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System of support background

The system of support sits within the New Zealand education system - its goal is to improve outcomes for all students. 

An integrated system of support for learners maps the relationship between assets, tools, processes, and people.

This map is designed to:

  • centre students and their relationship with others, and with what is worthwhile learning in their educational endeavour
  • indicate the materials, tools, and assets that people use everyday in schools and, in particular, the curriculum, strategies for equity, and BES of what works, why, and how
  • highlight the three tiers of learning support for students, with the focus on effective classroom experiences
  • show how the layers of system are connected to support improved outcomes
  • illustrate that the inquiry and knowledge-building cycle is the process common to bringing about cumulative improvement
  • indicate the supplementary supports for schools – triggered by school self-review data and national achievement data (see the cycles). Some are direct support for learners and others are direct supports for teachers, leaders, BoT, and family/whānau, and communities - both supplement the school focus on improvement
  • demonstrate that supplementary supports build the school’s knowledge and capability in a cumulative way that drives continuous improvement.


The following two tools support professional discussion:

System of support diagram.

Integrated system of support 

System of support map is an A3 resource with the concept on one side and notes on the other. This system map connects the everyday resources and tools available to learners, teachers, leaders, and schools.

PDF icon. An integrated system of support (PDF, 2 MB)

Using a quality improvement framework.

Quality improvement framework

A presentation that takes you through the purpose, rationale, and structure of the integrated system of support for learners. 

PDF icon. Using a quality improvement framework (PDF, 5 MB)

Updated on: 02 May 2013