Equity funding

Equity funding

Last updated 30 November 2017
Last updated 11/30/2017

Equity funding supports tertiary education organisations (TEOs) to improve access, participation, and achievement of Māori and Pasifika learners at higher levels of the tertiary education system, as well as participation and achievement of students with disabilities.

One of the objectives of the Education Act 1989 is to encourage a tertiary education system that promotes equal access for all learners. Making education easier to access and improving the achievement of all learners is a core part of the tertiary sector’s contribution to the educational priorities outlined in the Tertiary Education Strategy. TEOs contribute to this by accommodating the diverse needs and aspirations of students of all ethnicities, genders, ages, abilities, and socio-economic backgrounds.

Equity funding for Māori and Pasifika students is designed to improve these learners’ participation in, and achievement at, higher levels of the tertiary education system  (level 5 and above on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework).

Equity funding for students with disabilities is designed to improve these learners’ participation in tertiary education, and achievement of qualifications.

Equity funding is a ‘top-up’ to Student Achievement Component (SAC) funding – to help cover the costs of providing extra support for these students. It is not intended to be the sole or primary source of funding used to support Māori or Pasifika students, or students with disabilities.


We expect all providers to offer the support required for learner success. Information can be found in:

You’ll also find practical information for improving student success at Ako Aotearoa's Resource Centre.