Ambury Park Centre has a registered Independent school that offers subjects in the NZ core curriculum as well as riding and equine qualifications. There are 25 to 30 students in the school. These are children aged 13 to 18 who, for a variety of reasons, are not coping in or are not attending mainstream education.
At Ambury Park Centre, students receive a high level of one-on-one or small group instruction from registered teachers, teacher aides, and riding therapists. Together with equine and stable managers, the Academic team works collaboratively to co-ordinate programmes and address the needs of students individually. Each student has an Individual Development Plan (IDP) that reflects the goals and aspirations of staff, parents and students. Goals are designed to support their social and personal development.
The aim of the school is to help students gain confidence and appropriate skills to transition to the workplace or to further education. Most students stay at the school for at least a year, with some considering the option of a second or third year. The school’s approach to managing students’ learning and behaviour needs is pastoral, educational and therapeutic. There are clear expectations that all students co-operate and support one another. The inclusive culture is promoted by acknowledging and celebrating students' individual success. For many students, the experience at the Centre is transformative. They gain considerable benefit from teachers’ high expectation and optimism. For all students it is a second chance to experience success in education.