Access to Support




RTLB and MOE Learning Support

Shared Protocols


The Parties
Te Whiri Kōkō RTLB Cluster 26
Ministry of Education (MOE: Learning Support) Palmerston North and Otaki The agreement covers two MOE regions (Manawatu, Whanganui, Taranaki and Wellington)


Te Whiri Kōkō Cluster
Resource Teachers: Learning and Behaviour (RTLB) are an itinerant service that supports teachers and their students in order to improve outcomes for Year 1 -10 students with learning and or behavioural difficulties.
Te Whiri Kōkō Cluster has 38 full-time RTLB working across the Tararua, Palmerston North (city and rural) Horowhenua, Otaki and Kapiti regions. There is also a Cluster Manager and a Cluster Manager Personal Assistant based at Freyberg High School, the Lead School.


MOE: Learning Support

The MOE team comprises of Special Education Advisors, Psychologists, Early Intervention Teachers and Speech Language Therapists, Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, and Advisors on Deaf Children. The team is managed by Service Managers locally and at the regional level, Managers of Learning Support.
Working Together Te Whiri Kōkō Cluster and MOE: Learning Support are committed to work together under an umbrella of trust and mutual respect. These values will serve to underpin the professional roles and relationships needed to ensure a seamless provision of services to students with learning support needs, their families/whanau and the schools they attend. These protocols are intended to guide collaboration which is understood to be a partnership in which each party contributes time, resources, information and professional knowledge as needed. The expectation for this is based on equity and the best outcomes for students.


Key Principles
•All additional learning support is child centred, simple to access, timely, early and uninterrupted according to the agreed goals.

•Collaboration between professionals, educators, students, parents and whānau underpins the approach to everything we do.

•We use an approach that focuses us on doing what it takes to get it right for the student.

•MOE: Learning Support Service Managers, Education Broker for the Childrens’ Team, RTLB, Practice Leaders and Cluster Manager all have access to the information on Schoolgate for Requests for Support and funding applications so they can make sound, timely decisions.

•Child centred; the people closest to the child make the decisions.

•Single point of contact; there is no wrong door for contact and once the case is allocated the services collaborate to ensure there is a key person for teachers and parents to contact.

•Liaison with the schools via RTLB Liaison and consultation between the services helps to identify needs early.

•Requests for support are simple to follow and seamless between services.

•Decisions are made quickly and RTLB and MOE have a commitment to ensuring all students get support when they need it (no waiting list).

•Transitions at key transition points are managed well including transitions between RTLB and MOE: Learning Support.

•Co-working is encouraged between both agencies when possible, sharing information, making programmes simpler for teachers and utilising funding in the best way possible.

•Professionals collaborate and follow a multi-disciplinary approach for students presenting with high needs.

•Educators are supported to teach diverse learners.

•Communities of Learning/Kāhui Ako are supported.

•Outcomes data is collected.


The Seamless Pathway

Response to Requests for Support (RFS) from Schools (also refer to flowchart)

•Pre-Request for Support: Each school has a Liaison RTLB who collaborates with the school on learning support. Advice and guidance is offered and resources considered. Students with additional needs are discussed at the regular Liaison Meetings.

•After discussion, if the school requires additional support for a student, group of students, whole school or groups of schools for learning and /or behaviour, the RFS is to be made using the Te Whiri Kōkō Cluster Schoolgate database.

•Each school has its own log in for Schoolgate and has been trained in using it.

•The Service Managers and the Education Broker for Childrens’ Team also have their own log in and have been trained in using it.

•Joint consent is obtained from parents/whanau for any individual student and must be uploaded onto the RFS. This consent covers all MOE and RTLB support services under the seamless pathway. Group referrals to RTLB do not require parental consent in written form, however it is expected parents are aware of the child’s involvement in the group receiving additional support. •Schools inform the Liaison RTLB that the RFS is completed. The RTLB completes the prioritisation level and submits the request. These are received at any time and are

submitted by 4 pm on the Wednesday in Weeks 2, 5, 8. Schools are made aware of the dates.
•RFS are viewed as they come in via a viewing tab called To Be Allocated (TBA). RTLB and MOE view these. This provides the opportunity for staff to contribute further information they may have regarding a referral before it is allocated.
•RTLB indicate if they have the skill and capacity to pick up the cases and an allocation consultation process begins between the RTLB and the Practice Leaders. The Practice Leaders and Service Managers consult about the new RFS and decide what service is best to be involved. This may be a) RTLB only b) RTLB and MOE: Learning Support co-working c) MOE: Learning Support only.
•The finalisation of the allocations are made in Team Meetings in Weeks 3, 6, 9 and is recorded on Schoolgate.
•Schools are notified of the outcome and who is allocated via Schoolgate.
•The allocated staff make contact with the family/whanau within a week.
•RTLB follow the Practice Sequence and record all their casework on Schoolgate.
•MOE: Learning Support staff use their own database to record casework.

Transfer of Support from RTLB to MOE: Learning Support
•When a current RTLB case appears to need additional support and it is considered support from MOE: Learning Support would be beneficial, then the case can be tabled for discussion at the Practice Leader and Service Manager three weekly meeting. All casework information is on Schoolgate.
•The parents/whanau will be informed by the RTLB of the impending discussion and possible change of additional service provider or a transfer. Consent will be gained.
•A decision will be made about what service and who is best to support the student. This may be a) remain with RTLB b) co-worked RTLB and MOE: Learning Support
c) MOE: Learning Support only.
The school and parents will be notified of the change.
•Information will be shared from the Schoolgate casefile and a transition process would be actioned if there is a change.

Transfer of Support from MOE: Learning Support to RTLB
•Should a current MOE: Learning Support student receiving support reach a level where it would be advantageous for some level of service to continue, and the school is in agreement, the caseworker will discuss with their Service Manager and this would be tabled
“for discussion” at the Practice Leader and Service Manager three weekly meetings for possible transfer to RTLB. A record of the discussions are recorded in Schoolgate.
•The parent/whanau and school will be informed by the caseworker of the impending discussion and possible change or additional service provider.
•The caseworker will prepare a summary of what has happened, with current data and what has been tried to date. A decision will be made around where the case is best placed and a referral will be generated using a new RFS. Relevant information is shared.
•A decision will be made about what service and who is best to support the student. This may be a) RTLB only b) co-worked RTLB and MOE: Learning Support c) MOE: Learning Support only.
The school and parents will be notified of the change.
•Information will be shared from the Schoolgate casefile and a transition process would be actioned if there is a change.

Transition for Students Re-Entering School after Exclusion
•Discussions may be held between the relevant people including: RTLB, MOE: Learning Support staff, Health School, NGO etc to support a transition back into school after exclusion and work out which service/s could be involved.

Early Intervention Transitions
•As soon as the Early Intervention (EI) worker becomes aware that one of their students may need ongoing support at school, they will discuss this with their Service Manager.
•After consultation and if the parent consents, the Service Manager will complete an EI ‘Flag’ on Schoolgate in the MOE School casefile by making a RFS but this will remain “incomplete”. The student will be discussed at the three weekly Service Manager, Practice Leader meeting.
•If transition meetings are taking place around the entry of this student to their school, the Liaison RTLB may be invited to attend. The student will remain on the MOE: Learning Support role during the transition phase as RTLB do not work with students at the pre-school level.
•If the decision has been made that the student will need on-going support and a school has been decided and agrees to have RTLB support, consent is gained from the parents/whanau. The RFS is accepted and moved to the student’s school.