Christchurch education boasts a robust system that caters to all age groups (from early childhood education to tertiary education), as well as preferences on single-sex or co-educational schools, public or private schools, and school models or systems. It is home to a whopping 145 schools, most of which are large urban schools within the city, while a few are small rural schools around the Banks Peninsula.
Another advantage of Christchurch’s educational system are the opportunities for people to enroll in specialised courses for postgraduate studies. For us at Lovoir Day Spa and the rest of the beauty industry, we are fortunate enough to live in a city with established schools for aestheticians, beauty therapists and other related careers. These are just among many universities and institutions offering courses for niche careers.
All that said, the city’s education sector is well-regarded for its quality and diversity of opportunities. Keep reading and you’ll see why!
Primary and Secondary Education
Christchurch is home to numerous primary and secondary schools that provide high-quality education. These include both state and private institutions, as well as single-sex and co-educational schools. Some notable schools in the city include:
- Burnside High School, the fourth largest school in New Zealand
- Four single-sex state schools: Christchurch Boys’ High School, Shirley Boys’ High School, Christchurch Girls’ High School, and Avonside Girls’ High School
- Other large co-ed schools include Cashmere High School, Papanui High School, Riccarton High School
Apart from public schools, Christchurch also offers several private church schools, some of them modeled after the English public school system. These include:
- Catholic Cathedral College
- Christ’s College
- Marian College
- Rangi Ruru Girls’ School
- St. Andrew’s College
- St. Bede’s College
- St. Margaret’s College
- St. Thomas of Canterbury College
- Villa Maria College
Christchurch hosts three significant tertiary education institutions.
- The University of Canterbury, established in 1873, is New Zealand’s second-oldest university. It offers a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses across various disciplines.
- The Ara Institute of Canterbury is one of New Zealand’s largest vocational training institutes, providing a comprehensive range of certificate, diploma, and degree programs.
- Lincoln University is an offshoot of Lincoln College, Canterbury after it became independently established as University of Canterbury. It is the smallest university in New Zealand and is the oldest agricultural teaching institution in the Southern Hemisphere.
Specialised Courses and Institutions
Apart from basic education, there are other educational institutions in the city that cater to more specialised learning.
- The National School of Aesthetics, located in Christchurch, is the South Island’s leading provider in beauty therapy education. It offers courses on everything from facials and advanced beauty treatments to nail technology, massages, and other salon services. Other Christchurch schools offering similar courses include Beauty Therapy in Southern Institute of Technology and Hair, Beauty and Massage in Ara Institute of Canterbury.
- The University of Otago, Christchurch is one of seven schools of the University of Otago Division of Sciences – a public research collegiate university in Otago, New Zealand. The latter was founded in 1869, making it New Zealand’s oldest university. The Christchurch branch is an important institution for medical and health sciences education.
- The New Zealand Broadcasting School, located at the Ara Institute, is the leading provider of broadcast journalism, TV production, and radio training in New Zealand.
Research and Innovation
The city’s educational institutions also contribute significantly to research and innovation. The University of Canterbury, in particular, is known for its research capabilities in diverse fields like engineering, science, and social sciences.