Last updated 10 July 2024
Last updated 10 July 2024

Gateway funding enables secondary schools to give senior learners access to structured workplace learning integrated with school-based learning, which may align to one or more of the six Vocational Pathways.

Gateway is designed to support school learners’ transition into the workforce by offering them workplace learning while at secondary school. This must include a formal agreement (like an individualised learning plan) between the school, the learner and the workplace.

Learners are assessed in the workplace, and they can achieve credits on the New Zealand Qualifications and Credentials Framework (NZQCF) towards their National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA).

The workplace learning should include:

  • set unit standards for the learner to work towards and achieve, and
  • specific assessment methods.

School responsibilities

Schools must comply with all administrative requirements we specify, including reporting requirements in the Gateway Handbook (PDF 404 KB).

For the full list of responsibilities, see the Gateway funding conditions for the relevant year.

Vocational Pathways

Vocational Pathways provide ways for learners to achieve under the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) Level 2. 

Vocational Pathways

Including Vocational Pathways credits in NCEA allows learners to see how their Level 2 study leads to higher qualifications and career opportunities, and how their achievement will be valued in the workplace. The Vocational Pathways are a useful tool for planning programmes in line with what relevant industries recommend.

Schools should closely align their Gateway programme with one or more of the Vocational Pathways:

  • Construction and Infrastructure
  • Creative Industries
  • Manufacturing and Technology
  • Primary Industries
  • Services Industries
  • Social and Community Services.

For more information about Vocational Pathways, and tools to design programmes and help learners to plan their future careers, see Vocational Pathways – Ministry of Education.


Key resources for Gateway-funded programmes include:

Funding conditions

To receive Gateway Fund funding, schools must comply with the funding conditions.

For the full Fund requirements, see the Gateway funding conditions for the relevant year.


For the full eligibility requirements for organisations, programmes and learners, see the Gateway funding conditions for the relevant year.