Paper marae suspended from the ceiling by string.

ECE and Support Staff Scholarships

NZEI Te Riu Roa ECE and support staff scholarships

Applications for the 2023 scholarships have now closed.

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. 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.

You should be:

  1. A teacher employed in an early childhood service; or,
  2. A support staff worker employed by and early childhood service; or,
  3. A support staff worker employed by a primary, area or secondary school at the time of applying

Thinking of applying?

Applications for 2023 scholarships are now closed. Keep an eye on this page for when applications will open again. 

To learn more about the application process, what to expect and how to write a good application, check out the article linked below. 

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
First instalment of scholarship money deposited into recipients’ bank accounts

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

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

December 2023 - Recipients complete their projects

Final report due January 2024

Becoming a History Teacher with an Indigenising/De-colonisation Focus

Barry Mclernon is a support staff member at Hawera High School – Endeavour Disability Centre. His successful proposal was titled, Becoming a History Teacher with an Indiginising/De-colonisation Focus. His project involves completing a Graduate Teaching Diploma in Secondary Level Education with a focus on History, Social Studies and Health Education. He has a passion for environmental and indigenous rights. He aims to use his tertiary education in History and Politics as well as his personal experience and contacts in te ao Māori and social justice activism to provide professional, engaging, inclusive and exciting teaching content that unpacks the effects of colonisation with an international and local history focus.

Strengthening and normalising the use of Te Reo Māori throughout the classroom, in the school community and education sector

Josephine Westley is a teacher aide at Richmond Primary School. Her project is titled, Strengthening and normalising the use of Te Reo Māori throughout the classroom, in the school community and education sector. To do this, she will take part in the Te Ahu o Te Reo Māori course. This course focuses on five areas, including local dialect, practice of Te Reo Māori, foundations of grammar and writing conventions, development of Te Reo Māori language in curriculum delivery and strategies to promote Māori language in classrooms and school communities. She will use the knowledge and skills gained through the programme to enhance her relationships with students, colleagues and whānau.

Sharing the magic of Yoga: Empowering tamariki to care for their wellbeing through yoga and connecting with whānau for the learning to flourish.

Kim Thomson is an early childhood education teacher at Tōtara Park Kindergarten. Her successful proposal is titled, Sharing the magic of Yoga: Empowering tamariki to care for their wellbeing through yoga and connecting with whānau for the learning to flourish. She plans to implement intentional strategies through yoga that help tamariki gain the skills they need to help establish the foundations for lifelong social and emotional wellbeing. This project builds on a recent Teaching Led Innovation Fund project which focused on nurturing social and emotional competencies through mindfulness practices. She hopes that the flow on effect of sharing the knowledge can continue to grow and flourish supporting strong, resilient, empowered members of society who can navigate life’s challenges.

Exploring the sector specific needs and expectations of recently appointed leaders in ECE in NZ from a lived experience perspective

Rachel Foster is an early childhood education teacher at University Kids, Victoria University of Wellington. Her successful project is titled, Exploring the sector specific needs and expectations of recently appointed leaders in ECE in NZ from a lived experience perspective. Her qualitative research uses a pragmatic conceptual framework aligned with an exploratory methodological approach and involves exploring the preparation, support, and current learning needs of recently appointed leaders in New Zealand Early Childhood Education contexts. She has completed her field work and is currently working of writing up findings of the study. She hopes that her research will contribute to understanding the professional learning needs of recently appointed ECE leaders.

Improving Māori Academic Achievement by improving Māori Attendance

Rangi Williams is a teacher aide at Kelston Boys’ High School. His project is titled, Improving Māori Academic Achievement by improving Māori Attendance. This project aims to use attendance as the vehicle for change. It will track a group of Māori students, their whānau and their interactions with the school and how attendance effects their academic achievement. This research will gather evidence of patterns, mindset and barriers to academic achievement and create an engagement framework to engage with tauira and whānau to increase Māori academic achievement. Ongoing tracking of attendance, hui with tauia and whānau as well as teaching staff will implement positive engagement methods based on Professor Mason Durie’s Te Whare Tapa Whā health model will be used.

Strong Minds, Strong Hearts - Achieving a Graduate Diploma in Education and Psychology

Ruby Gray is a teacher aide at Berhampore School. Her successful project is titled, Strong Minds, Strong Hearts - Achieving a Graduate Diploma in Education and Psychology. She will begin researching the question, “how do we create optimum wellbeing outcomes for neurodiverse children in Aotearoa?” She will take a holistic approach to study how we as educators and parents can best support the development of cognitive, social, emotional, and self-management skills in our neurodiverse tamariki. During the scholarship year she aims to write an article that identifies and discusses practical solutions and further steps that can be taken in the sector towards best supporting some of our most vulnerable students.

Whaowhia Te Kete Mātauranga - Fill the Basket of Knowledge

Siobhán McKenna-Murphy is a support staff member at National Park School, Ruapehu. Her project is titled, Whaowhia Te Kete Mātauranga - Fill the Basket of Knowledge. Her project has dual meanings, as she plans to not only continue to fill her professional kete by developing her knowledge and understanding of how to be an effective and culturally responsive kaiako in Aotearoa by completing her degree studies at the University of Waikato, but she plans to literally fill her kete with rich and meaningful resources she can carry with her into her teaching practice to enhance the learning of ngā tamariki.

Leading Sustainable Enterprise

Sue Kemp is a support staff member and Executive Officer at St Catherine’s College, Wellington. Her project is to complete three papers from Otago University’s online MBA Course. One of the papers she will be completing is Leading Sustainable Enterprise. This paper will assist in learning how to make the school sector more sustainable. Students are extremely concerned about this issue. The paper teaches the key concepts, the legal, institutional, national and global contexts of sustainability. Students, teachers and support staff will all benefit from greater understanding in this area and how to take action for a more sustainable future

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