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Preparing for secondary school

Years 0 to 8 are the primary years, and children in these years are generally aged 5 to 12 years. In some areas children go to an intermediate school for years 7 and 8.

This section provides an overview of schooling available and career development for Year 7 and 8 students in the Whangarei district.

Intermediate schools in Whangarei district

Most primary and intermediate schools are state schools. This means they:

  • are government-funded, so do not charge school fees

  •  teach the National Curriculum (New Zealand Curriculum or Te Marautanga o Aotearoa)

Within the state school system there are English and te reo Māori options, options for different age-groups, language and cultures, values and religious beliefs:

  • Primary schools for years 1 - 6, or years 1 - 8

  • Intermediate schools for years 7 and 8

  • Middle schools for years 7 to 10

  • Area schools and composite schools offer primary, intermediate and secondary education in one school.

  • Kura kaupapa Māori (commonly referred to as kura) are state schools where the teaching is in te reo Māori and is based on Māori culture and values. These schools are under the umbrella of Te Aho Mātua and follow the curriculum for Māori-medium teaching, learning and assessment, Te Marautanga o Aotearoa. They cater for students from years 1 to 8 or years 1 to 13.


These schools provide Year 7 and Year 8 classes and offer core subjects and a wide range of specialist technical classes

There are two intermediate schools in Whangarei:


There are a large number of full primary schools in Whangarei, who cater for students at Years 7 and 8. 

Education Counts has detail information on all schools

Career education in Years 7 and 8

Career education at Year 7 and 8 is focussed on developing self-awareness, knowledge of opportunities, and the preparation for transition to secondary school.  Career education forms the foundation for future career development and informed decision-making for life after secondary school. 

The National Administration Guidelines provide a legislative framework for the provision of education within New Zealand schools.  This includes career development and guidance as per NAG 1(f)

NAG 1(f): ‘provide appropriate career education and guidance for all students in year 7 and above, with a particular emphasis on specific career guidance for those students who have been identified by the school as being at risk of leaving school unprepared for the transition to the workplace or further education/training.’

The ‘Year 7 and 8 Career Development Benchmarks’ are a tool to support provision of career education and guidance in schools with Year 7 and 8 students

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