New Zealand Student Engagement 2006 Publications
This is the seventh annual report on student engagement and presence in New Zealand schools. It provides a picture of how engaged New Zealand students are in schooling by looking at the key indicators of disengagement – stand-down, suspension, exclusion, expulsion and early-leaving exemption – during the 2006 school year.
Author(s): Ralph Lane, National Operations, Ministry of Education.
Date Published: June 2007
This report is available as a download (please refer to the 'Downloads' inset box, top right). The "Where to Find Out More' inset box (right) has links to related publications/information that may be of interest. Downloads of 2006 Regional Stand-down and Suspension Cases are available at the bottom of this page.
Schools are required to report to the Ministry of Education on any disciplinary action taken that, as a consequence, denies a student access to school. The statistics in this report are from that data reported by state or state-integrated schools during the 2006 calendar year.
Schools provide a wide range of responses to breaches of school rules and only those that result in a student being denied access to school are reported here. This report therefore is on school actions and not on the prevalence of any form of student behaviour.
Stand-downs are a form of timeout actively managed by the principal to ensure behavioural issues are addressed with minimum disruption to a student's learning. It is preferable that schools use stand-downs instead of suspensions to manage challenging behaviour by students.
Suspension, which is managed by the board, is for the most serious of issues, and has a broader range of consequences. A suspension can have significant impact on a student's learning and should be avoided if at all possible.
Stand-downs and suspensions are reported separately and are not combined for reporting purposes as they are separate processes with significantly different consequences.
Schools should use the information in this report as a basis for reviewing their own levels of student engagement.
The number of cases (n=5,008) totals more than the number of students (n=4,589) because some students were stood-down, or suspended, more than once. The report is focussed on the number of stand-down and suspension events, rather than the number of students involved.
The report uses 'rate per 1,000 students' to present or discuss changes over time. The rate per 1,000 is calculated by dividing the number of events by the total number of students enrolled and then multiplying by 1,000. Rate per 1,000 provides a consistent measure and allows for comparisons over time.
Engagement and the student population
In 2006 there were 724,419 students enrolled in New Zealand state and state-integrated schools and the ethnic composition of the student population is changing. During the period 2002-2006 the proportionate number of Māori, Pasifika, and Asian students increased (by 6%, 11%, and 20% respectively) while the number of New Zealand European/Pakeha students decreased (by 3%).
Figure 1: Percentage of students by ethnicity, as at July 2006
The number of primary school students peaked in 2003, with a decline seen in 2004 and a continuing decline expected to 2008. In contrast, the number of secondary school students continues to grow and is expected to peak in 2007 or 2008. This shift is important because most stand-downs and suspensions occur in secondary schools.
- 50% of schools did not use stand-downs.
- There were 22,467 stand-down cases in 2006. This is about three stand-downs for every hundred students.
- Stand-down rates have risen slightly from last year.
- The most common reasons for stand-down were continual disobedience, physical assault of other students, or verbal abuse of teachers.
- For most students who were stood-down, this was a once-only event.
- Stand-downs were most likely to occur in secondary schools.
- More male students were stood-down than female students.
- The proportion of Māori students stood-down was higher than the proportion of students of any other ethnicity.
- About 75% of all schools did not use suspensions.
- There were 5,008 suspension cases in 2006. This is a rate of less than one suspension for every hundred students.
- Overall, suspension rates have dropped. This is particularly noticeable in secondary schools where the suspension rate is the lowest it has been in seven years.
- Suspensions related to drug abuse have fallen 33% since 2000.
- For most students who were suspended, this was a once-only event.
- Suspensions were most likely to occur in secondary schools.
- More male students were suspended than female students.
- The proportion of Māori students suspended was higher than the proportion of students of any other ethnicity.
- Auckland [File size: 195KB]
- Bay of Plenty [File size: 183KB]
- Canterbury [File size: 192KB]
- Gisborne [File size: 140KB]
- Hawke's Bay [File size: 174KB]
- Manawatu-Wanganui [File size: 183KB]
- Marlborough [File size: 121KB]
- Nelson [File size: 136KB]
- Northland [File size: 167KB]
- Otago [File size: 170KB]
- Southland [File size: 157KB]
- Taranaki [File size: 160KB]
- Tasman [File size: 133KB]
- Waikato [File size: 192KB]
- Wellington [File size: 190KB]
- West Coast [File size: 144KB]
Where to find out more
Education Data Requests
If you have any questions about education data then please contact us at:
Email: Requests EDK
Phone: +64 4 463 8065