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How the programme works

Schools, kura, and creative(s) work together to plan a project and then submit a joint proposal (application). If your application is successful, schools and kura will work with the creative to deliver the creative experience for students and ākonga. The project must run for between 8 and 20 weeks.

While the application is a joint one, the school or kura will be the ‘lead applicant’. This means the school will submit the application and have overall responsibility for delivering the project.

How creatives will be involved

To participate in a Creatives in Schools project, you must be a practising professional artist or creative practitioner with a track record of experience and success. Alternatively, you can undertake a project in partnership with another creative with a strong track record.

A track record of experience and success means you have:

  • achieved recognition from peers or experts, OR
  • achieved a degree of critical success, OR
  • previously delivered a successful project with a school or kura, OR
  • undergone specialist training or have significant practical experience.

If you already have a relationship with a school or kura, you can get in touch with them to see if they would like to work with you to put together a joint application. They can also help you with the  expression of interest . (This is not mandatory to submit.)

If you don’t have a relationship with a school or kura, you can submit an expression of interest online  here . The information you provide will be made available to schools and kura as a brief, anonymous profile on the  Arts Online website.  A school or kura may then request your contact details from the Ministry of Education and get in touch with you to put together a joint application.

Application selection criteria

Your joint application will be reviewed by an assessment panel with representatives from the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Culture and Heritage, Creative New Zealand, and independent creative practitioners.

To be accepted as a Creatives in Schools project, your application must deliver on strategic group outcomes and demonstrate:

  • a clear focus on improving the wellbeing of your students and ākonga
  • a strong focus on the key competencies of The New Zealand Curriculum or Ngā Uara me Ngā Waiaro of Te Marautanga o Aotearoa
  • how the project supports local curriculum/marau ā-kura planning and your programme for the arts/ngā toi learning area
  • your capability and capacity to ensure strong support for the project
  • how the project connects with and is valued by whānau and the community.

Four strategic groups of outcomes

Projects supported through Creatives in Schools must deliver outcomes for students/ākonga, teachers/kaiako, family/whānau and creative practitioners. A strong project will deliver on all four.

1: Outcomes for students and ākonga

As a result of participating in the project, students and ākonga will:

  • have their mental wellbeing supported through
    • the opportunity to express themselves creatively
    • a sense of personal achievement and fulfilment from their creative experience
  • develop key competencies:
    • thinking
    • using language, symbols, and texts
    • managing self
    • relating to others
    • participating and contributing
  • be better informed and engaged with career opportunities and pathways in the arts and creative industries.

2: Outcomes for teachers, kaiako, schools and kura

As a result of participating in the project, teachers, kaiako, schools, and kura will:

  • be more confident in designing teaching and learning projects that engage student and ākonga creativity, across the learning areas of the curriculum
  • build or strengthen productive partnerships with parents, whānau, and communities.

3: Outcomes for parents and whānau

As a result of the project, parents and whānau will:

  • have opportunities for active participation and planning in student and ākonga creative learning experiences
  • become more supportive of creative pathways for students and ākonga.

4: Outcomes for artists and creative practitioners

As a result of participating in the project, artists and creative practitioners will:

  • develop personally and professionally as creative practitioners by engaging with students, teachers, parents, families, and whānau
  • have a more sustainable career and a portfolio that reflects their specialist creative expertise.

Breakdown of funding

Schools and creatives can jointly apply for up to $17,000 per project. The table below shows the funding allocation.

Allowance per project Description

Total remuneration for creative practitioner/s is $10,000. This covers 100 contact hours, including contact time with students and planning time with teachers. We expect a minimum of 85 contact hours with students. It also covers any additional time that the creative professional or professionals may spend:

  • on their own planning and preparation
  • applying for the project
  • participating in induction and training for the project
  • on final project report preparation.

Where more than one creative practitioner is involved in the project this fee can be split between the creatives, however the number of creative/student contact hours should still total a minimum of 85. For example, two creatives delivering 50 contact hours each will total 100 creative/student hours with each creative receiving $5,000.

Up to $4,000 Reimbursement for the school(s) or kura, covering planning and liaison with the creative, teacher and kaiako release time, and monitoring and reporting on the project.
Up to $3,000 Reimbursement for the school(s) or kura for project materials and (if applicable) travel costs.


If your project exceeds $17,000 funding, it is assumed your school will cover any additional amount.

Creatives in Schools schedule

Funding will allow more than 550 projects to take place in New Zealand schools and kura from 2020 to 2023. The table below shows the anticipated number of projects to be funded over the four-year programme.

Calendar year

Terms 1–4

2020 2021 2022  2023
Expected number of projects







Up to 200
Round 1 2 3 4

Police vetting

Note that all professional artists and creative practitioners who participate in Creatives in Schools must undergo a Police Vetting Check . The school or kura you are working with will organise the check as part of the application process and ensure your police vetting is completed before the project commences. If you do not ‘pass’ the vetting, your profile will be removed from Arts Online (if you are selected from our website), and you won’t be able to participate in that project.

For further information, contact CreativesinSchools@education.govt.nz


Page last updated: 16 June 2022
Watch this space for future updates.

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