Data Services

Student Engagement

This page describes the Student Engagement data collection.


The Ministry of Education developed a Student Engagement database in July 1999, following the introduction of the Education (Suspension) Rules 1999.   The Student Engagement database is also known as the Stand-down and Suspension database or SDS database.

The purpose of student engagement legislation and rules is to:

(a)   ensure that individual cases are dealt with in accordance with the principals of natural justice

(b)   provide a range of responses  for cases of varying degrees of seriousness

(c)   minimise the disruption to a student’s attendance at school

(d)   facilitate the return of the student to school when that is appropriate.

The student engagement database deals with stand-downs, suspensions, exclusions and expulsions.

Stand-down is the formal removal of a student from school for a specified period. Stand-downs of a student can total no more than 5 school days in any term, or 10 days in a school year. Following stand-downs, students return automatically to school.

Suspension is the formal removal of a student from school until the board of trustees decides the outcome at a suspension meeting. Following a suspension the board may decide to lift the suspension with or without conditions, to extend the suspension, or in the most serious cases, to either exclude or expel the student.

Exclusion means the formal removal of a student aged under 16 from the school, and the requirement that the student enrol elsewhere.

Expulsion means the formal removal of a student aged 16 or over from school. He or she may enrol in another school.

Key Findings

The latest information on student engagement, as well as summaries of previous years, can be found in the Student Engagement home page.  Data on Student Engagement can be accessed via the following links:

    Links to Student Engagement Data:
    Stand-Downs, Suspensions, Exclusions and Expulsions from School (Indicator)
      Indicator Icon  Stand-downs, suspensions, exclusions and expulsions from school
      Data Stand-downs (Indicator)
      Indicator Icon  Stand-downs Data
      Data Suspensions (Indicator)
      Indicator Icon  Suspensions Data
      Data Exclusions (Indications)
      Indicator Icon  Exclusions Data
      Data Expulsions (Indicator)
      Indicator Icon  Expulsions Data


    Student engagement data are used as the basis for a significant amount of analysis and many publications about schooling in New Zealand. Boards of trustees data can be found in:

    Links to Publications and Indicators containing July Roll Return Data:
      Education Statistics of New Zealand (Publication)
      Indicator Icon  Education Statistics of New Zealand
      New Zealand Schools: Ngā Kura o Aotearoa (Publication)
      Indicator Icon  New Zealand Schools: Ngā Kura o Aotearoa
     Ngā Haeata Matauranga - Annual Report on Māori Education (Publication)
      Indicator Icon  Ngā Haeata Matauranga - Annual Report on Māori Education
      Pasifika Education Plan: Monitoring Report 2006 (Publication)
      Indicator Icon  Pasifika Education Plan: Monitoring Report 2006

    Other Websites

    Logo-MoE    Ministry of Education
        The Ministry of Education's main website has policy
        information and guidelines to support school boards
        of trustees and parents regarding student engagement.

    TKI-Logo    Te Kete Ipurangi
        Student Support on TKI provides access to student support
        related material including student engagement. Bilingual
        portal site which provides quality assured educational
        material for teachers, school managers, and the wider
                                                                                                                                 education community.

         Educational Leaders
        The Educational Leaders website, formerly LeadSpace, is
        for principals and school leaders. School leaders will find
        resources relating to management and professional

    Data Collection

    The Student Engagement database is administered by the National Office of the Ministry of Education.  Data is inputted at the Regional Offices of the Ministry, and analysed/reported at all levels: National, Regional, and Local Offices. 

    The Guidelines for Principals and Boards of Trustees on Stand-downs, Suspension, Exclusions and Expulsions outline the processes involved with being stood-down, suspended, excluded or expelled. Included on this page are the reporting forms which obtain the data that ultimately goes into the Student Engagement Data Collection

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