ZB ZB
Live now
Start time
Playing for
End time
Listen live
Listen to NAME OF STATION
Up next
Listen live on
ZB

Thousands of students stood down - highest in 20 years

Author
RNZ,
Publish Date
Tue, 5 Mar 2024, 10:12AM
Stand-downs are the formal removal of a pupil from a school for no more than five days. Photo / RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King
Stand-downs are the formal removal of a pupil from a school for no more than five days. Photo / RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

Thousands of students stood down - highest in 20 years

Author
RNZ,
Publish Date
Tue, 5 Mar 2024, 10:12AM

Schools stood down pupils 25,167 times in 2022 - the highest number in more than 20 years of records, Education Ministry figures show. 

The figure was equivalent to almost 3.3 stand-downs for every 100 students, the highest rate on record by a narrow margin. 

Stand-downs are the formal removal of a pupil from a school for no more than five days and the figures show 24 per cent of the 18,681 young people stood down last year were stood down more than once. 

Although stand-downs increased in 2022, the rates of more serious punishments - suspensions and exclusions/expulsions - remained similar to or lower than past years. 

Stand-down rates were highest on the West Coast at 6.7 per 100 pupils, followed by Southland with five stand-downs per 100, and Waikato with 4.6. 

Vaping is becoming an increasing problem amongst youth. Photo / 123rfVaping is becoming an increasing problem amongst youth. Photo / 123rf 

Smoking, vaping or alcohol was behind 16 per cent of stand-downs in 2022, the highest figure on record, and up from 8 per cent in 2019. 

Physical assault on students was the single highest cause of a stand-down, accounting for 29 per cent of cases in 2022 - slightly lower than previous years. 

The figures show the rate of stand down for assaults on other students was close to one for every 100 students, almost the same as in 2019 before the pandemic began. 

Stand-down rates were highest among 13 and 14-year-olds (about 7.5 per 100), boys (4.3 per 100), Māori pupils (5 per 100), and students from schools in poorer communities (about 5 per 100 in primary schools and nearly 6 in secondary schools). 

An Education Ministry report accompanying the figures said physical assaults and smoking or vaping had increased. 

“The reason with the highest increase for stand-downs was physical assaults on other students. These rose from 5917 cases in 2021 to 7409 cases in 2022 and accounted for 36 per cent [1492 out of 4162] of the increase in stand-down cases,” the report said. 

Smoking/vaping had the second highest increase and accounted for 20 per cent [853 out of 4162] of the increase in stand down cases between 2021 and 2022.” 

The ministry’s report said rates increased from 2016 to 2019, and again from 2020 to 2022, but there was no corresponding increase in more serious disciplinary responses. 

Stand-downs are the formal removal of a pupil from a school for no more than five days. Photo / RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-KingStand-downs are the formal removal of a pupil from a school for no more than five days. Photo / RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King 

In 2022, there were 2728 suspension cases affecting 2485 students, the report said. 

Following the suspension process, schools and kura excluded 852 students and expelled 98, the report said. 

-John Gerritsen of RNZ 

Take your Radio, Podcasts and Music with you