Christchurch, New Zealand Earthquake
Education New Zealand:
earthquake which struck near Christchurch, New Zealand early
on Saturday morning has
made headlines around the world, and affected local and international students in the
Christchurch and Canterbury area. Other regions of New Zealand were not affected by the
Education New Zealand would like to provide an overview of the current situation to those of you
with Christchurch and Canterbury based students, as well as their parents and other interested
Although the earthquake was strong enough to damage a large number of buildings in
Christchurch and nearby suburbs, there were thankfully no deaths associated with the event,
and most injuries were minor.
As a precaution, all schools in Christchurch are to remain closed on September 6 and 7 while
the buildings are assessed for structural damage and sanitation. The University of Canterbury
and Lincoln University are closed for the week, and currently plan to resume classes on
September 13. CPIT is closed on September 6, and providing updates on their website going
forward. For other institutions, it is safe to assume that they will be closed on September 6 and
7 if they are located in Christchurch city. The dates when institutions are able to re-open will be
dependent on them passing safety checks.
Any students whose homes have been declared unsafe are able to find temporary shelter in
designated centres until other arrangements can be made. Some phone lines are still down, so
communications may be difficult for several days. As schools are closed, you may also have
difficulty checking on the status of students for the next few days. Please be patient, and know
that there have been no reports of badly injured students.
We know that it is worrying to have students involved in an event such as this. We would like to
ensure you that the authorities in Christchurch are working to restore services to the city as
quickly as possible, and that all students have access to emergency services as needed. Power
has been restored to over 90% of homes as of Monday morning, and hospitals are open for
The Ministry of Education is providing further updates regarding schools on their website
www.minedu.govt.nz. We will also update you with any major news regarding the situation.