The Reform of Vocational Education (ROVE) provides a generational change in how vocational training will be delivered across New Zealand. It has been designed “to create a stronger, more unified, and sustainable vocational education system”.
The transition to the new system is not expected to be completed until December 2022.
What is ROVE?
In February 2019, the Government proposed a Reform of Vocational Education. The system changes propose that New Zealand will end up with a strong, unified, sustainable vocational education system fit for future work, delivering the skills that learners, employers and communities need to thrive.
Following a period of public consultation, in August the reforms were confirmed to proceed. These are the biggest reforms of New Zealand’s Vocational Education system in 30 years.
The seven key changes include:
- Create six Workforce Development Councils (WDCs) to assume responsibility for skills leadership and standard setting.
- Establish Regional Skills Leadership Groups to provide advice on the skills needs of their regions to the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC), workforce development councils, and local vocational education providers.
- Establish Te Taumata Aronui to ensure that the Reform of Vocational Education reflects the Government’s commitment to Māori Crown partnerships.
- Create the New Zealand Insitute of Skills and Technology (Te Pūkenga). This is a unified, sustainable, public network of regionally accessible vocational education, bringing together the 16 Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics (ITPs).
- Transfer the role of supporting workplace learning from ITOs to the provider network. Te Pūkenga and other providers would support workplace-based, on-the-job training as well as delivering education and training in provider-based, off-the-job settings, to achieve seamless integration between the settings and to be well connected with the needs of industry.
- Establish Centres of Vocational Excellence (CoVEs) to grow excellent vocational education provision and share high-quality curriculum and programme design across the system.
- Unify the vocational education funding system for all provider-based and work-integrated education at certificate and diploma qualification levels 3 to 7 (excluding degree study) and all industry training.
Current and future years
Skills will continue to support its industries and access to industry training throughout the transition period.
|Jan 2023||New unified funding system operates|
|December 2022||Transition period to be completed|
|December 2021||Expected date of approval of transition plan|
|4 October 2021||WDC go live – employment commences|
|September 2021||Submission of Skills transition plan
|22 July 2021||Commencement of closed recruitment process for TITO and NZQA employees|
|9 July – 13 July||Newly appointed WDC Councils confirm proposed org structures
|16 June 2021||The New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA)’s formal consultation process closed Information available here
|16 June 2021||WDC Chief Executive recruitment process commences|
|13 May 2021||Passing of Orders in Council for WDCs|
|April 2021||Te Pūkenga consulting on its service concepts to 26 April 2021|
|April 2021||WDC Council members sought, applications closed 16 April 2021|
|March 2021||WDC Nominations and Appointment Committees sought|
WDC Order in Council Consultation.
The Order in Council process is what is required to stand up the Workforce Development Councils as Crown-owned entities.
|August 2020||The Education and Training Act 2020 comes into effect.|
|July 2020||Interim Regional Skills Leadership Groups established|
|June 2020||Interim Establishment Boards for Workforce Development Councils appointed|
The 16 Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics (ITPs) become subsidiary companies to Te Pūkenga (New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology)
Industry Training Organisations (ITOs) become Transitional Industry Training Organisations (TITO’s)
|December 2019||After consultation on the number of Workforce Development Councils, Education Minister, Chris Hipkins, announced that there will be six industry-led Workforce Development Councils.|
|August 2019||After a period of consultation, the reforms were committed to proceed|
|February 2019||Announcement of reforms|
Important links for you to know about
Overview of ROVE
Workforce Development Councils
Te Pūkenga (New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology)
Te Taumata Aronui
An overview of the work and membership of the group
Centres of Vocational Excellence (CoVEs)
Unified vocational education funding system
Unified vocational education funding system information
Regional Sector Leadership Groups
Find out more about what Regional Sector Leadership Groups are doing and links to the regional groups and the reporting for each region.
How are ITOs changing in ROVE?
Of the seven changes, two of them most directly affect ITOs, and ITOs have now become Transitional ITOs to recognise these changes are occurring.
Responsibility for standard-setting (and skills leadership) pass from the Transitional ITOs to the 6 Workforce Development Councils. This is expected to occur before the end of 2021.
Responsibility for ‘arranging training’ – supporting workplace learning pass from Transitional ITOs to the provider network. This will occur by the end of 2022. In the meantime, Skills will continue enrolling and supporting workplace learning.
Which WDC will my industry go to?
|Industry||Workforce Development Council|
|Ambulance||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
|Building Surveying||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Civil Defence||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
|Cranes||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Drainlaying||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Electrical||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Electronics||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Electronic Manufacturing||Hanga-Aro-Rau Manufacturing, Engineering and Logistics|
|Elevated Work Platforms||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Emergency Communications||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
|Fire and Rescue||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
|First aid||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
|Gasfitting||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Industrial Rope Access||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Intelligence||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
|Offender management||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
|Plumbing||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Regulatory practice||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
|Rigging||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Roofing||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Scaffolding||Waihanga Ara Rau Construction and Infrastructure|
|Workplace Health and Safety||Community, Health, Education and Social Services|
Who will support workplace learning when TITOs stop?
The provider network consists of Te Pūkenga, the new organisation being created as a unified public network, Wānanga, and Private Training Establishments (PTEs). One or more of these organisations will be supporting workplace training for your industry after the transition period ends in December 2022.
Exactly which provider supports which industry, programme, learner, and their employer is still being worked on in the Skills Transition Plan.
What is the Skills Transition plan?
The Skills Transition Plan details the recipients of the responsibilities for arranging training (supporting workplace learning) and standard-setting, explains what capabilities and resources they need to support those responsibilities, and describes when and how any changes will happen. All with a focus on making the transition as seamless as possible, maintaining support for workplace learning, and trying to achieve the best outcomes.
We are talking with Te Pūkenga, Wānanga, and Private Training Establishments (PTEs), to understand their interest and capability. We are talking with our members and industries to understand their needs and thinking. We will be surveying employers, apprentices, and trainees to understand their needs and thinking. We are talking to Skills staff whose roles are affected by the changes.
All of this goes into creating the Transition plan. This will then go to TEC for approval. By the end of 2021, we expect to have an approved plan, and by the end of 2022, we will have enacted it.
My apprenticeship will finish after December 2022, what happens to me?
As we work through the detail, we will share with you how this will all work. Rest assured, until then we will do everything possible to ensure that your learning journey is not interrupted as you progress to the completion of your apprenticeship – before or after Dec 2022.
As an employer, will I have choices about where my apprentice goes?
Skills believes in choice and is trying to ensure choices will remain available to employers and their employees as we work through the transition. As it is now, sometimes an area is too small/niche for there to be more than one provider.
After the transition period, new providers may choose to support workplace training, so new choices may become available.