16 Jun 2014

Court action to block commissioner

7:10 pm on 16 June 2014

The former board of Te Kura Kaupapa Maori O Whangaroa in Northland is taking court action to try to stop the Ministry of Education from sending in a commissioner.

The ministry last week dissolved the board and appointed a commissioner to oversee fresh trustee elections, after an earlier ballot was not carried out properly.

The board failed to send out trustee nomination forms to whanau or advertise elections in the newspaper in May last year.

Its former chairperson, Terry Smith, said the board sent notices out in eight school newsletters and held four whanau hui instead.

The ministry actions were heavy handed and that the board had been operating effectively for more than a year, he said.

The board had thought it was working with the ministry on other options, and the process had been flawed.

At a hui last night, parents gave full support to file an application to the High Court for an injunction order and judicial review of the ministry's actions, Mr Smith said.