Education and the law

General guidance on a range of legal issues for schools.

The materials are not a substitute for specific legal, governance, HR or industrial relations advice.

Changes to Education and the law

We are currently updating this section of the website to reflect the changes to the Education Act which took effect in May 2017.

The NZSTA website has comprehensive information on the changes and their implications for schools:

Education Act update – NZSTA website

Click on the headings below to view common legal questions, answers and topics in each area.

Basic principles of law for school leaders

School leaders have many responsibilities to groups and individuals within the school community. You don’t need to be a lawyer to be a school leader, but you do need to understand how natural justice, judge-made law and legislation affect your role. These basic principles will help you.

Further legal advice

The Ministry of Education contracts the New Zealand School Trustees Association (NZSTA) to provide governance advice and expert HR and industrial relations advisory services.

NZSTA Advisory and support centre

You can also seek legal advice from a law firm approved by your school’s liability insurer.

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