Starting School

We encourage parents to enrol their preschool child at the age of four using our online enrolment form. At the age of five, a child may enter school. Most children in New Zealand begin school at five years although it is not compulsory to commence until the age of six years.

St Albans School along with other schools in our cluster have adopted cohort entry. This means:
• children starting school in groups after they have turned five
• there will be two entry points each term, one on the first day of term and one at a mid-point during a term.

226/04/2023 (Wednesday)29/05/2023

For example:
If your child turns five on December 29th 2022 they would enter school as a New Entrant on 07/02/2023. If they turn five on the February 9th 2023 their start date would be 13/03/23.

Once your child is enrolled you will be given the dates of your child’s two pre-entry visits for the two weeks before their starting school date. The first visit is from 8.55am – 10.30 am. and the second visit is from 8.55am – 1.00pm.

To complete your child’s enrolment we will need:
• child’s full names and address
• birth certificate (to be shown to verify the date of birth for a five year old child)
• parents’ surnames and christian names
• occupation, address and phone number
• alternative contact phone number for an emergency
• family background – other siblings and child’s place in family
• your child’s Plunket Book – there is a form in it for you to complete titled ‘To the Child Health Nurse at Primary School’
• details of your child’s enrolment at a Dental Clinic (children can be enrolled at aged 2)
• details of pre-school attended, and for how long
• details of health factors and medical problems (e.g., asthma, glue ear) that you think may affect your child’s development or that we should be aware of
• notification if a ‘Before School Health Check’ has been completed
• name of family doctor or medical centre
• any information and records regarding specialist help, e.g., Early Intervention, that your child may have received prior to school entry
• evidence of your residential address, e.g., a current power bill or rental agreement

At the end of each term there is a transition to school meeting for parents whose children will be starting the following term. These are held in the evening to accommodate working parents.

The leader of the junior school and one of the deputy principals lead this meeting. They provide you with an outline of what to expect from our school. This is an opportunity for you to ask questions about your child’s start to school.
The PTA also attend these meetings and offer you the opportunity to join this group. They also have information regarding second-hand uniform sales.
You will meet your child’s home base teacher and the parents of the other children who will be in that home base. You are encouraged to fill in a parent contact sheet. This provides you with the opportunity to arrange playdates with other children before they start school. This is especially beneficial for children who do not go to a local preschool.

It would be helpful if you and your child arrive before 8.55am. We ask that you come to the office and sign in. Children will need to bring morning tea for the first visit. They will require morning tea and lunch for the second visit. We ask that you supply this food in a named container. The purpose of these visits is to introduce your child to the school environment. When your child looks settled we recommend that you say goodbye and that you will return at the appropriate time so that your child and the teacher may get to know each other. Some children become upset at the thought of Mum or Dad leaving but quickly settle down once they have left. At the first pre-entry visit your child will be shown:
• where to hang their bag and coat
• where to put their lunchbox and drink bottle
• where the toilets are
• where to play at playtime
• where to have a drink
• where to sit for lunch

During the morning programme your child will participate in the normal learning activities. After their time has finished please visit the office to sign out again.

When your child starts school officially they are able to go straight to their assigned home base.