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Lead schools are responsible for employing RTLB within the staffing entitlement.

RTLB staffing entitlement

The RTLB funding and service agreement specifies the number of full-time staffing positions (cluster manager and RTLB). The staffing entitlement is determined by the following factors:

  • cluster kura/school roll numbers
  • cluster kura/ school deciles
  • the number of Māori students in the cluster
  • the number of Pasifika students in the cluster
  • the distances between cluster kura/schools.
Leadership payments

The Funding and Service Agreement specifies the number of RTLB leadership payments that the lead kura/school board is able to allocate to the cluster manager or any RTLB with designated responsibility for providing leadership.

Banked staffing

RTLB staffing cannot be banked as part of the lead school’s banked staffing process.

The RTLB staffing entitlement cannot be included in the lead school’s banked staffing because RTLB are attached teachers and not part of a lead school’s total regular staffing entitlement. Consequently RTLB are not included in the staffing that is eligible to be reimbursed if under-used.

Managing un-used RTLB staffing entitlement

The RTLB resource has been appropriated for the specific purpose of employing RTLB teachers.  Not all RTLB positions are filled all of the time however. This can be due to a variety of reasons including:

  • the time taken during the recruitment process
  • a lack of suitably qualified staff applying for positions
  • staff taking Leave Without Pay (LWOP).

These situations can result in clusters under using their RTLB staffing entitlement.  

There are two ways in which you can manage your RTLB staffing to get the most out of your entitlement.

  • Like your non-RTLB banking staffing, you can overuse your RTLB staffing entitlement to balance any underuse that you have accrued during the year. This is with the proviso that at the end of the year your RTLB banking staffing usage does not exceed your entitlement.
  • In cases where you cannot appoint an RTLB teacher you can use your RTLB staffing entitlement to employ non-RTLB teachers. These teachers should be undertaking work that benefits the RTLB service and consequently the schools and children and young people within the cluster.

RTLB un-used staffing cannot be used to employ staff other than teachers.  Positions must be fixed term, long term relievers (LTR) from .2 to full time. 

Employees must hold a ‘Provisional’, ‘Subject to Confirmation’, or ‘Full’ Practising Certificate. 

Employing teachers who are qualified RTLB or who are working as an RTLB ie they have a caseload

Teachers who have attained the Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching (Learning and Behaviour) are coded as S23.  These teachers will receive the management unit and the Special Duties Allowance (SDA).  Staffing use will be charged against the lead school’s RTLB entitlement. 

Employing teachers who are not qualified RTLB but are supporting the work of RTLB

Teachers who have not attained the Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching (Learning and Behaviour) are coded as S12. Staffing use will be charged against the lead school’s staffing entitlement.  The lead school contacts Ministry of Education Resourcing requesting the staffing use be charged against the lead school’s RTLB entitlement.  These teachers will not receive the management unit and Special Duties Allowance (SDA).

Guiding Principles

Key principles to guide you when considering employing non-RTLB teachers utilising un-used RTLB staffing entitlement are:

   1. The Lead School Board of Trustees through the Lead School Principal and Cluster Manager has a responsibility to:

  • manage the RTLB workforce so that students, teachers and cluster schools receive a quality service that meets their needs
  • employ RTLB who are able to provide an effective service for all students, in all school/kura settings
  • manage resourcing in a transparent and needs-based manner.

   2. The cluster’s schools and students must benefit either directly or indirectly from the employment of staff.

   3. The RTLB cluster’s capacity to provide a service to schools within the cluster is enhanced.


Below are examples of some of the roles of staff employed using un-used RTLB staffing: 

  • Organising and/or facilitating Professional Learning and Development (PLD) opportunities for RTLB and cluster schools’ staff in e.g. Restorative Practice (RP); supporting students with dyslexia; or Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD).
  • Providing 1-to-1 counselling or completing psychological assessments of students.  These teachers would hold appropriate qualifications over and above their teachers’ practising certificate.
  • Facilitating mentoring programmes for individual students on an RTLB caseload.
  • Completing assessments for students to identify those with High Learning Needs (HLN) or those that would benefit from accessing Special Assessment Conditions (SAC) for NCEA.
  • Completing assessments to contribute towards Gateway Assessment Education profiles.
  • Supporting RTLB with aspects of the RTLB practice sequence e.g. completing observations and assessments. 
  • Organising and/or facilitating specialist programmes that support students to re-engage with their learning e.g. SPEC.
  • Providing lead school principal release to enable them to engage with RTLB related activities e.g. accompanying cluster managers to principal network meetings, undertaking appraisals.
  • Inputting data into the cluster’s database.
  • Completing a stock take of cluster resources.

Sick leave reliever funding

Where an RTLB is absent, on paid sick leave, due to his or her own illness for at least one school week, and a suitably qualified (RTLB) reliever is employed to cover the absence, additional relief teacher funding (ARTF) reimbursement may be paid to the employing board.  Reimbursement can be claimed from the first day of the RTLB’s sick leave; the eight day rule does not apply.

The ARTF policy applies in the case of RTLB absent for their own illness, not for leave granted to care for dependents or for board granted discretionary leave.

Ministry reimbursement for sick leave is not available for additional RTLB who are employed from cluster operational funding.

Visit the Ministry website for more information on School staffing


ACC covers 80% of an RTLB’s salary when they are absent due to an accident.  Ministry Resourcing will reimburse schools the 20% shortfall in cash.  To claim the 20% ACC, lead schools should submit an RT2 form with relative documents (outlined on the form) and a covering letter advising the RTLB reliever/s they have employed to cover the ACC leave.

Note: Disregard the statement on the RT2 form which states: 

  • ACC Claims:  For an injured employee, boards receive directly, via the Education Service Payroll, the Earnings Related Compensation (ERC) from ACC.  No claim for additional relief teacher funding is necessary.

Lead schools can charge RTLB relievers to bulk grant. This will give lead schools the flexibility to use the cash reimbursement directly for the reliever brought in to cover for RTLB who is absent due to an accident.  


Content last updated: March 2017