Most schools expect fewer students

Two-thirds of South Canterbury high schools expect to have fewer students enrolled in 2014.

The Ministry of Education said Timaru Girls' High School was the only school likely to have a larger roll, rising from 400.

Geraldine High School has the largest predicted drop, down 25 from 575 this year.

Principal Juliette Hayes explained the drop in numbers.

"We have a small cohort of year 13 students coming through, plus the intake cohort from Geraldine primary is a lot smaller than this year," she said.

"There is a large group coming through the following year."

Timaru Boys' High School's roll is predicted to have 20 fewer students, from 701 to 681. Rector Kevin O'Sullivan said "there are simply fewer students out there".

In contrast to Timaru Girls', Timaru's other all-girls school, Craighead, has a predicted roll of 357 for 2014, 12 students down.

Waimate High School's roll is predicted to drop 23, from 308 students, while Opihi College is likely to have 14 fewer students, from 304.

Roncalli College has a predicted roll of 508, down two students from its average roll of 510. Principal Chris Comeau said in his experience the projected roll growth was "quite conservative".

Mackenzie College had a roll of around 207 this year. Next year it would probbaly be 200.

Both Mountainview High School and Twizel Area School said their rolls would remain stable, at 530 and 200 respectively.

The Government estimated rolls for 2014 based on current roll numbers and demographic projections for the area.

The Timaru Herald