3 Apr 2024

Charter Schools establishment board to aim for openings in 2025

2:35 pm on 3 April 2024
David Seymour

Photo: RNZ / Samuel Rillstone

Associate Education Minister David Seymour has appointed eight people to a board tasked with helping reintroduce charter schools for 2025.

Chaired by former St Cuthbert's College principal Justine Mahon, the Charter School | Kura Hourua Establishment Board will provide strategic oversight and advice on the model for the schools, and work with the Ministry of Education on their establishment and ongoing management.

Reintroducing charter schools - also called "partnership" or Kura Hourua schools - and allowing state schools to become one, is a National-ACT coalition agreement, and the coalition's 2nd-quarter action plan commits to introducing legislation allowing this by 30 June.

Mahon will be joined by Glen Denham, John Fiso, Dr Nina Hood, Neil Paviour-Smith, Rōpata Taylor, Doran Wyatt and Professor Elizabeth Rata.

Seymour said Mahon had considerable experience as a teacher and principal from primary to tertiary level, including teacher training and development.

The other members would "bring deep knowledge and expertise from across the education sector and other key areas that are important for the model's success, including commercial, property and private sector expertise".

He said the new model for charter schools would be informed by the "pilot" set up under the National-led government with ACT in 2012.

They were aiming for the first schools to be able to open under the new model from next year.

The 12 remaining charter schools had all become state-integrated schools by 2018, after the Labour government legislated to scrap the model.

"Notably, charter schools were subject to high levels of monitoring and accountability and were shut down when they did not achieve the outcomes they were funded to achieve. State schools don't have this accountability," Seymour said.

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