.

In terms of other criteria, clause 7.12.4 of the current NZEI Primary Principals’ Collective provides that “7.12.4 The [sabbatical] scheme will be transparent and use criteria developed by the Ministry , NZEI Te Riu Roa and NZSTA for the selection of recipients. It will operate according to a process similar to that for study leave in clause 7.10 with representation from NZEI Te Riu Roa principals, NZSTA and the Ministry on the selection panel.”

The Ministry of Education has approached NZEI on our behalf to negotiate a PPCB member to be on the panel and we are waiting to hear back. Rest assured, we will be looking carefully at the wording for the next Collective.

The Ministry of Education has taken responsibility for the muck up but we also didn’t pick it up and I want to apologise for any inconvenience. As we have found there are many unintended consequences cropping up that we didn’t anticipate when forming our union but this one probably impacted more of you.

So in summary

· PPCB members now have access to all 105 sabbaticals.

· To ensure that apples are compared with apples then the form on the TeachNZ site must be filled in by all applicants.

· If your application has been submitted then MoE will contact you to ensure you fill in the sections that need filling in.

· We are waiting to see if we can get a PPCB member on the panel. I’ll keep you posted

· It does not affect the reporting – you will report to your BoT as we negotiated.

Wording from Collective

7.11 Sabbatical leave scheme

7.11.1 A sabbatical leave scheme for primary principals will apply according to the following:

(a) There will be up to 105 full-time equivalent sabbaticals awarded annually (Note: this may result in sabbatical leave being awarded to more than 105 primary principals during one school year),

(b) A full-time equivalent sabbatical will be of ten weeks duration paid at the rate of the principal’s normal pay.

(c) Principals may apply for ten-week, five-week or three-week sabbaticals; however, ten-week sabbaticals will be allocated first.

(d) A ten-week sabbatical may, with the board’s approval, be taken in two blocks during one school year. Each block must be whole weeks in duration and the smallest block must be for at least three weeks.

7.11.2 Entitlement to the sabbatical is subject to:

(a) service of at least five years as a primary principal in the state sector. Time spent on Secondment to a Specified Education Sector Agency is not recognised as service for the purposes of this clause

(b) application by the principal which has the support of their school board; and

(c) the submission of a proposal of work to be undertaken during the sabbatical leave.

7.11.3 The scheme is open to all primary principals, regardless of union membership.

7.11.4 Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga | The Ministry of Education will consult with relevant parties on any changes to the criteria for the scheme and its operation.

Any questions, as always email or ring me.

Nga mihi,

Very apologetically

Denise Torrey



021 262 5557