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Education Minister Hekia Parata has today announced that work will begin on building two schools in greater Christchurch in April.
Work will begin on building the new Waikuku School in Pegasus Town, north of Christchurch, and on the complete rebuild of the earthquake-damaged Halswell Primary School in April.
Work is expected to be completed on both schools by early next year.
“The National-led Government is absolutely committed to rebuilding greater Christchurch following the earthquakes – that’s why we’re investing $1 billion into restoring and renewing the education sector in greater Christchurch over the next 10 years,” Ms Parata says.
“The face and makeup of greater Christchurch has changed following the earthquakes – there are new suburbs and developments being established around the region – and the education sector needs to respond to those changes as well.
“The earthquakes provided us with an opportunity to have a look at all the schools across greater Christchurch and see what we could do better.
“We have a chance to build brighter, more modern schools with great new facilities, and ensure all children are getting access to good, quality education within a close distance of where they live.
“Both Waikuku School and Halswell Primary School will showcase the kind of modern learning facilities that school communities and parents can look forward to for their children in greater Christchurch.
“This includes new facilities with flexible spaces, access to ultra-fast broadband, and energy-efficient buildings, with plenty of natural light and fresh air.
“These schools are designed to reflect the advice of education experts, to ensure that students can be taught using the latest techniques and technology.
“As repairs and rebuilds are done through the greater Christchurch schooling network, the Government is committed to ensuring these high-quality facilities are available at all schools.
“In addition to Waikuku School and Halswell Primary School, we also have current plans to build four brand-new schools in Canterbury over the next 10 years.
“We want to provide greater Christchurch with one of the best, most modern schooling networks in the country, which will serve communities for many years to come and ensure each and every child gets a great education,” Ms Parata says.
Waikuku School will cost about $15 million to build and will cater for up to 600 children. The complete rebuild of Halswell Primary School, which currently has about 560 children, will cost about $18 million.