Count number of leave days

It is recommended that you count the leave days that will be deducted from the employee's leave balance before booking leave in Novopay Online or on a NOVO12 form, so that you can check if there is sufficient entitlement to cover the requested number of days.

Important:

Ensure you read the employee's employment agreement carefully for full details of their leave provisions.
See Employment agreements (EDUCATION.govt.nz website).
Contact NZ School Trustees Association if you need help to interpret employment agreement details.


The following terms are used in the rules on this page.

Term Definition
Absence period The period between the start date and the end date of the leave.
Free day A day that an employee does not normally work.
Work day

A week day that an employee would normally work.

A reference to consecutive work days relates to the days on which an employee would normally work. For example, if an employee normally works on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, then a Thursday and the following Monday are consecutive work days.

School vacation This is the period from the Monday of the first week of the vacation to the Sunday before the new term starts. The vacation period does not include the weekend at the end of the preceding school term.


The number of leave days booked, and therefore deducted from an employee's balance, depends on leave type, employee agreement provisions, days worked and timing of the leave.

Click on a link below for guidance on counting leave days.

Paid sick leave for full-time teachers and principals

Count the consecutive work days in the absence period.

  • If there are five or fewer consecutive work days in the absence period, do not count any weekend days.
  • If there are more than five consecutive work days in the absence period, count all of the calendar days, including weekends.

Do not count:

  • any school vacations or public holidays that fall in the absence period.

Examples

  • An absence from Wednesday to the following Wednesday (inclusive) is counted as eight days. This includes the intervening weekend because there are six consecutive work days.
  • An absence from Wednesday to Friday in the last week of term and Monday at the start of the next term is counted as four days. This does not include the weekend because there are fewer than five consecutive work days.
  • An absence from Wednesday to Friday in the last week of term and from Monday to Wednesday at the start of the following term is counted as eight days. This includes the last weekend of term because there are six consecutive work days.

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Paid sick leave for part-time teachers

For part-time teachers, deduct each day of absence as a full day from the teacher's entitlement.

Secondary Teachers' Collective Agreement

If a secondary part-time teacher normally works five days in a week, follow the rules for full-time teachers/principals above. Deduct each day of absence as a full day from the teacher's entitlement.

Follow the rules below for part-time secondary teachers who do not normally work five days in a week.

Count:

  • only the days that the teacher would normally work during the absence period.

Do not count:

  • any intervening free days, including weekends
  • school vacations or public holidays that fall in the absence period.

Primary Teachers' Collective Agreement

Count:

  • sick leave is to be debited on the basis of the days of absence where absence does not exceed five consecutive working days or;
  • on the basis of continuous days, including weekends, where the absence exceeds five consecutive working days;
  • no deduction will be made of absences of less than two hours.
Do not count:
  • school vacations or public holidays that fall in the absence period.

Area School Teachers' Collective Agreement

If an area school part-time teacher normally works five days in a week, follow the rules for full-time teachers/principals above. Deduct each day of absence as a full day from the teacher's entitlement.

Follow the rules below for part-time area teachers who do not normally work five days in a week.

Count:

  • only the days that the teacher would normally work during the absence period.

Do not count:

  • days they would not normally work, including weekends
  • school vacations or public holidays that fall in the absence period.

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Paid sick leave for non-teaching staff

Count the days the employee would normally work during the absence period. Do not count public holidays. Do not count school vacations for term-time only employees.

For part-time employees, deduct each day of absence as a full day from their entitlement.

Paid annual leave for non-teaching staff

Annual leave entitlements for non-teachers are expressed in weeks rather than days in the employment agreements. This means that, although you book leave in the Novopay payroll system as days or half days, it is necessary to think in terms of weeks when counting leave days.

Employee works five days per week

If the employee normally works five days per week, count all the employee's normal work days that fall in the absence period. Do not count public holidays. Do not count school vacations for term-time only employees.

Employee works fewer than five days per week

  • If the employee works fewer than five days per week, and they take all of their normal work days as annual leave, book five days of leave, so that a week is deducted from their annual leave entitlement.
    For example, if an employee normally works two days per week, and they take both days as annual leave, book this as five days (one week) of leave.
  • If the employee works fewer than five days per week, and they take only some of these days as annual leave, count only the employee's normal work days that fall in the absence period.

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Unpaid leave types for full-time teachers

Count the consecutive work days that the teacher would normally work in the absence period.

  • If there are five or fewer consecutive work days in the absence period, count only the employee's normal work days. Do not count any public holidays, weekends or school vacations.
  • If there are more than five consecutive work days in the absence period, count all days in the absence period, including weekends and public holidays. Do not count school vacations.

Unpaid leave types for part-time teachers

Employee works five days per week

Count all the work days that fall in the absence period. Do not count school vacations or public holidays. If the total number of days counted is more than five, add the intervening weekends and public holidays.

Employee works fewer than five days per week

If a part-time teacher normally works fewer than five days per week, do one of the following:

  • If the absence is for a continuous period of more than one calendar week, count all of the calendar days, including weekends and public holidays.
  • If the absence is for a continuous period of one calendar week or less, count only the teacher's normal work days.

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Unpaid leave types for non-teaching staff

Employee works five days per week

If the employee normally works five days per week, count all the employee's normal work days that fall in the absence period. Do not count school vacations for term-time only employees.

Employee works fewer than five days per week

  • If the employee works fewer than five days per week, and they take all of their normal work days as unpaid leave, book a full week of leave.
    For example, if an employee normally works two days per week, and they take both days as unpaid leave, book this as five days (one week) of leave.
  • If the employee works fewer than five days per week, and they take only some of these days as unpaid leave, count only the employee's normal work days that fall in the absence period.

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Related links

How to:

A-Z of payroll:

EDUCATION.govt.nz website:

Other websites:

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