Off-site locations for schools

The Education (Update) Amendment Bill (the Bill) proposes that a school must not use an off-site location or host an off-site location for another school without the prior approval of the Minister of Education (the Minister).  A written agreement between the Secretary for Education (the Secretary) and the school board or boards concerned will also be required.

Further information

When will these changes take effect?

The Bill is expected to come into force in 2017. 

How will this change affect the way schools operate?

Schools that wish to operate or host an off-site location will be required to have such arrangements approved by the Minister of Education.

What will happen to existing off-site location arrangements that do not have Ministerial approval?

Following the Bill coming into force, schools will have one year to obtain the Minister’s approval for existing off-site locations. The Ministry of Education will work closely with schools to help them meet this deadline.

How do schools apply for approval for an off-site location?

Schools can contact the Ministry of Education, which will guide them through the process of obtaining the Minister’s approval and a written agreement with the Secretary.

What counts as an off-site location?

An off-site location means any premises outside the premises of the school that wishes to use the location to provide education.

What sort of information will the written agreement between the Secretary and schools contain?

The written agreement will set out:

  • who is responsible for the education provided at the off-site location
  • who is responsible for the welfare and safety of the students at that location
  • the terms agreed on any other matter the Secretary considers relevant in the particular case.

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