Our New Zealand online: .school.nz

1 April 2019
A blog post by Caleb Smith, Support Analyst, Domain Name Commission

Did you know, over 16% of New Zealand’s population is enrolled in school? In 2018, this was well over 800,000 students. While we may think of traditional schools as bricks and mortar, today many schools are also online. It is therefore important that these 800,000 New Zealanders have their own distinctive online presence.

The .nz domain name space has a unique connection to the education industry in New Zealand, with its offering of the .school.nz second level domain – meaning domain names can be registered that end in .school.nz. For example, a school might register “schoolname.school.nz”.

The Domain Name Commission has partnered with the InternetNZ Research Team to find data insights in the .school.nz space. View the full data infographic.

In February 2019, there were over 3,500 .school.nz domain names registered. Compared to the total number of .nz domain names (well over 700,000) this is a relatively small number. The importance of this space, however, cannot be understated. The .school.nz domain gives Kiwi schools and other educational institutions a unique and clear descriptor for their online presence.

map showing places where .school.nz is registeredWe can break down the numbers further, and see which regions and cities that registrants of .school.nz domain names call home. Unsurprisingly, this breakdown broadly follows the population distribution of New Zealand, with the greatest individual concentration of .school.nz domain names in large cities like Auckland, Christchurch, and Wellington; followed by mid-sized cities and regional centres. See the graph for more detail.

The majority of New Zealand schools prefer .school.nz for their email and website purposes. According to the Ministry of Education, there are 2,558 schools in New Zealand.

84% of Kiwi schools use a .school.nz domain name for email, and 82% use it for their website.

It’s clear that there is a strong preference for the .school.nz space among our educational institutions.

In general, security practices in the .school.nz domain name space are healthy, and users of .school.nz domain names are more likely to have implemented systems such as HTTPS.

Compared to the entire .nz domain name space (the register), the .school.nz space has:

  • more domains with DNSSEC (0.39%) than the register (0.23%)
  • double the number of domains using IPv6 for DNS, email and web (5.50%) compared to the register (2.04%)
  • a higher adoption of HTTPS (60.99%) compared to the registry (45.27%).

View the full infographic.

Registering a .school.nz domain name is similar to registering any other .nz domain name. If you’re thinking of registering one, or you know someone who might want one, you can review the Domain Name Commission’s list of authorised registrars (domain name providers) on the DNC website. There you can filter registers by some of the technical services they offer and see contact details for each company. For more information, contact the Domain Name Commission on 0800 101 151, or by email using info@dnc.org.nz