New Process Initiated Re Future of Salisbury School
New process initiated re future of Salisbury School
The Minister of Education Hon Nikki Kaye spoke with Salisbury School Board Chair and Relieving Principal on Friday, informing them that she will not be making a decision on the school’s future until after the election.
The current consultation on potential school closure is still in place and if the Minister decides to close the school she has said it would not be until at least the end of term two 2018. The school had been told earlier this year that the school would be open until at least the end of this current school year, so this latest timing means a further six month extension.
In a letter to Board of Trustees chair John Kane, the Minister has said that she “wanted to ensure any decision was soundly based and took into account the Trustee’s views. I am not yet in a position to make a final decision and I have asked my officials to explore possible options, including those you have suggested.”
Board Chair John Kane says the school is pleased to have an opportunity to work more closely with the Ministry on potential options for the school’s future.
“The National Director of Special Education began the new process by meeting with us on Monday,” says Kane. “This is the first time that discussions have been initiated by an Education Minister or Ministry official about how we might stay open rather than close.
“The board of trustees, school staff and all our supporters have tirelessly held our ground about the importance of single sex residential special schooling in New Zealand and finally we are being heard by this Government. We have never given up. We have offered a sound proposal that would expand the range of needs the school meets and are pleased to be able to work with the Ministry on this and other possible options, particularly relating to resourcing and the enrolment process.
“This is not to say that our future is guaranteed, and we will keep open the option of Human Rights Commission proceedings, but we welcome the chance for a proper dialogue about the changes the education system needs to enable young women with intellectual disabilities, including autism, to have the choice of attending Salisbury.”