Self-review and attestation - international Code

Education providers that are signatories of the Education (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016 (the international Code) must:

  • carry out an annual self-review of how they are meeting the international Code outcomes and processes
  • document the self-review for their own records and external evaluation and review
  • attest annually to NZQA that they have undertaken this self-review. This applies even if an education organisation does not have international students currently enrolled

Self-review attestation due dates 2021

Schools - 1 December 2021

The existing international Code requirements have been retained for schools in a new Code which has now been issued by the Ministry of Education (MoE) and effective from 1 January 2022. International Code self-review and attestation will continue as usual for schools in 2021. Read more about the new Code.

The Code self-review attestation due date for schools is 1 December 2021. This applies even if a school does not have international students currently enrolled. 

In this case, the core question of self-review changes from “How well are we doing what we’re meant to be doing?” to “How ready are we to do what we’re meant to do?”

A fit-for-purpose self-review in this context will be a stocktake of practices. Consider:

  • What is your organisation doing?
  • What is your organisation not doing now but needs to be prepare for when students are able to return?
  • How much time does your organisation need to move from getting ready to doing?

Tertiary providers – no attestation requirement for 2021

For tertiary provider signatories, there are no further formal self-review attestation requirements for the current international Code.

Code requirements will change for tertiary provider signatories on 1 January 2022. You can read more about these on the Ministry of Education's website.

In the meantime, please continue with your ongoing internal processes of self-review, ensuring your compliance with current requirements.

We also recommend reviewing and updating your pastoral care processes in the second half of this year, to ensure they align with the new Code requirements.

What is self-review?

Self-review is an ongoing process to examine an organisation’s performance. It identifies strengths and weaknesses so the organisation can make actual, worthwhile improvements to their practice. 

It is a flexible, scalable, fit-for-purpose process and what self-review looks like in practice will depend on the size of the education organisation, the number of learners, and the overarching education purposes of the organisation. 

Self-review is a core component of quality assurance policies and criteria across all types of education organisations. This applies even if a education organisation does not have international students currently enrolled.

What is annual attestation?

Annual attestation is a declaration made each year to NZQA that self-review of performance against the Code/s is taking place. The attestation is made by completing an online attestation form signed by or authorised by the CEO/Principal/Chair of the Governing Board.

Resources for self-review

Self-review guidelines

NZQA has developed self-review guidelines for the interim domestic and international Codes (PDF, 385KB).

They guide tertiary education providers and international Code signatory schools through the process of undertaking self-review of pastoral care practice, and embedding self-review as an ongoing process in an organisation.

Self-review tool

NZQA has developed a self-review tool (DOCX, 260KB) for signatories to the Education (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016 (including 2019 amendments).

Signatories do not have to use it, but it contains evaluative questions to help signatories cover all areas of the Code and review their performance against it.

How do I undertake a self-review?

Organisations need to evaluate their performance by:

  • gathering data about their pastoral care of international students (e.g. processes, student support, surveys of students or others)
  • reflecting on the data (e.g. gaps, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities)
  • coming to conclusions about their own effectiveness
  • using the reflections to make ongoing improvements to pastoral care of international students.

Organisations need to keep a record of the self-review, including the evidence, for their own quality assurance purposes, as well as for external evaluation and review.

How do I submit a self-review attestation?

Tertiary organisation signatories and school signatories submit their attestations via online forms accessible through weblinks provided in email by NZQA.

Further information

For further information contact (for all education organisations).

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