The New Zealand government announced yesterday that the country’s borders will reopen to international students from July 31.

While that was news the team at Green School New Zealand welcomed with open arms, what was more pleasing was the government’s decision to also welcome international students under Year 9 – a decision that had been up in the air for the past six months.

With many international students currently sitting in Green School New Zealand’s enrolment system, Head of School, Caroline Rennie, said today’s news created a wave of excitement and optimism around the global school community.

“It has been such a distracting time for providers and families within this sector while we’ve been awaiting these decisions. We now have a sense of renewed confidence that we can move on and get ready to welcome diverse, inclusive, innovative and sustainably-focused families into our growing community.”

Founder, Michael Perrett, said the announcement provided some relief from the uncertainty schools had faced over the past year.

“In some cases, families have been turned away from various education providers and they are discouraged. I think New Zealand will have some work to do to repair relationships with the international student community.”

Education Minister Chris Hipkins will be travelling to USA and South America later this month to promote New Zealand as an international education destination. The government says travel opportunities are also being sought over the next six months to encourage enrolments for 2023.

Perrett said the Green School team were now looking forward to focusing less on politics and government reviews, and more on its goal to create a global community of learners making our world sustainable.

“Our staff have worked extremely hard over the past two years to make sure our current learners have received the highest quality education with no disruption, and we’re extremely thankful to them for that.

“We’re all feeling positive and are looking forward to getting on with creating a generation of empathetic, systems-thinking, entrepreneurial change-makers, from all around the world.”