Wakatipu High principal Steve Hall is delighted an opening date’s been set for the relocation of the school to Frankton.
The Government has revealed the new school at Remarkables Park is proposed to open in January 2018.
Hall says confirmation of this opening date is “an exciting announcement for the Wakatipu”.
“It’s nice to have some certainty around the date ’cos the community’s wanted to know what that date is.”
Halls says earlier indications were that the school would open in 2017, “but this now puts some certainty on the date”.
“The prospect of a state-of-the-art modern learning environment in the Wakatipu opens the door to many exciting opportunities for the school to continue to grow in its important role in the local community.
“2018, however, means that only current Year 9 students will attend the new school, and so our focus remains firmly on delivering a great all-round education to our current students at our current site.”
The date comes in a press release yesterday (Tuesday) from Education Minister Hekia Parata and Associate Minister Nikki Kaye which announced that the building and maintenance of Wakatipu High, two new schools in Christchurch and another one in Auckland could be delivered using a public private partnership (PPP).
“The Ministry advises that the use of a PPP for this bundle of four schools could deliver savings of two to eight per cent over traditional procurement by the Ministry,” Parata says.
Hall says, in response: “While we will learn more about the PPP model, it relates to the construction and maintenance of the school – the delivery of education remains the responsibility of the board of trustees and principal.”
The Education Minister says a big benefit of a PPP is that professional facilities managers take care of school property, freeing up school staff time for teaching and learning.
Hall agrees this would be a welcome benefit.
“Very senior people in the school have been responsible for property – cleaning, building, fixing, painting, boilers, all this stuff.”
The press release also estimates Wakatipu High’s estimated final roll at its new site will be 1200, compared with 750 students at the school currently.