Central Auckland Specialist School opened on the 28th January 2018.  We were formed from the merger of Carlson School for Cerebral Palsy and Sunnydene Special School.  Both schools had a long history in central Auckland and offered targeted teaching and learning for students, some of whom have complex needs.  These areas of specialist knowledge and practices have been carried through into our new school.

All of our students qualify for Ongoing Resourcing Scheme (ORS) funding under the Ministry of Education, which provides for therapy and support staff input plus an additional teaching allocation so that we can maintain small class sizes.

We work closely with families through our Mahi Tahi system, which is intended to create a 2-way dialogue sharing information between home and school. These Parent Partnership meetings occur twice a year and focus on:

  • updating the Learner Portrait and Hauora Plan
  • sharing information about learning and progress
  • meeting the team.

Communication and co-operative work with families/whanau are fundamental to our success and occur formally and informally via daily notebooks, Seesaw, newsbooks, devices with recorded messages, phonecalls, email contact, appointments with health agencies and face-to-face meetings at home and at school.

We recognize that staff are our most valuable resource and support staff to engage in targeted professional development opportunities of every kind that are consistent with our strategic goals and support the learning of our students.

Along with a number of satellite classes in local schools in central Auckland, we also continue a successful Outreach service, supporting ORS funded students in their mainstream schools.

The Learner Portrait (“who I am and how I learn”) captures a stuent’s strengths, interests and helps us understand what best supports each student’s learning.

The Hauora Plan (“what I need to be ready for learning”) covers all the important information about health, behaviour, self-care, medical and so on.  It is a collaborative document that may link to more detailed plans if needed and ensures that every student’s health and well being is planned for.

The Learning Plan (“what I am learning”) is developed each term for the whole class.  Learning Intentions for Core Curriculum Areas (reading, writing, maths and communication) are listed and will show what students will be learning for the term.

The Learning Plan also includes learning intentions for Exploratory Curriculum Areas, that are the contextual, meaningful exploration of the learning areas from the New Zealand Curriculum.  This could look different in the varied areas of our school, with senior students having areas drawn from the adult curriculum and our new entrants exploring more play-based learning.

We have a range of spaces for teaching and learning. We understand the value that technology can add to the lives of our students and make every effort to provide the most up-to-date and effective technological support possible.

A new purpose-built facility will be constructed within the next 2-3 years, in the meantime we continue to operate across multiple sites.

Our Vision