The Teaching Council is seeking feedback on its proposed changes to the process for investigating teacher competency and discipline.

The proposed changes include:

  • Changing the level at which a matter is referred to the Disciplinary Tribunal from potential serious misconduct, to a likelihood of suspension or cancellation of registration.  This is designed to reduce the number of cases the Disciplinary Tribunal has to consider and thereby speed up the process and lower the cost to the profession.
  • Removing Complaints Assessment Committee (CAC) powers to suspend.
  • Removing the requirement for the CAC to seek approval from a complainant to agreed outcomes.
  • Providing for complainants or teachers to seek a review by the Disciplinary Tribunal of CAC decisions.
  • Taking into account the personal circumstances of a teacher.
  • Requiring the teachers and the complainant’s circumstances to be taken into account when putting together the members of a CAC.
  • Confirming that the teacher and complainant can be accompanied by support persons at a CAC meeting and Disciplinary Tribunal hearings.
  • Giving a teacher the opportunity to comment on a report prepared about their competence.
  • Improving cultural appropriateness by having regard to honouring the Treaty of Waitangi and Maori-Crown relationships and considering the composition of a CAC in relation to te reo Maori, tikanga Maori and Maori medium education.
  • Allowing the Disciplinary Tribunal to recognise tikanga Maori in its procedures and for knowledge of tikanga and te reo etc to be factors considered when appointing members of the Tribunal and Competency Authority.
  • Requiring the complainant to be notified of decisions during the process.
  • Balancing confidentiality and privacy with public interest when deciding on publication of decisions.

Further details of these and other proposed changes can be found on the Teaching Council website.

The disciplinary and competency processes are vital parts of the self-regulation of the profession, so it is important that the processes are fair and appropriate for all involved and that as many people and groups as possible give feedback on the proposed changes.


Leading law firms committed to helping clients cost-effectively will have a range of fixed-price Initial Consultations to suit most people’s needs in quickly learning what their options are.  At Rainey Collins we have an experienced team who can answer your questions and put you on the right track.

Alan Knowsley

Education Lawyer