Last updated 28 April 2022
Last updated 28 April 2022

This page sets out the eligibility criteria for the Youth Guarantee Fund. 

TEO eligibility

See Condition: Organisation eligibility for tertiary education organisation (TEO) eligibility requirements.

Programme eligibility

See the following conditions for programme (including course) eligibility requirements.

Note: “includes literacy and numeracy provision” in Condition: Minimum requirements under Programmes and qualifications means that the programme includes embedded literacy and numeracy provision. See also Condition: Literacy and Numeracy Assessment Tool.

For more information on Vocational Pathways and the list of standards in each pathway see www.youthguarantee.education.govt.nz

Youth Guarantee delivery must be face-to-face (for example, not delivered via distance learning or in a work-based setting). See Condition: Minimum requirements.

In addition, we expect Youth Guarantee:

  • programmes to be a minimum of 0.5 equivalent full-time students (EFTS) and contain at least one qualification, and
  • TEOs to not deliver more EFTS for qualifications at level 3 on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF) than has been agreed in the TEO’s mix of provision.

Note: From 2019 0.5 EFTS means:

  • 50 credits for a programme leading to a level 1 or 2 qualification, and
  • 60 credits for all other programmes.

To deliver qualifications linked to levels 1 to 3 on the NZQF, TEOs must have:

  • delivery site approval, consent to assess (if the delivery is NCEA only, using one or more of the Vocational Pathways), programme approval and/or accreditation from the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) (including programme approval for delivery of concurrent qualifications),
  • TEC approval for all delivery sites, qualifications (including concurrent qualifications), and courses in STEO, and
  • TEC agreement to deliver the qualifications by region and Territorial Authority in the TEO’s Plan mix of provision.

For information about NZQA programme approval and accreditation please see the NZQA website. TEOs can also contact their NZQA Sector Relationship Manager for further information regarding the approvals process.

Note: ‘subcontracting’ refers to a situation in which a TEO uses Youth Guarantee funding to pay another organisation to deliver teaching and/or assessment on its behalf. Also see Condition: Subcontracting and subcontracting.

Student eligibility

See Condition: Use of YG Fund Funding for eligible students.

Students must not be simultaneously enrolled in school and a Youth Guarantee funded qualification.

Students must not be enrolled in a Youth Guarantee funded qualification and also be enrolled in another TEC-funded programme at the same time, e.g. Intensive Literacy and Numeracy (ILN), a SAC-funded course, New Zealand Apprenticeship or Gateway.

A student that is eligible for ILN-funded programmes is not considered to have the necessary literacy and numeracy skills to be successful in a Youth Guarantee programme.

Limit on qualification prior achievement

See Condition: Recognised prior learning under Use of YG Fund Funding for eligible students. Qualification prior achievement limits are to ensure that government funding is targeted to students with no or low qualification prior achievement, and to enable students to pathway to higher level qualifications.

In practice this means:

  • a new enrolment is the first time that student has been enrolled in Youth Guarantee at that TEO, and
  • the TEO must verify individual students’ prior achievement before accepting them into the programme.

Level 1 and 2 programmes

In accordance with Condition: Student eligibility under Use of YG Fund Funding for eligible students, TEOs must ensure that students who already hold a qualification at level 1 or 2 on the NZQF comprise no more than 10% of new enrolments in a Youth Guarantee programme leading to award of a qualification at that level.

Student holds a qualification at …

And enrols in a qualification at …

Student will be included in the 10% prior achievement calculation in each year of delivery

Level 1

Level 1


Level 2

Level 2


Level 1

Level 2


A student enrolment in a subsequent Youth Guarantee qualification at the same TEO at any level is not considered a ‘new enrolment’.

Level 3 programmes

In accordance with Condition: Student eligibility under Use of YG Fund Funding for eligible students, a TEO must:

  • not enrol a student in a Youth Guarantee programme if the student has already achieved a qualification at Level 3 or above on the NZQF, and
  • prioritise enrolments in Youth Guarantee programmes that lead to award of a level 3 qualification on the NZQF to:
    • students who enrolled in Youth Guarantee with low prior achievement (no qualification or a level 1 qualification), and
    • students who have completed a level 1 or 2 qualification funded through Youth Guarantee.

Students may be re-enrolled unless they have turned 20

Students may be re-enrolled in Youth Guarantee, as long as they continue to meet the student eligibility conditions, including enrolling in no more than 1 EFTS provision per calendar year.

A student who turns 20 years old while enrolled is not eligible to re-enrol 

Some students may turn 20 years old during a programme they are enrolled in. These students remain eligible for Youth Guarantee for the courses required to complete their qualification.

Youth Guarantee funding is not available for 20 year old students to re-enrol in courses they did not successfully complete. Keep this in mind when you enrol a student who is close to turning 20 years of age, as any re-enrolments in qualifications or courses will need to be self-funded by the student or from SAC funding.