Student Engagement

This page describes the Student Engagement data collection.

Student Engagement Key Findings, Publications, Data and Guidelines

Please consider the environment before printing the contents of this report. For links to Student engagement indicators and publications please refer to the 'Related Pages' inset box (top right). For stand-downs, suspensions, exclusions and expusions (SSEE) guidelines please refer to the 'Where to find out More' inset box (right).


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.

Related Pages

Where to find out more

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