About us

The Skills Highway workplace literacy and numeracy programme is funded by the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC). Improving literacy and numeracy can unlock productivity, kick-start educational success, and deliver far-reaching benefits to workers, their families and workplaces.

Skills Highway initiatives include:

  • developing good practice strategies for introducing and maintaining literacy and numeracy programmes in the workplace
  • acknowledging employers who have successfully introduced workplace literacy and numeracy training through the Skills Highway Award 
  • promoting the Workplace Literacy and Numeracy Fund to employers.

Why are literacy and numeracy skills important?

Literacy and numeracy skills are crucial for building a competitive, skilled and productive workforce.

Internationally benchmarked (OECD, 2014) research shows that more than a million New Zealand adults have less than optimal literacy skills (43 percent) and numeracy skills (51 percent) for a knowledge-based economy. New Zealand’s low levels of literacy and numeracy have been identified as contributing to our relatively low productivity.

Improving adult literacy and numeracy is a priority in the Tertiary Education Strategy 2014 – 2019. Skills Highway is just one part of the Government’s effort to improve New Zealand’s adult literacy and numeracy rates. It has been developed to help your organisation on its journey to building a productive, literate and numerate workforce.


Adult literacy and numeracy - TEC website

Tertiary Education Strategy - Ministry of Education website