Eligibility – Search and Rescue

Eligibility – Search and Rescue

Last updated 6 July 2023
Last updated 6 July 2023

This page sets out the eligibility criteria for courses funded through the Search and Rescue Fund.

 Programme eligibility

Programme eligibility conditions are specified in the Memorandum of Understanding between the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) and the Ministry of Transport.

Learner eligibility

The learner must be:

  • a Domestic Student; and
  • nominated to undertake the search and rescue training by New Zealand Search and Rescue (NZSAR), or by a search and rescue organisation approved by NZSAR.

Verification of learner identity

When a learner enrols for the first time, and if they are enrolled in a programme with an equivalent full-time student (EFTS) value greater than 0.03, then a Community Education Provider must verify the learner’s identity. This complies with the reporting requirements under clause 13 of Schedule 18 of the Education and Training Act 2020

Once you have verified the learner’s identity, you can then check if they are eligible to be a valid domestic enrolment.

For subsequent enrolments in consecutive years, we don’t need you to re-verify the learner’s identity. However, assess your level of risk around identity verification and, if appropriate, develop a policy on when to re-verify.

We recommend that you become familiar with the Department of Internal Affairs' Identification Management Standards.

Verification of learner eligibility

You must use one of these methods to verify each learner’s eligibility to enrol in Search and Rescue funded training. 

Type of student

Verification method

New Zealand citizen

The Community Education Provider must:

(a) confirm the student's citizenship status using the student’s National Student Number (NSN), or

(b) receive an assertion through RealMe® that the student was born in New Zealand (before 2005), or

(c) sight an original or certified copy of one or more of these documents:

(i) a New Zealand birth certificate, or

(ii) a New Zealand passport, or

(iii) a New Zealand certificate of citizenship.

(d) If a student is unable to obtain a birth certificate, contact us to confirm that a whakapapa statement signed by both the student and a kaumātua is acceptable evidence of citizenship.

New Zealand resident

You must sight an original or certified copy of one or more of these documents:

(a) a passport with a current residence class visa (a passport with a visa label), or

(b) a passport, and letter or email, confirming current  residence class visa (label-less visa, followed by confirmation with Immigration New Zealand, where appropriate), or

(c) a certificate of identity from Immigration New Zealand if the student is a refugee.

Sighting original or certified copies is vital

Where you need to sight either an original or a certified copy of a document:

  • an original means the original hard copy
  • a certified copy means a photocopy, scan or photograph that has been endorsed as a true copy of the original.

A certified copy must:

  • be certified by an official of the issuing authority or a person authorised by law in New Zealand to certify documents, such as a Justice of the Peace, a lawyer, or a court official (Court Registrar or Deputy Registrar), and
  • have the official's signature on each page, with their name and title shown clearly below their signature.

In all instances, you are responsible for verifying the learner’s identity and eligibility.