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New ‘One hour a day’ education policy starts Term 1 2024 


On 19 December 2023 Education Minister Hon Erica Stanford confirmed how the Government’s ‘one hour a day’ policy for teaching reading, writing, and maths, as well as pānui, tuhituhi, and pāngarau, would be implemented. 

From Term 1 2024 schools and kura with ākonga in Years 0 – 8 will spend an average of at least an hour a day of reading, writing, and maths, or pānui, tuhituhi, and pāngarau.   

Most schools and kura will already be doing this teaching, so for many, there may not be a big change. It is the Government’s expectation that all Year 0 – 8 students should receive regular, purposeful instruction in these core areas to help them make progress with their learning.  

The new ‘one hour a day’ policy safeguards teaching time for those core skills, but it is also flexible and practical. Kaiako will continue using blocks of teaching time appropriate for young children, and learning will continue to be focused on ākonga needs across the curriculum.    

The policy sets an intention that kaiako deliberately and purposefully dedicate time to teaching these core skills. Teaching techniques like investigations, collaborative learning, and games will continue to be used so that ākonga stay engaged with their learning.  

We will provide practical guidance and supports for schools and kura who need them. These, along with detailed information about this policy, will be available on the Ministry’s website and online curriculum hub Tāhūrangi before the end of the year.  

Find out more 

Educators using Te Marautanga o Aotearoa can find more details at Pānui, tuhituhi me te pāngarau.

Educators using The New Zealand Curriculum can find more details at One hour a day.

Parents, caregivers, and whānau can find more information at One hour a day information for whānau.

Changes for specialist schools and kura with specified kura boards

Some schools and kura have been given additional time to implement these changes, in recognition of additional complexities that they might have to work through relating to timetabling and resourcing.   

Specialist schools with students in Years 0 – 8 will introduce this policy as soon as practicable, but have been given an extended, Term 1 2025 deadline.   

Kaupapa Māori kura run by a specified kura board are expected to begin implementation of this policy decision from 22 July 2024. This allows time for kura and the Ministry to discuss how the policy can be implemented in ways suitable to these settings.   

Specified kura board means the board of any of the following:   

  1. a Kura Kaupapa Māori   
  2. a designated character kura with a character that is hapū- or iwi-based or that affiliates with Ngā Kura ā Iwi o Aotearoa   
  3. a State integrated kura with a special character that is hapū- or iwi-based