Council Governance

Under the Education Act 1989, each tertiary education institution (TEI) council’s functions and duties include strategic planning and appointing its Vice Chancellor or Chief Executive. Council members other than the Chief Executive may receive fees.

A Ministerial statement of expectations for members of TEI councils clarifies the Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment’s expectations of all council members. Conflicts of interest must also be appropriately managed.

Governance arrangements for universities and wānanga

The governance arrangements for universities and wānanga were changed by the Education Amendment Act 2015. The deadline for having a new council in place is 30 June 2016. The changes include a reduction in the number of council members to between eight and 12 and the requirement for at least one Māori member. The Tertiary Education Commission has published guidance notes on the changes.

Governance arrangements for institutes of technology and polytechnics

Through changes made in 2009 to the Education Act 1989, council membership of each institute of technology and polytechnic was reduced to eight:

  • four members are appointed by the Minister
  • four members are appointed by the council in accordance with its own statutes.

Governance guide for council members of TEIs

The Governance Guide has been updated to reflect the changes to university and wānanga governance and a revised edition has now been published - see below. The guide includes the legislative framework for TEIs and their councils, key central agencies, the Tertiary Education Strategy, the Investment Plan process, and accountability and performance monitoring of TEIs.

2015 Changes to university and wānanga governance



Governance Guide for Council Members of Tertiary Education Institutions

  • Last changed: 30 July 2015
  • Last verified: 30 July 2015