Historic claims for abuse or neglect at a Residential Special School

If you believe you were abused or neglected at a Residential Special School run by the Department of Education before 1989, you can make a historic claim.

The Ministry of Education can work with you to find a resolution.

We'll meet with you and hear your complaint. Then we'll explore options for helping you, which can be wide-ranging.

Grounds for making a claim

You can contact the Ministry if you agree with all of these 3 statements:

  • You believe you were abused, mistreated or neglected when you attended a Residential Special School run by the Department of Education.
  • You believe that treatment has harmed or damaged you in some way.
  • You want the Ministry to do something about the mistreatment.

Our process for historic claims

We'll explain how we may be able to help. We'll invite you to meet us to discuss your case in more detail. If you seek resolution, and possibly a financial payment, we'll investigate your case.

If we were wrong, we’ll apologise to you. We'll also look at what other help we can provide.

If you seek a financial payment, we'll offer you a fair and reasonable amount, if appropriate.

You don't need a lawyer to work with us. However, you can seek legal advice at any stage if you wish.

You may also get legal advice to file a civil claim in the High Court. Your lawyer can advise you whether you might qualify for legal aid.

If your complaint is about criminal conduct, you may also wish to make a complaint with the Police.

Contact us

You can phone us on 0800 663 252.

Email: Sensitive.Claims@education.govt.nz

Historic Claims
Sector Enablement and Support
Ministry of Education
PO Box 1666
Wellington 6140

Discussing other aspects of your time in care

We're happy to talk with you if you just have questions about your time in care.

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