How to enter

Find out how to enter the 2021 National Schools Poetry Award.

The 2021 Award is now open for entries in either English or te reo Māori. The Award is free to enter.

Information is sent to all eligible schools by March in each year the Award is held. If your school has not received an Awards information pack from us by March and would like to be added to the mailing list, please contact the IIML.

Please read following rules carefully before submitting your poem. Entries that do not comply with the rules will not be considered:

  • Entrants must be Year 12 or 13 students currently enrolled in a New Zealand secondary school, or verified home-schooling equivalent;
  • Only one poem per student may be submitted;
  • The poem may be on any subject. It must be the original, unpublished work of the entrant and must not have been submitted for other publications or competitions;
  • Click on the 'Enter online here' button above, or go to, fill in the online entry form and upload your poem;
  • The writer’s name should only appear on the entry form – not on the poem itself;
  • Entries must be received by midnight on the deadline date: 5 July 2021
  • Copyright remains with the individual writers. The International Institute of Modern Letters (IIML) reserves the right to publish the prize-winning entries without further payment;
  • The winner and shortlisted poets will be announced on 27 August 2021 - National Poetry Day.

For more information, email or telephone: +64-4-463 6854.