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Education in New Zealand

Education in New Zealand

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Published by David Adoh

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: David Adoh on Jul 28, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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10/25/2012

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Education in New ZealandNew Zealand has an excellent government funded education systemproviding qualifications that are equal to the best in the world. In additionto the state (government funded) sector, there is also a flourishing privateeducation sector.
All schools must operate under the provisions of the Education Act of 1989 andmust follow The New Zealand Curriculum, a statement of student learning policy forschools, setting out the expectations for what all children should learn. The New Zealand Education Act (1989) provides free education in approximately2,700 state schools which are administered by Boards of Trustees. Each Board of  Trustees has a large measure of autonomy in its governance of its school.Government-funded schools (state schools) do not charge tuition fees howeverparents are expected to meet some minor costs such as uniforms, stationery andsome extracurricular activities such as sports trips or school camps.In some circumstances children are required to attend the school they are zonedfor. If one chooses to live outside the zone of the preferred school, children may notbe eligible for a place in that school. Any spare places at popular schools aregenerally allocated by ballot.Exceptions to zoning may include attendance at a school with a special character -such as a religious school.
Sectors of schooling
 The New Zealand education system is broadly divided into the following categories:
Early childhood (preschool and kindergarten);
Primary school starting at age five (year 1 to 6);
Intermediate school starting at age 11 (years 7 to 8);
Secondary school starting at around age 13 (years 9 to 13) and finishing atage 17 or 18;
 Tertiary or vocational higher education.Early childhood children usually attend preschool between the ages of two and fiveyears old. Attendance at preschool is not compulsory however it is common forparents to enrol their children in early childhood programmes.
 
New Zealand has a wide range of early childhood services, including both state-funded and private preschools. Many are run by private operators, communitychurch groups and voluntary agencies.
Kindergarten
Kindergartens are an alternative to preschools and provide early childhoodeducation for children from the age of three to five years.Children attend either morning or afternoon sessions which are informal and focuson developing social skills and learning through play.Most kindergartens have two or three trained teachers but parents are expected tohelp out both with class supervision and with fundraising and committee work.Kindergartens usually do not charge fees but donations are generally expected.
Primary School
Children must be enrolled at a primary school by their sixth birthday, however themajotiy of children attend primary school once they turn five years old.A number of primary schools also take children through to the completion of intermediate school (Year 7 and 8). Depending on local schooling options, childrenin Years 7 and 8 can either stay at their primary school or move to an intermediateschool for these two years. The primary school curriculum covers English language (oral and written, reading,handwriting and spelling), mathematics, science, social sciences, the arts (includingmusic), technology, and physical health and well-being.At intermediate level, workshop craft and home economics are also studied. Maorilanguage and culture is also taught widely in schools.
Secondary School
 There are 440 secondary schools throughout New Zealand. Although the largestschools have around 2000 students, the average school size has about 1000students.Attendance at secondary school is compulsory up to age 16 (Year 11 or 12). Themajority of students remain in school until the age of 18, however students canattend secondary school until the end of the year they turn 19.Secondary school is also known as high school or college and covers ages 13 to 18(Years 9 to 13). In some rural parts of New Zealand primary and secondary schoolsmay be combined to form what is known as an Area School.
Tertiary Education
 
Nearly a quarter of New Zealanders have some form of tertiary education andcurrently about 40% of school leavers go directly to tertiary training. Tuition fees are not fully covered by the state, and students are expected tocontribute to these. Tertiary education fees vary considerably depending on thecourse of study and the chosen provider of the course.
University
 There are eight government-funded universities in New Zealand and all haveinternationally respected academic and research standards. At university, studentscan work towards bachelor, master and doctoral degrees.
Career and Vocational Training
New Zealand has 25 polytechnics providing a very wide range of courses up to andincluding degree-level. Polytechnics also provide short courses, pre- employmentcourses and vocational education training courses.
Types of school
 The majority of students in New Zealand attend state-funded schools, howeverthere are a number of schooling options available to parents, caregivers andstudents.In general a child can attend any state school, even one that is not the closest towhere they live. It should be noted however that this is not always the case.
State schools
State schools are co-educational (mixed sexes) at primary and intermediate level,but some offer single-sex education at secondary level. Lessons are based on theNew Zealand Curriculum.
Special Schools
Special schools are state schools that provide education for students with specialeducation needs. The curriculum is the same as at other state schools.
Integrated Schools
Integrated schools are schools that used to be private and have now become part of the state system. They teach the New Zealand Curriculum but keep their ownspecial character (usually a philosophical or religious belief) as part of their schoolprogramme.
Designated Character

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