Adult Literacy and Numeracy Initiatives Update from the TEC

tec logo (black base colour jpg)_as of 9june10

The TEC have updated their website with a handy list of the adult literacy and numeracy initiatives including funds that they have developed and support currently.

I’ve pasted the whole thing in below including hyperlinks. The original page is here.

For those of you working on your NCALNE (Voc) professional development, this information is relevant for the first assessment task which looks at the context of adult literacy and numeracy in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Adult Literacy and Numeracy

This webpage gives you more information about the TEC’s work in lifting adult literacy and numeracy, including the TEC’s literacy and numeracy funds, and resources to help educators and lift sector capability.


Literacy and numeracy skills are crucial for building a competitive, skilled and productive workforce. However, internationally benchmarked (OECD, 2006) research shows that more than a million New Zealand adults have  less than optimal literacy skills (43 per cent) and numeracy skills (51 per cent) for a knowledge-based economy. New Zealand’s low levels of literacy and numeracy have been identified as contributing to our relatively low productivity.

Improving adult literacy and numeracy underpins several of the Government’s Better Public Services results and is a priority in the Tertiary Education Strategy 2014 – 2019. The TEC has an implementation strategy which sets out how the TEC will work with and across the tertiary sector, industry, government, iwi and the community to help strengthen and raise the literacy and numeracy skills of adults.  The strategy was released in late 2012 and has been developed in consultation with sector stakeholders and other government agencies. The strategy will be refreshed in 2015.

The TEC has developed and supports a range of initiatives to help raise adult literacy and numeracy skills for a knowledge-based economy. These include developing high-quality resources to support educators, providing opportunities for learning through funding and programmes, and introducing professional development for the tertiary workforce.

Below are some of ways the TEC works to improve adult literacy and numeracy outcomes.

Dedicated literacy and numeracy funds

Intensive Literacy and Numeracy Fund

This fund supports the intensive provision of quality fees-free literacy, language and numeracy learning opportunities for learners with low-level literacy and numeracy skills.

Intensive Literacy and Numeracy – Targeted English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Fund

This fund supports fees-free ESOL programmes for adult refugees and migrants who are pre-literate learners or learners who have very low levels of English language and literacy. Pre-literate learners are those whose first language has no written form and who need exposure to the purposes and uses of literacy.

Workplace Literacy and Numeracy

This fund supports training programmes that are delivered within the context of workplace learning. The programmes are offered in two ways:

  1. TEO led – tertiary providers who either work with a specific workplace to develop and implement a literacy and numeracy programme tailored to that workplace, or work with self-referred employees on a one-to-one basis or in small groups of up to five employees (from one or more employers).
  2. Employer led – employers are directly funded to deliver programmes to their eligible staff.

Adult Literacy Educator (ALE) Fund

This fund provides support for educators studying for qualifications in teaching adult literacy and numeracy. The purpose of ALE funding is to build the capability of educators and trainers to effectively teach adult literacy and numeracy.

Additional funding support

Tertiary education organisation funding

The TEC funds foundation learning through a number of funding sources, including the Student Achievement Component (SAC) levels 1 to 3, Youth Guarantee, Adult and Community Education, and Gateway. One of the key purposes of foundation learning is to raise the literacy and numeracy skills of learners.

The TEC requires all education funded through SAC at levels 1 to 3 and Youth Guarantee to have embedded literacy and numeracy content and for learners to be assessed using the Assessment Tool.

Industry Training Fund

Industry training organisations (ITOs) must have embedded literacy and numeracy as part of their training programmes at levels 1 to 3 on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework. This includes literacy and numeracy support through New Zealand Apprenticeships if needed.

Supporting the sector and building capability

National Centre of Literacy and Numeracy for Adults

The National Centre of Literacy and Numeracy for Adults (National Centre) is funded by the TEC to lead a national programme of professional development and educational services to improve the effectiveness of providers and educators.

The National Centre’s activities include face-to-face and online professional development, literacy and numeracy resources and workshops, and providing advisory and whole-of-organisation capability support to tertiary education providers.

Skills Highway

The TEC manages the Skills Highway programme to identify best practice and assist employers with developing and maintaining workplace literacy and numeracy programmes.

Literacy and Numeracy for Adults Assessment Tool (Assessment Tool)

The Assessment Tool is an online adaptive tool that provides reliable information on the reading, writing and numeracy skills of adults. Use of the Assessment Tool is a funding condition for tertiary education organisations receiving foundation education funding through the TEC.

Learning Progressions

Learning Progressions, a theoretical framework of literacy and numeracy skills, details competencies in adult literacy and numeracy.  This includes advice and information on what adult learners know and can do at successive points as they develop their skills.

Pathways Awarua

This online self-directed literacy and numeracy learning resource is made up of pathways of modules for learners to complete at their own pace, based on competencies set out by the Learning Progressions. It can be used as a digital learning tool and as a teaching supplement.

National literacy and numeracy qualifications for educators

The TEC has worked with New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) and the sector to create qualification pathways for literacy and numeracy educators. These qualifications range from certificates to masters’ degrees.

Check individual funds to see if there are any qualification requirements for educators.

Author: Graeme Smith

Education, technology, design. Also making cool stuff...

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