Prior participation in early childhood education in New Zealand territorial authorities

Excluding Auckland, year ended March 2017, % of children starting school


Prior participation rates and numbers: It shows many children have regularly attended Early Childhood Education (ECE) in the six months prior to starting school. The prior ECE participation rate is defined as (number who had regularly attended ECE /(number who had regularly attended ECE + number who had not regularly attended ECE))*100. The number of students with unknown prior ECE attendance has been excluded (from both the numerator and denominator) when calculating participation rates. The value 'n' is used for cells with small numbers of new entrants (with known attendance less than 20). Prior participation rates in these cases often are subject to large fluctuations and may not provide a very reliable basis for comparison with other categories.
Ethnic group: The ethnic groups that the child belongs to coded to; European/ Pākehā, Māori, Pasifika, Asian, and Other. Students with unknown ethnicity are not shown separately but are included in the Totals. Students who identify with more than one ethnic group are counted in each group they identified with. Therefore, the number of students in the 'Total' column will generally be less than the sum of the students in each group.
Distribution of weekly hours: The number of hours a child regularly attended ECE within a week. The figures used for calculating the distribution rates (percent of children) exclude children that reported prior ECE participation but did not know the weekly hours of their ECE attendance.
Distribution of number of years attended: The number of months/years a child regularly attended ECE. The figures used for calculating the distribution rates (percent of children) exclude children that reported prior ECE participation but did not know the number of months/years of their ECE attendance.
School decile: The school decile of the school that the Year 1 child is enrolled in. It is a measure of socio-economic status, so the higher its value, the better is the socio-economic status of the area where the school is located. In tables with numbers of children attended in ECE by decile, the total also includes those children attending home schooling, the Correspondence School and students whose school campus has no decile information available.


The data in these tables relates to all New Zealand citizens or residents who started schooling during the 12 months prior to the end of the month shown.

Data provided by

Ministry of Education

Dataset name

Prior Participation in Early Childhood Education March 2017


How to find the data

At URL provided, select 'Prior participation in ECE'

Import & extraction details

File as imported: Prior Participation in Early Childhood Education March 2017

From the dataset Prior Participation in Early Childhood Education March 2017, this data was extracted:

  • Sheet: PPN5
  • Range: D5:AC2644
  • Provided: 52,260 data points

This data forms the table Early Childhood Education - Prior participation in ECE by ethnicity and Territorial Authority Dec 2010 – Mar 2017.

Dataset originally released on:

May 2017

Method of collection/Data provider

The source of data for this indicator changed in 2010 from school roll returns to ENROL, an electronic enrolment system used by schools.  An overlap of data from both sources in 2009 has allowed a continuous and consistent series of figures to be constructed for the whole 2000-2013 period.  While these adjustments  were made in the participation rates, it was not possible to estimate the number of children who attended ECE prior to 2010 in a consistent way that would match the 2010 figures .