Catholic Schools Roll Report

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July 2017 Roll Report

July 2017 Roll Report


The sixty-six thousand Catholic school students represent 8.3% of the New Zealand school network, of which approximately two-fifths (29K) are Y1-6 Primary students and about two thousand less Y9-13 Secondary students (27K) and the remainder Y7-8 Intermediate level (11K), who may be in primary or secondary schools.

Overall, the number of Catholic school students has held steady over the past ten years with an increase over that period of almost two thousand students (2.8%). However, the share of the whole school network has declined by .3% as the school-age student in New Zealand has increased by over forty-two thousand students (5.5%).

Catholic schools in New Zealand have become more ethnically diverse over the past decade. The number of non-European/Pākeha Catholic school students has increased (Māori 17%, Pasifika 4%, Asian 62% and Other 12%).

The average school size for a Catholic school in New Zealand is 280 students. Most Catholic schools are Full Primary schools (Years 1 to 8) but they are our smallest schools with an average student roll of around 170. Most secondary schools are open to Years 7 to 15 and have an average student roll of about 750.

Unsurprisingly, most of our Catholic school students are based in the Auckland region. This tracks well with the proportion of the whole school population, Catholic and non-Catholic, in each region. Our next largest student populations by region are Wellington and Canterbury (14.5% and 11.9% for total Catholic students respectively).

There is some small difference between regions when looking at the percentage of a region’s school student population attending a Catholic school. The regions with the most Catholic student representation include Taranaki, Wellington, Nelson, West Coast and Southland; all with more than 10% of students attending a Catholic school (New Zealand-wide being 8.3%). There are many variables affecting this, including availability and capacity of schools in the region, the region’s Catholic population, and in some cases the nearest school may be situated near but outside of the region (in the case of Marlborough).

The diocesan summaries provide a breakdown by Primary and Secondary student population and we also show the ethnic make-up for each diocese. The Auckland and Wellington dioceses, with their more multi-cultural urban populations, have a more ethnically diverse student populations, followed by Hamilton and Palmerston North.

An update of this report will be timed to follow the Ministry of Education release of the March roll returns. A downloadable PDF version is available here.