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Board To Consult On Future Of Queen Vic School

Trust Board To Consult On Future Of Queen Victoria School

The chairperson of the St Stephens & Queen Victoria Schools Trust Board, Rangi Pouwhare, today gave an assurance that no final decision on the future of Queen Victoria will be made without consulting all interested parties.

The school’s future is being reviewed by the Trust Board and the Ministry of Education because of a falling roll. The Minister of Education, the Hon Trevor Mallard has agreed to begin a consultation process with the Trust Board to determine what future the school should have.

“Last year, the Board’s view was that the best interests of young Maori would be served by the closure of St Stephens and Queen Victoria and the construction of a new school on a new site.

“We still hold that opinion, but we recognise that there are other views that must be taken into consideration. There are a number of possible options open to us and we don’t intend to proceed with any one of them until we have talked to parents, caregivers, students, staff, management and any other interested parties,” she said.

“In the case of Queen Victoria, our sole concern is to improve the quality of education available to young Maori women. We will obviously be drawn towards the option that best meets this concern.

“It is impossible to escape the reality that 58 pupils is considerably below the optimum roll when it comes to providing skilled staff in a range of subjects and covering the overheads associated with a boarding school.

“We are looking forward to meeting the people with an interest in the school to hear their views on what is best for the children. We will be contacting interested parties and arranging hui to discuss the situation with them.

“Until we go through the consultation process, I don’t believe it is appropriate for me to comment further on the school’s future.”.

Ms Pouwhare said any final decision will be made jointly by the Trust Board and the Minister of Education. If a decision is made to close Queen Victoria, the school will remain open until the end of the 2001 school year.

Ends


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