Probation Officer Āpiha Matakana

Probation officers supervise offenders serving a sentence in the community. They also help ex-prisoners return to society.

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Probation officers may do some or all of the following:

  • talk to offenders, their families and others about the offender's background
  • prepare reports for court cases 
  • prepare reports on prisoners who are being considered for parole
  • make recommendations about appropriate programmes and treatment
  • manage parole and community service work
  • supervise people in home and community detention
  • motivate offenders to make changes in their behaviour
  • work with community agencies to get services, such as housing, for offenders
  • refer offenders to suitable treatment or counselling agencies
  • write reports about the progress of offenders.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for probation officers includes:

  • work as a corrections officer
  • community work
  • social work
  • coaching experience.

Personal Qualities

Probation officers need to be:

  • good communicators
  • able to relate to people from a range of cultures and backgrounds
  • mature, honest and confident
  • good at analysis and problem solving
  • able to remain positive in difficult situations
  • alert and observant
  • able to work well under pressure.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for probation officers includes:

  • work as a corrections officer
  • community work
  • social work
  • coaching experience.

Subject Recommendations

There are no specific secondary education requirements to become a probation officer, but NCEA Level 3 is preferred. Useful subjects include languages, social studies and te reo Māori.

Probation Officers can earn around $54K-$60K per year per year.

Probation officers may progress to work as senior probation officers, who are responsible for mentoring and coaching new staff.

They may also move into jobs in management or policy at the Department of Corrections or the Ministry of Justice.

Probation Officer

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