St Andrew's College (Christchurch) - 17/06/2016

1 Background

The Chief Review Officer has a statutory duty to report on the performance of private schools throughout New Zealand.

ERO reviews of private schools are significantly different in process and more limited in scope and reporting than those for state and state-integrated schools, focusing as they do on the Criteria for Registration set out in section 35C of the Education Act.

Section 35I of the Education Act 1989 requires the Education Review Office (ERO) to review private schools and to report to the Ministry of Education on whether each school continues to meet the criteria for registration. The schools are privately owned and the legislative requirements are significantly different to those for state and state-integrated schools. Private schools are not required to follow the National Education Goals or National Administration Guidelines.

What does apply in place of the legislation imposed upon state schools by the Education Act is the contract between the persons paying for the tuition of the child at the school – the parents – and the school authority. Those are matters between the parent and the school’s governing body. More information about ERO reviews of private schools can be found on ERO’s website

The criteria for registration are that the school —

a)has premises that are suitable, as described in section 35D; and

b)usually provides tuition for 9 or more students who are of or over the age of 5 years but are under the age of 16 years; and

c)has staffing that is suitable to the age range and level of its students, the curriculum taught at the school, and the size of the school; and

d)has equipment that is suitable for the curriculum being delivered or to be delivered at the school; and

e)has a curriculum for teaching, learning, and assessment and makes details of the curriculum and its programme for delivery available for parents; and

f)has suitable tuition standards, as described in section 35F; and

g)has managers who are fit and proper persons (as described in section 35G) to be managers of a private school.

St Andrew’s College is a private, co-educational school founded on the Presbyterian faith. It includes a preparatory school (Years 1-8) and a secondary school (Years 9-13).

2 Criteria for Registration

The college continues to meet the criteria for registration. Strong governance, leadership and management have helped the college to sustain and build on the best of past practices and promote ongoing school improvement.

Suitable Curriculum

The college’s curriculum remains closely linked to the New Zealand Curriculum and is well documented. It reflects the special character of the school and its guiding values.

Students experience a broad and varied range of learning opportunities through the college’s extensive curriculum and associated co-curricular activities. Timetabling practices support students to follow their study choices.

A wide variety of initiatives have enhanced the school’s curriculum. These have resulted in learning opportunities continuing to expand in response to students’ strengths, interests and needs. Growing links between the preparatory school and secondary school are helping to provide greater continuity for students in their learning as they move through the school.

Students learn in an environment that supports their wellbeing and sense of belonging. A strong sense of community is evident within and beyond the school.

Well-established assessment practices help teachers accurately determine students’ achievement and progress. Achievement information is increasingly accessible to leaders, teachers, students and parents. Significant improvements have been made in the way achievement information is collated, analysed and effectively used to focus teaching and learning.

The college’s analysed achievement information shows students achieve very well both in relation to the National Standards and gaining qualifications on the New Zealand Qualification Authority framework. Over time, a notable increase has occurred in the number of students gaining excellence endorsements in National Certificates of Educational Achievement.

Suitable Tuition

A continued focus on promoting high quality teaching has led to ongoing improvements to the quality of tuition. Common features of teaching include high expectations along with well-planned and focused instruction. Programmes and practices are becoming increasingly differentiated in response to emerging student needs. A growing focus on preparing students for the 21st century is helping to engage them in their learning.

Suitable Staffing

The college staffing is suitable for the age range and year levels of the students, the school’s size and curriculum. Staff strengths are well utilised.

Successful recruitment practices along with ongoing professional development and support ensures the school has the capacity to sustain, and continue to improve, the quality of education for students.

Improved appraisal processes support professional growth and provide good levels of accountability.

Increased levels of collegiality, professional expertise and reflection are being promoted through such initiatives as the groups for professional learning and research and innovation.

Growing opportunities for staff to undertake leadership responsibilities is helping to build their capability and supporting school improvement.

Suitable Premises & Equipment

The college premises continue to meet the board’s suitability criteria for property. Extensive, well planned, ongoing improvements have been and are being made to facilities. College premises are well managed. They effectively support the delivery of the school’s varied curriculum.

Teachers and students have ready access to a wide variety of useful equipment and resources to support teaching and learning across the curriculum. Significant investment in resources and staffing is successfully supporting the effective use of digital technologies for administration, teaching and learning.

Well organised systems continue to be in place for the maintenance of premises and also the maintenance and replacement of equipment. Systems for hazard identification and management are robust.

School Management

The school’s managers have attested that they comply with the provisions of section 35G in respect to their being fit and proper persons to manage the school.

3 Other Obligations

There are good systems in place for the school’s managing body to be assured that its other statutory obligations are being met.

4 Other Matters

Provision for international students

The school is a signatory to the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students (the Code) established under section 238F of the Education Act. The school has attested that it complies with all aspects of the Code.

At the time of the review there were twenty five international fee-paying students attending the school including 3 exchange students.

The school makes good provision for supporting its international students, promoting their involvement in the life of the school and fostering their wellbeing and learning.

Provision for students in the school hostel

The school’s hostel, St Andrew’s College Hostel, accommodates 158 students, 16% of the secondary school roll. It is owned by the college’s board of governors. The hostel owner has attested that all the requirements of the Hostel Regulations are met.

The well-managed boarding houses continue to be an integral part of the college culture and operation. The hostel's effective operation was successfully sustained during a period of challenge and significant disruption following the Canterbury earthquakes.

ERO agrees with the findings of the August 2015 external review of the hostel. The hostel continues to implement effective systems for promoting students’ safety and wellbeing.

5 Conclusion

On the basis of information obtained during the review, ERO considers the college meets the criteria for registration as a private school, set out in Education ACT 1989, very well.

ERO agrees with the strategic goals the board has set to promote continuous school improvement. 

Lesley Patterson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Southern

17 June 2016

About the School



Ministry of Education profile number


School type

Private Composite (Years 1 to 13)

School roll


Number of international students


Gender composition

Boys 62%; Girls 38%

Ethnic composition











Special Features

School Hostel and Pre School on site

Review team on site

May 2016

Date of this report

17 June 2016

Most recent ERO report(s)

Private School Review

Private School Review

Private School Review

December 2010

February 2008

February 2005