NZEI Te Riu Roa ECE and support staff scholarships

Applications for 2023 scholarships are now open.

The purpose of the scholarships

The scholarships are set up to advance the strategic direction of NZEI Te Riu Roa “Leading the Profession” by providing an opportunity for early childhood education and support staff members to enhance their skills and knowledge within the workplace, and in education generally.

Who is eligible? 

You must be a:

  • fully financial member of NZEI Te Riu Roa for at least one year and
  • teacher employed in an early childhood service or
  • support staff worker employed by an early childhood service or
  • support staff worker employed by a primary, area or secondary school at the time of applying.

There is also an expectation that the eligibility criteria will continue to be met during the scholarship year.  Any change in employment circumstances related to eligibility, either prior to accepting a scholarship offer or during the year of the scholarship, must be communicated to NZEI Te Riu Roa

Selection Criteria

Applications will be assessed on how well your project meets the purpose of the scholarship by showing clearly how it

  • develops and strengthens your ability to contribute to your sector
  • aligns with NZEI Te Riu Roa Kaupapa - specifically Mōku te Ao. For more information please read Mōku te Ao - The Pou and your application.

Your application will also be evaluated on:

  • whether your project has the potential to foster, or contribute to, greater understanding of current education sector issues

and how you will, using SMART goals:

  • share the findings of your project, and the experience it has provided, with your colleagues and the general membership;
  • carry out your project (the process);
  • manage your time throughout the year;
  • evaluate the success of your project; and
  • use the scholarship funds (a breakdown of costs is required).

If you are a successful applicant for a scholarship in 2023, you will be required to

  • provide a milestone report in June 2023 of your progress; and
  • submit a final report to NZEI Te Riu Roa in January 2024; plus
  • Submit a record of your expenditure, including copies of receipts with your final report.

The NZEI Te Riu Roa Leading the Profession Committee will consider how many scholarships will be recommended to the National Executive for approval. The total value of scholarships for 2023 will be to a maximum of $60,000, with a maximum value of $6,000 per scholarship.

The National Executive reserves the right to determine if a report will be published and/or promoted through NZEI Te Riu Roa networks. Please note that any survey to be used with NZEI Te Riu Roa members as a result of being awarded a scholarship must first be approved by the National Executive first.

Application Process

Your application will describe your project in detail and what you hope to achieve.  It will demonstrate how the selection criteria will be met and will provide a summary of how the scholarship money would be used if you were selected as a recipient. Please note that question areas have a maximum word limit of 500. You will also need to supply two referees who support your application.

If you need help with your application you could seek initial support from a colleague in your workplace, network, branch or aronui tomua, someone who is willing to check you have met the application requirements including how your project links to the scholarship criteria.

If you have difficulty accessing this support, we may be able to help. Contact

Following a decision by the selection panel you will be notified of the outcome of your application in September 2022.

The names of scholarship recipients will be made public at the 2022 NZEI Te Riu Roa Annual Conference.  Recipients will receive the first instalment of the scholarship money in October, and presentations of the Scholarship Certificate will take place at a meeting of their area council or branch/aronui tomua in Term 4 2022.  Scholarship recipients would then begin and complete their projects in 2022.

Your application must be completed electronically using this online application form. As the form cannot be saved to come back to, we recommend writing your application in a document you can save before entering it into the form. Please ensure that you follow the selection criteria when completing your application.

Handwritten or emailed applications will not be accepted.

Awarding scholarships

From 2023 there is a change in criteria and approach for awarding scholarships. This allows for more recipients to be awarded scholarships, as well as a greater focus on Mōku te Ao.

The scholarships will be offered annually to a maximum value of $60,000:

  • Support Staff Scholarships will be awarded up to the total value of $36,000, with no individual applicant being awarded more than $6,000.
  • Early Childhood Education Scholarships will be awarded up to the value of $24,000, with no individual applicant being awarded more than $6,000.

The panel's decision is final. No correspondence will be entered into regarding the panel's decision.

Applications for scholarships for 2023 are now open. Please enter your application in this form: Scholarship application

Scholarship Timeline

Friday 6 May 2022 5pm
Closing date for applications

September 2022
Successful and unsuccessful applicants advised

October 2022
Scholarship recipients announced at NZEI Te Riu Roa Annual Conference

October 2022
First instalment of scholarship money deposited into recipients’ bank accounts

Late 2022
Recipients presented with Scholarship Certificates by their area council/branch/aronui tomua


January: 2023
Recipients begin their projects

June: 2023
Milestone Report due

June: 2023
Final instalment of scholarship money following receipt and acceptance of Milestone Report

December 2023
Recipients complete their projects

Final report due January 2024

Read about previous scholarship recipients and their reports