Dramatic increase in student rolls

by Mike Isle

With over 1,500 more pupils than this time last year, Selwyn schools are in for a boom year say local principals. Many of the district’s 29 schools are recording increased rolls, with some adding new staff as well.

The total number of students enrolled in Selwyn is 9,500. 

The principal of Lemonwood Grove School, one of two new schools to open in Rolleston last year, Sean Bailey, said his school would be welcoming 40 new entrants this year, bringing the total student roll up to 160. He also has two new teachers on staff.

“We are a young school,” he said. “But that only adds to the energy and we are looking forward to an exciting year and curriculum.”

Next door to Lemonwood Grove, Waitaha Special Needs Day School is celebrating its move to a new site and a brand new facility with 50 students.

Satellite schools boost Waitaha’s roll to 80 students.

The principal of the other new school, Rolleston College, Steve Saville, said his school’s roll had doubled, though much of that was attributable to the school now including years nine and ten. The school enrolled 220 new students this year and employed six new teachers.

Mr Saville said the school was excited about building on its growth as it entered its second year.

“We had a great first year, and we are certainly looking forward to building on that.”

Rolleston Christian School principal, Liz Horn, said her school had increased by 18% bringing the school roll up to 130. That included nine new entrants.

One new teacher had been added to the staff.

West Rolleston School has increased its roll by 44 and employed 4 new teachers.

Rural communities are also boasting big numbers. Prebbleton Primary’s roll is 467—up 27 from the beginning of 2017; Darfield High School has a roll of 850, including 126 Year Seven entrants.

At Lincoln Primary, the growth has been both steady and spectacular. There are three additional teachers on board this year, and principal Viv Butcher reports that the school roll has increased from 566 at the beginning of 2017, to 661 this year. 

As reported last month by The Record, the start of the school year and the dramatic increase in student numbers are putting the focus on road safety around schools.

Schools, Police and the Selwyn District Council are all counselling care and caution.

Senior Sergeant Pete Stills of the New Zealand Police said Police have mounted a campaign specifically aimed at safety around Selwyn’s schools.

“Police will also be patrolling outside schools and preschools targeting speeding drivers, illegal parking and dangerous driving manoeuvres. The safety of all children is paramount.”