The Copyright Act grants educational establishments the permission to use music in the course of education, however any use of music that falls outside of these exemptions requires a licence.

Does your school:

  • Play music at school fundraisers
  • Play music at school open days
  • Participate in music events such as The Big Sing
  • Play music at sporting events
  • Use music at end of year performances
  • Play music at school balls or discos

Under the Copyright Act an educational establishment can perform or play music in the course of its activities, but only to an audience of students or staff. Any other audience, including parents, is considered a 'public performance' and requires a licence. The Copyright Act also provides limited provisions for copying music, with any copying beyond these provisions requiring additional permissions.

The OneMusic Schools Licence ‘tops up’ the rights provided to schools under the Copyright Act, allowing schools to make the most of music.

For more information on the ways schools can use music under the licence click here to view our Schools Guide





How do I get a licence?

The OneMusic licence is administered through the NZSTA. To obtain a licence for your school, email the NZSTA Copyright Coordinator on, or call 0800 663 486.

Who is OneMusic?

OneMusic is a joint licensing initiative between APRA AMCOS and Recorded Music NZ. Many music creators around the world earn an income by granting organisations, like ours, the right to collect and pay their royalties.

OneMusic simplifies the licensing process and allows music users to meet their legal obligations under New Zealand Copyright law.

Where does the money go?

When you hear about music royalties, that’s what we do. Licence fees are distributed to songwriters, composers, publishers, recording artists and record labels, by APRA AMCOS and Recorded Music NZ, who are the companies behind OneMusic. Licence fees for the OneMusic Schools licence are distributed by analogy using data we receive from a rotating sample of schools. Click here to find out more.

I’ve been asked to supply lists of the songs played, is this optional?

Yes, submitting music use is completely optional. To assist in our distribution process, we may request information from you regarding the music used in your school. You can also contact us directly if your school would like to participate in our distribution sample. 

Let us know about the music you use when: 

  • Playing and performing of music e.g. assemblies, over PA systems
  • Using music in a Dramatic Context e.g. plays, ballet
  • Using music in your school disco, school fair or fundraisers
  • Making copies of sheet music and lyrics
  • Using and making recordings


Want to know more? Read the full FAQs here, or call us on 0800 800 663 - we're here to help.