18 Jun 2015

'Drastic steps' needed at Hato Petera school

8:43 pm on 18 June 2015

Police are investigating an incident at Auckland's Hato Petera College, as more allegations about serious bullying surface.

Prominent Maori doctor Lance O'Sullivan says some cases are so serious they could end up before the courts.

Hato Petera College

Hato Petera College Photo: Google Maps

Dr Lance O'Sullivan

Dr Lance O'Sullivan Photo: Youtube

A meeting has been called on Sunday to discuss issues at the 77-student Maori school on the North Shore, which has been embroiled in controversy in the past, including property and personnel matters.

Police have received a report on an incident at the school and said they were looking at whether criminal offences were committed.

Dr O'Sullivan told Morning Report he had been on the school's board for eight months, and has two children who go there.

He said a number of issues had not been handled well and he was not prepared to sit on his hands any more. The reason he was taking "drastic steps" both publicly and in terms of governance change was that there was a wider problem.

Dr O'Sullivan said Hato Petera had put out some amazing leaders and had the chance to be great again.

The Ministry of Education said it had previously investigated Hato Petera College.

Ministry of Education spokesperson Katrina Casey said she was meeting the school's board and Dr O'Sullivan tomorrow to talk about the fresh concerns.

Ms Casey said in the last 12 months, the ministry had received two complaints relating to school matters and three relating to the hostel.

She said the allegations made by Dr O'Sullivan were serious and concerning.

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