Please note: this page is not an official source of information for how schools, kura, kindergartens and early childhood centres should operate under the traffic light system. If any of the information on this page appears out of date or conflicts with official advice from the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Education, please follow the official guidance. 

If you are and NZEI Te Riu Roa member and you need advice on a specific matter, please contact our Member Support Centre. You can find their hours and contact details here.


Life at Red - Advice for Primary Teachers

Life at Red

Red traffic light settings allow education to continue with increased public health measures

NZEI Te Riu Roa supports these guidelines and encourages all members to do their part to keep students and staff safe.

If you are a member and have questions about your particular circumstances, please contact our Member Support Centre. You can find their hours and contact details here.

See below for what this means for you.

General steps to keep everyone safe

During red traffic light settings, staff and students will be on site for learning. The Ministry of Education and NZEI Te Riu Roa encourage you to do everything possible to keep yourself and your students safe, including:

  • Using the COVID-19 tracer app and/or recording where you have been
  • Wearing a mask while onsite and on public transit to/from work
  • Practice physical distancing
  • Get vaccinated
  • Stay home if you're feeling unwell


School staff must be double vaccinated and have received their booster within six months of their second dose to be in contact with students. This applies to all staff, support people and volunteers.

You cannot restrict student access based on vaccination status. 

Click here for more information about vaccination requirements for educators. 

Face masks

Facemasks are required in some situations while on site. In particular

  • Students and staff in Year 4 and above must wear a facemask while indoors or in close contact with others.
  • Facemasks are required on public transport for Ākonga aged 12 years and above.

Facemasks are encouraged along with physical distancing at all other times.

See the following links for more information: | Face masks for Schools and Kura

Self-isolation and hybrid teaching

As Omicron spreads in the community, there is an increasing likelihood that some of your staff or students will need to self isolate at home. It is a good idea to plan for this eventuality now so that you know what to do if it comes up.

You should work with your colleagues to make a plan, which may involve remote teaching options for students who need to remain at home.

See the below links for more information and get in touch if you need specific guidance or advice on your circumstances. | Isolation and Care

Ministry of Education | Advice for Schools connected to a confirmed case

Learn more about the following: