Residential special schools (RSS)

Residential special schools are for students with educational needs relating to: vision, hearing, and socialisation, behaviour, and learning.

RSS enrolments

All RSS enrolments are made through the Section 9 process.

Entering into a section 9 agreement

To find out how to access a residential special school, contact your local office. Further information is provided in the links below.

Local Ministry offices

Schools for students with social, behaviour and/or learning needs

Westbridge Residential School is a co-educational school and is in Waitakere City.

Westbridge Residential School website(external link)

Halswell Residential College is a co-educational school and is in Christchurch.

Halswell Residential College website(external link)

Salisbury School is for girls and is in Nelson.

Salisbury School website(external link)

These 3 schools are for students aged from 8-15 (Year 3-10), who have social, behaviour and/or learning needs that are highly complex and challenging. These needs impact in home, school and community settings. Local learning support services have been accessed and are unable to meet needs.

Young people can access a RSS enrolment through 2 pathways:

  • with additional support through the Te Kahu Toi, Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS), or
  • through the RSS only access pathway.

Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS)

RSS only access pathway without IWS support

School for students who are blind or have low vision

Blind and Low Vision Education Network New Zealand (BLENNZ) runs a national network with resource centres across the country. It also provides residential placements at Homai. These placements are for students who need residential programmes to support their learning.

BLENNZ website(external link)

The following webpage provides more information about BLENNZ.

Support for students who are blind or who have low vision

Schools for students who are deaf or hard of hearing

Deaf Education Centres employ Resource Teachers: Deaf, who support students in their regular schools. They each have residential options, early childhood support and resource centres.

Kelston Deaf Education Centre is in Auckland and supports students in the top half of the North Island.

Kelston Deaf Education Centre website(external link) 

Van Asch Deaf Education Centre is in Christchurch and supports students in schools in the South Island and the lower half of the North Island.

Van Asch Deaf Education Centre website(external link) 

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