Choosing a school for your child

What to look for in a school?

Every child deserves to receive the best possible education.

The NZ education system is world class and regarded as a leader in quality student learning.  

Schools are increasing being arranged within Communities of Learning : Kahui Ako which provide a holistic view of a student's learning.  Student education experiences are considered within a personalised learning journey, that takes account of personal interests and meets individual learning needs.

Schools work with their local communities to reflect the values, aspirations and meet the needs of its people. 

Parents and Caregivers are provided choice with the opportunity to send their child to the closest state school, or make an application to another school for an Out of Zone enrolment.  The Independent School system also provides a range of options for student learning.

An overview of the NZ education sytem can be found here  Education Counts 


How do I decide what is best for my child?

The key question to answer is:

What is important to you and your child for their education?

What do you want your child to gain from their education while at school?

Although all schools provide an education with respect to the NZ Curriculum, there will be variations around additional activities, programmes, etc.

You need to be satisified that a particular school will meet the educational needs of your child.


Possible areas and questions to evaluate a school

Qualification pathways - What is on offer? Range of subjects? Careers support?

Approach to learning - How is learning arranged? What will my child experience? How are students grouped into classes?

Quality of Teaching - Are the teachers good? Can I trust them with my child's education? Extended learning? 

Learning Support - How does additional learning support work?  My child has particular needs, how will the school support them?

Communication - How will I know about my child's learning? Progress?

Pastoral Care - What pastoral services are avaliable? 

School life and culture - What is the general feel and culture of the school?  What is day to day school life like?

                                      Opportunities for student leadership? Co-curricular, sports, music, cultural activites?

Safety and security - Will my child be safe and secure while at school?

Community voice - What do people in the community say about the school? about the people? What experiences have they had with the school?


Visit and talk to the school. . . . . Parent/Caregiver homework

Visit the school and talk to the people in the school to gain accurate information for helping to make your decision.  

This will also enable you to ask specific questions and also get a sense of the people and how they relate.

Schools often have an enrolment information evening, offer campus/site tours and publish information in a prospectus, brochures, website and online platforms.

Useful resources to assist parents include:

    Choosing a Secondary School  Ministry of Education

    NZ Education for Parents  Ministry of Education 


Please let us know if we can assist you further in your decision.

All the very best for choosing a school for your child!