Private vs Public Schools

In some countries there is a debate between choosing public and private schooling with the quality level of private institutions usually being much higher.   However in New Zealand this does not always apply.  One major difference in some countries is the extracurricular activates and facilities made available to the students at the school.  Schools like Howick College offer most if not all the sporting, and cultural activities available at private schools in NZ.

Three key characteristics that can be compared when comparing public and private schools are:

  • Teaching – New Zealand highly values the importance of good teachers so there is no real difference in the pay rate of public and private school teachers which can’t be said of most countries in the world.  In general decile 10 schools in NZ including Howick College attract the best teachers due to the fact that the students that attend these schools have a stronger willingness to learn and have families that encourage learning during these formative years.
  • Facilities – In New Zealand all schools are given a “decile score” between 1-10.  One being schools in low socio-economic areas and  10 being all the private schools as well as a few public schools in high socio-economic areas.  Howick College is rated as a decile 10 school due to the income level of the surrounding area.
  • Budgets –Private schools have a bigger budget than public schools so they can offer more to their students.  In NZ private schools receive only partial government funding and the rest is made up of their school fees and also parental donations.  Public schools receive full governmental funding.  Schools such as Howick college that are privileged enough to be located in more affluent areas not only get governmental funding but also receive optional donations from parents and past students to help provide extra facilities.

In New Zealand a student attending a top public school can have equal opportunities for academic, cultural and sporting success, without paying exorbitant fees.

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