28 Jun 2016

Board optimistic Chch school could remain open

4:47 pm on 28 June 2016

Christchurch's Redcliffs School will learn next week whether it has been successful in convincing Minister of Education Hekia Parata to let it remain open.

Education Minister Hekia Parata says the unstable cliff behind the Redcliffs School makes the site unsuitable for a school.

Redcliffs School is to learn if the cliffs behind the school are too unstable to allow the school to return to the site in the suburb of Redcliffs. Photo: RNZ / Rachel Graham

Board of trustee members will learn of the school's fate at a meeting with Ms Parata in Wellington next Thursday.

Redcliffs School was closed following the Canterbury earthquakes, and students and classes were shifted to a temporary site in Sumner.

Ms Parata has said an unstable cliff behind the school made the site unsuitable, and in November she announced an interim decision to permanently close the school.

The school has made several submissions to the minister since then in an attempt to put their case for keeping it open.

The community has also staged a 1000-strong protest, and there have been more than http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/regional/283010/minister-needs-more-time-for-redcliffs-school-decision 2500 submissions sent] opposing the school's closure.

People protesting closure of Redcliffs School

About 1000 protested in April last year to against the proposed closure the school. Photo: Caleb & Tom Ltd

School spokesman Mark Robberds said yesterday the board was feeling confident of a positive outcome after commissioning a new geotechnical report on the school site.

Mr Robberds said the new report provided a robust solution to the minister's concerns about possible disruption to education at Redcliffs by the cliff face.

Principal Rose McInerney said the board had put a human face on the school's situation in a recent meeting with the minister.

She said she felt confident that the minister understood the community's passion for its local school.

Redcliffs School

Redcliffs School. Photo: Caleb & Tom Ltd

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