Adult and Community Education

ACE in schools

Adult and Community Education (ACE) funding for schools primarily focuses on provision for:

  • Literacy, digital literacy, and/or numeracy
  • English language, including English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)
  • New Zealand Sign Language, or
  • Te Reo Māori.

See eligibility requirements for a school to receive ACE funding.


Learner priorities

Schools providing ACE programmes need to prioritise learners with the highest need. The TEC expects that at least 50% of learners receiving ACE provision through a school will:

  • identify as having English language needs
  • have low or no formal qualifications, or
  • identify as Māori or Pasifika.

See eligibility requirements for a learner to be enrolled in a programme that receives ACE funding. 


Investment Plans

The TEC funds ACE in schools through Investment Plans.

Each school must have an approved Investment Plan that identifies how its funded ACE courses will address the needs of target learner groups and priorities for ACE in schools.


Funding rate

The TEC allocates ACE funding to schools at a fixed hourly rate of $7.27 per hour. This allows flexibility for the school to allocate funds by course and allow duration to vary according to content and learner needs. The minimum course duration is six hours.



The TEC pays funding for ACE provision in monthly instalments on the first banking day of each month. Payment amounts are equal from January to June, and equal from July to December.


Funding recoveries

Recovery of unused funding will be based on the volume of delivery (enrolments) reported by the school in its ACE in Schools Annual Report. The volume of delivery is calculated as the number of learners enrolled multiplied by the course duration (in hours). Where a school has not delivered funded hours the TEC will recover the unused funding at the hourly rate of $7.27.

Attendance will not be considered in the recovery calculation but it will be considered against the performance indicators to inform future funding decisions.

For example:

A 10-hour course for a planned number of 12 learners is funded for $872.40.

The school only enrols 10 learners at $727.00.

The difference of $145.40 will be recovered.

However, hours can be transferred in-year to other courses or to new courses.

Where any course has a higher number of enrolments than signalled in the Investment Plan these will be offset against lower enrolments in other courses. See Condition ACE018



All schools that receive ACE funding will be monitored against the key performance indicators agreed through the Investment Plan.

The TEC monitors ACE delivered by schools against the following performance indicators:

  • course completion rates – learners  attend on average at least 80 percent of tuition time across funded courses
  • priority learner groups – a minimum of 50 percent of learners enrolled in the school's funded ACE programme:

      -  identify as having English language needs or

      -  have low or no formal qualifications, or

      -  identify as Māori or Pasifika.



We require schools receiving ACE funding to report annually.

Each school must submit to us a completed ACE in Schools annual report template. This form is to be submitted using Workspace 2 within 15 working days of completion of the 1 January–31 December ACE programme.

The school must report on each ACE activity approved through its Investment Plan, including providing the requested demographic data about learners. The data must include the activities that were approved for delivery through the funding agreement process (before the delivery took place) plus any substitute activities. The report template requires the following collated data:

  • number of learners and hours of delivery (contracted and delivered)
  • hours of learner attendance
  • information on subcontracted delivery

  • region of delivery

  • gender of learners

  • ethnicity of learners

  • English language status of learners

  • number of learners with low or no qualifications

  • number of migrants

  • number of refugees

  • age of learners.

For more information see Condition ACE001.

Individual learner data

Schools need to collect and retain raw data on each learner, enrolled in each course, for audit purposes. The information does not need to be submitted to the TEC.

  • Last changed: 2 March 2016
  • Last verified: 2 March 2016