Mathematics For A Lifetime is an award-winning charitable trust which strives to expand the availability of professional maths tutoring to children and youth who need it most, but may be least able to afford it.

When individuals do better, communities do too.

The essential skills of reasoning and problem solving learned in maths class are transferable to almost every area of our lives, no matter which career path we may follow. An improved understanding of maths equals better grades, a better chance of acceptance to tertiary education or a vocational course, a better job and even better management of personal finances as adults. When individuals do better, communities do too.

Learning maths is like building a house - if your foundation isn’t strong, there’s little chance of the rest of your work turning out well. When young people don’t have the foundation solidly in place they may struggle, experiencing anxiety or embarrassment which can lead to avoidance and even depression. Tutoring helps to reinforce the foundation, resulting in better performance, increased confidence and
improved self-belief.

Our Board

Jean McKenzie
Chairperson and Founder

My vision is to advance mathematics education for children and young people within New Zealand, creating lifelong opportunities and increasing their choices, for a brighter future.

Teachers are challenged daily with class sizes and curriculum pressures. Anxiety and difficulties with maths are very real for so many students and tutoring can make a huge difference. I believe in communities coming together to help our children and young people and, through the work of Mathematics For A Lifetime, we can achieve this.

Maria Heslop | Board member

I joined MFAL as children and their education are super important to me.  Coming from an investment adviser background and having a husband as a builder I realise that maths is an important foundatiRead more

Ben van Rooy | Board member

I believe every person should have the opportunity to learn maths as it is an essential skill that is needed in our personal and professional lives. Mathematics for a Lifetime provides that veryRead more

Jay Ballantyne - Board Member

I am passionate about helping to break down the barriers that prevent young kiwis from achieving their full potential in life. By teaching kids the skills required to succeed and grow, they gainRead more

Shelley Greer - Board Member

Mathematics is such an integral part of all of our lives. Helping children and young adults improve their maths skills builds their confidence not only in maths but in other areas of learning andRead more

Rochelle Old - Secretary

I am a mother of 3 children and have seen firsthand how having a better understanding of maths has created confidence, not only in school but in life. There are many children who struggle with mathsRead more

Susan Brennan - Treasurer

I believe education is fundamental for supporting future career options with mathematics an integral part of all careers.I am personally saddened to see students limiting their future by thinkingRead more

Jean McKenzie | Chair

My vision is to advance mathematics education for children and young people within New Zealand, creating lifelong opportunities and increasing their choices, for a brighter future. Teachers areRead more

100% of donations go directly to help kids

Due to overheads being covered by a generous sponsor, 100% of all donations go directly towards the cost of tuition for kids who need it.

Frequently Asked Questions

How are students selected for this opportunity?

There are currently two ways that students can be selected:
Individual application using the application form available online
Collaboration with one or all of the following: IWI groups /Individuals / Businesses / School Mathematical leaders / Whanau / MFAL. This provides direct support for identified kiwi youth.  Collaboration is key to selection.

What are the criteria?

Financial need
Mathematical need 
Whanau support to attend weekly lessons 
MFAL Approved Tutor 

How long is each lesson?

1 hour.  Most students have 1 lesson a week, unless there is urgency eg NCEA exams.

What is the Tutor / Student ratio?

1 Tutor to 2 students maximum. 

Does the student need to bring resources?

The Approved Tutor is expected to supply all the resources. MFAL also supports Tutors with recommendations of suitable resources.

Each student is working with the NZ Curriculum. Does MFAL support this?

Absolutely.  We would not consider including material or Approved Tutors who are not aligned with the NZ Curriculum.

Whereabouts are the lessons held?

Each Approved Tutoring business is responsible for a specific location.

What lesson times are available?

Usually the tuition is after school hours but this can vary if collaboration with the school creates alternative times.

How are the Approved Tutors located?

Jean McKenzie is responsible for this as part of her role as Founder / Chairperson of MFAL. Mostly Tutors are located by researching once a sponsorship has been granted for a specific area.

What does MFAL put emphasis on for selection?

MFAL particularly focuses on the following:
  • Mathematical need or extension of the student
  • Whanau support for the student
  • Students in isolated areas
  • Students identified as needing extra support for wellbeing and education

What is the investment per child?

  • Investment for individuals at end of financial year (33.33% tax credit) $1600
  • Primary or Secondary Full year $1067.20

Are there other levels of investment?

Yes there are four levels. Please refer to the website for specifics on what is offered for your investment.
  • Pavlova: Full school year
  • Jellytip: One term
  • Chocolate fish: general donation
  • Jetplane: Voluntary help in another way 

What does the MFAL database record?

  • Applicant information
  • Sponsor details
  • Student results (individual)

What student results are recorded?

Each term the results are recorded for each individual student. These results are collated from Approved Tutors and are based on National standards including NCEA results. An ongoing record of  each student is paramount to reflect the development of their learning plus reporting back to sponsors.

What results are recorded?

We use a Below / At / Above Level rating for Primary school.  We use specific Topics and rating of Not Achieved, Achieved, Merit, Excellence for Secondary school.

How often are the results collated and presented to stakeholders?

The results are collated and recorded in the database each term. They are available on request.


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