Christine Leighton and StAC students walking and talking outside Centennial Chapel

Why StAC?

Ngā Hua o StAC

St Andrew’s College is a leading independent, co-educational day and boarding school, offering a dynamic curriculum and a world-class learning environment. We aim to inspire and support our students to achieve their full potential and leave us as confident, well-rounded young adults, who are prepared for life in today’s rapidly-changing world.

Our large, picturesque campus, established in 1917 on Presbyterian principles, comprises four distinct learning centres – a Pre-school, Preparatory School, Middle School and Senior College, facilitating seamless transitions from Pre-school to Year 13. Blending a compelling mix of the traditional, contemporary and visionary, St Andrew's College provides diverse opportunities for students to excel and showcase their talents.

Strowan House on the St Andrew's College campus

"I love the strong Scottish traditions present at StAC. From Founders’ Day Assembly to the constantly playing bagpipes, it makes me feel as though I am part of something special."

Past Parent

Life is Co-ed

Life is co-ed, so it makes sense for students to spend their formative years in a highly engaged co-educational learning environment as they prepare for their future. This equips them to become valued, contributing members of the diverse global community awaiting them beyond their school years.

St Andrew’s College is proud to be the only independent school in the South Island offering Pre-school to Year 13 education for both boys and girls.

Co-ed students in the classroom.

Why an independent school

As an independent school, we have more freedom than a state school to explore innovative approaches to learning for a fast-changing world, tailoring our teaching to bring out the best in each student. We have our own independent board, we are not dependent on government or church funds, and funding is mainly through tuition.

We are less constrained by the government, so can operate in what we consider to be our students’ best interests. We are free to set our own curriculum incorporating subjects and learning experiences that align with our students’ needs and interests, ensuring we challenge and motivate our students at every level. However, excellence is about so much more than just academic success, our independence means we provide a well-rounded experience that nurtures personal growth, character development, and a sense of responsibility.

Preparatory students walking through the campus
Students in library holding books and a laptop looking upwards.

Our Vision and Spirit

St Andrew’s College holds a special place in the hearts and minds of generations of South Islanders. Mention our name, and a story about a family member or friend with a close connection to the school is not far away. Our vision is to provide young people with the roots and wings to flourish in an ever-changing world.

Drone photo of the St Andrew's College campus.

Our Campus

St Andrew’s College has one of the largest school campuses in Christchurch, with state-of the-art teaching and learning centres, and impressive cultural and sports facilities, spread across a spacious 13-hectare site on Papanui Road in the heart of the city.

Teacher and students talking at table with robotics equipment

Our People

Positive relationships between students and teachers, centred on learning, are a strength at St Andrew’s College. Our teachers value each student. They create a safe and collaborative learning environment, where students feel confident to inquire and seek support.

Students planting trees in the Christchurch redzone.

Our Partnerships and Social Responsibility

We are committed to fostering meaningful local and global partnerships to facilitate unique learning experiences, foster civic engagement and instil social responsibility. Our commitment extends to academic and service opportunities, exemplified by our long-term collaboration with the charity So They Can, aimed at benefiting underprivileged students, teachers, and families in African communities.

Early 1900s photo of Strowan House.

Our Heritage

St Andrew’s College was founded in 1917 in the Scottish Presbyterian tradition of the Christian faith. The values our forefathers held dear remain strong and true today. We celebrate our faith, traditions, achievements and individual strengths which bind us together as a caring community, and connect us to our past, our present and our future.

Rector presenting an award to a student at Prizegiving.

Academic Excellence

Every aspect of life at St Andrew’s is geared towards helping students reach their full academic potential and become lifelong learners. Our students consistently achieve well above the national average in NCEA and Scholarship examinations, and we regularly see our students achieving Top Scholar Scholarship Awards, which recognise the top mark scored in the country for each subject.