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Proposal announced for Taihape school network

Proposal announced for Taihape school network

Education Minister Trevor Mallard announced today a proposed new network for Taihape schools that could unlock $4.1 million for local education.

"This review is about making sure local education stays strong and of a high quality to withstand the pressures of declining rolls and the current surplus capacity of 727 student places. I want education resources to be spent on teaching children, and not on maintaining under-used or empty buildings," Trevor Mallard said.

"It will also result in approximately an extra $768,000 in education development resources going to the proposed new school, $219,000 for joint education initiatives with other schools, and $3.1 million extra for property work at the new school. This is in addition to the funds that schools involved in the merger will be entitled to under their five-year property plans.

"The review has been a chance for everyone to share ideas and work together to ensure Taihape schools provide a quality education that is sustainable well into the future," Trevor Mallard said.

Proposals under the review are:retain Mataroa School, Mangaweka School, Moawhango School, Papanui Junction School, Pukeokahu School, Rangiwaea School, Taoroa School and Waiouru School;merge Taihape Primary School and Taihape College to form a composite (Year 1 - 15) school on the Taihape Primary School site with Taihape College as the continuing school subject to rapid agreement on the purchase of additional land; andthat the boards of trustees of Mataroa, Papanui Junction School and Rangiwaea School enter into consultation with their parent communities about the development of a combined board between the schools.

Trevor Mallard expects to make his final decisions in April after further consultation with the schools involved. Any further submissions are to be made through their boards of trustees. The Ministry of Education will then work closely with schools to ensure a smooth transition so changes are in place for the 2005 school year.

The board of the continuing school would manage the transition period and govern the proposed new school until elections can be held. At least one person will be seconded to that board from each of the other merging schools.

The Ministry's submission to the Minister will be available on the network review section of the ministry's website at 4pm.


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