Performance Consequences Framework

The Performance Consequences Framework is a process that assists us to define performance expectations and manage individual tertiary education organisation (TEO) performance. It also ensures confidence in our decisions about how we manage differing levels of performance.

The following information is available about the framework, and the links between:


Investment Plans

The Plan environment is based on the expectation that TEOs[1] will manage their own performance in order to deliver on Plan commitments. It is based on a ‘no surprises’ relationship between TEOs and TEC, whereby TEOs notify us of any performance issues as soon as they become aware of them. We in turn, reflect this openness and transparency in our relationships with TEOs.

We monitor TEOs’ performance and use this information to address under-performance during the Investment Plan (Plan) period and also to inform future funding decisions, taking both good and poor performance into account.

The Framework sets out both the process, and the actions we may take, in response to TEO performance for funding received under section 159YA of the Education Act 1989.

Key performance areas we monitor include:

  • delivery volume against an agreed fund allocation 
  • delivery against an agreed Mix of Provision 
  • deliverables related to each fund
  • compliance with legislation and regulatory frameworks 
  • meeting conditions set out in the relevant Funding Mechanisms, or any specific funding conditions set by TEC at the time funding approval is given 
  • delivery against performance commitments agreed in the Plan, including any minimum achievement levels  
  • achievement of Performance-linked funding thresholds.

Performance consequences

For performance that is exceeding expectations, the TEC may:

  • engage with the TEO less frequently due to a high trust relationship 
  • soften monitoring requirements 
  • give preference to approaching the TEO when discretionary funding opportunities arise.

For performance that is not meeting expectations, the TEC may:

  • increase the frequency and intensity of engagement 
  • recover funding 
  • amend conditions on funding
  • impose new conditions on funding on subsequent Plan funding approval
  • require a TEO to review its Plan with a view to amending or replacing it
  • make a significant amendment to the Plan under section 159YM of the Education Act 1989 
  • suspend funding 
  • revoke funding
  • consider past performance in future funding allocations (including any discretionary funding for which a TEO may apply).


The following points describe the high-level process that the TEC will follow when it applies the Framework to TEO under-performance.

  • the TEC becomes aware of under-performance
  • the TEC contacts the TEO to discuss the under-performance
  • the TEO has the opportunity to respond, which may include the provision of further information or evidence
  • any additional information or evidence is considered by the TEC
  • the TEC makes a decision regarding the most appropriate performance consequence(s) to be applied. The affected TEO will be given an opportunity to respond to the decision before it is finalised.

Note: this process does not apply for performance-linked funding as this is a formulaic calculation based on past performance.


Performance-linked funding

Performance-linked funding made up to 5% of a TEO’s total SAC funding at any of the four grouped qualifications levels will be at risk on an annual basis irrespective of any over-delivery that may occur.

See the Performance-linked funding page for more information.


Evaluations and review

External Evaluation and Review (EER) is an NZQA process which creates judgements about performance and capability for all TEOs, excluding universities. Judgements are expressed as statements of confidence in Educational Performance and Capability in Self Assessment.

Statements of confidence are reported at one of the following four levels:

  • Highly Confident
  • Confident
  • Not Yet Confident
  • Not Confident

The EER provider category status informs how the TEC applies performance consequences. Category 4 status indicates a level of “Not Confident” in either Educational Performance or Capability in Self-Assessment. The TEC will apply performance consequences to any TEOs that retain Category 4 status over the course of two consecutive EERs. Potential consequences include suspension of funding and / or revocation of funding approval.


Interventions framework

The Interventions Framework for tertiary education institutions may also trigger use of the Performance Consequences Framework. It is possible for the Performance Consequences Framework to trigger use of the Interventions Framework. Both may be used concurrently.

  • [1]

    Tertiary education organisation (TEO)

  • Last changed: 2 April 2015
  • Last verified: 2 April 2015