Longburn Adventist College

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Longburn Adventist College
Longburn Adventist College logo.png
100 Walkers Road, RD 7, Palmerston North, 4477
Coordinates 40°23′22″S 175°33′27″E / 40.3894°S 175.5575°E / -40.3894; 175.5575Coordinates: 40°23′22″S 175°33′27″E / 40.3894°S 175.5575°E / -40.3894; 175.5575
Type State-integrated
Day & Boarding
Motto In Christ we educate, encourage and empower
Denomination Seventh-day Adventist Church
Established 1908
Ministry of Education Institution no. 191
Principal Brendan van Oostveen
Years 713
Gender Coeducational
School roll 246[1] (February 2017)
Socio-economic decile 5M[2]

Longburn Adventist College is an integrated co-educational Christian school in New Zealand for years 7 to 13. It is located just west of Palmerston North in the Manawatu District in the small dairy town of Longburn. It is a part of the Seventh-day Adventist education system, the world's second largest Christian school system.[3][4][5][6]


The college was founded by the Seventh-day Adventist Church in 1908 and was originally sited at Pukekura, near Cambridge. The founder principal was Pastor Frank Chaney from Massachusetts. He was the principal, and was responsible for the design and construction of the original school, built largely with volunteer student labour.[7]

A decision was made to relocate the college to Longburn in 1913 to be closer to the centre of the country's population at that time. Initially the college at Longburn was known as the 'Oroua Missionary College'.

In the early days of the college, the focus was on training young people for missionary service and most students worked, as well as studied, to pay their fees.[7] The college ran a dairy farm, commercial vegetable garden, glasshouses, a basket factory and a lampshade business and it was from these enterprises that students earned their fees. Subjects originally offered included building construction, agriculture, secretarial and Bible work.[7]

After World War II[edit]

Following World War II, secondary school classes were added to the courses offered at Longburn and in the 1960s the first year of a BA in Theology was offered.[7] Primary teacher training was offered in the early 1970s until 1990. Up until the 1970s most Longburn students were boarders, but day students began to increase in numbers as local residents took advantage of the secondary schooling offered at Longburn.

In the late 1980s the college began to struggle for student numbers as the fees needed to run a private school excluded a number of potential students.[7]

In 1993 Longburn became a fully state-integrated school operated by the Seventh-day Adventist Church and student numbers have increased to around the 280-300 mark each year.

Longburn Adventist College is now a Year 7-13 school with the majority of the students being day students, mainly from the Palmerston North area.

Bruce Sharp, Principal from 2006 to 2015[edit]

In 2006 the school's roll was approved by the Ministry of Education for an increase. This was met with much relief, meaning more options available for students to choose from as well as helping the school to rise up from the financial difficulties it had faced since before previous principal Brian Mercer. In 2006 Mercer and vice principal Terry Rogers resigned from their roles to return to Australia. The new principal announced was Bruce Sharp who was already a teacher at the school when he applied for the position.[8]

L.A.C. House[edit]

'L.A.C. House' became the official title for the Longburn Adventist College Boys' and Girls' Dormitories on August 29, 2013.[9]

The motto for L.A.C. House is "Kia Puāwai Tātou | The Lord's Plans" based on Jeremiah 29:11 [10]

New Principal[edit]

In 2016 Mr Brendan van Oostveen took up the role of principal at LAC. Mr van Oostveen was previously Deputy Principal at LAC from 2006 and prior to that he was a teacher at Tamatea College in the Hawkes Bay.[11]


The school celebrated its 100th anniversary in March 2008 by publishing a book.

Former names[edit]

  • Pukekura Training School (Cambridge) 1908-1912
  • Oroua Missionary College 1913-1923
  • New Zealand Missionary College 1924-1966
  • Longburn College 1967-1985
  • Longburn Adventist College 1986-


The schools curriculum consists primarily of the standard courses taught at college preparatory schools across the world. All students are required to take classes in the core areas of English, Basic Sciences, Mathematics, a Foreign Language, and Social Sciences.

Spiritual aspects[edit]

All students take religion classes each year that they are enrolled. These classes cover topics in biblical history and Christian and denominational doctrines. Instructors in other disciplines also begin each class period with prayer or a short devotional thought, many which encourage student input. Weekly, the entire student body gathers together in the auditorium for an hour-long chapel service. Outside the classrooms there is year-round spiritually oriented programming that relies on student involvement.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Directory of Schools - as at 6 March 2017". New Zealand Ministry of Education. Retrieved 10 April 2017. 
  2. ^ "Decile Change 2014 to 2015 for State & State Integrated Schools". Ministry of Education. Retrieved 12 February 2015. 
  3. ^ http://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/Opinion/2010/1115/For-real-education-reform-take-a-cue-from-the-Adventists"the[permanent dead link] second largest Christian school system in the world has been steadily outperforming the national average – across all demographics."
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-03-23. Retrieved 2016-03-31. 
  5. ^ "Department of Education, Seventh-day Adventist Church". Retrieved 2010-06-18. 
  6. ^ Rogers, Wendi; Kellner, Mark A. (April 1, 2003). "World Church: A Closer Look at Higher Education". Adventist News Network. Archived from the original on July 24, 2011. Retrieved 2010-06-19. 
  7. ^ a b c d e Longburn Adventist College (2010). "History of LAC". Retrieved 2010-08-13. 
  8. ^ November 15, 2006 School Newsletter
  9. ^ August 2013, L.A.C. House FYI Newsletter
  10. ^ L.A.C. House website
  11. ^ January 2016, LAC Community Newsletter

External links[edit]