EDUCATION

Minister considers issues raised by judicial review

Wednesday 12 December 2012, 3:52PM
By Hekia Parata
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TE AROHA

Education Minister Hekia Parata says the safety of children is paramount and was at the forefront during the process to expand the Intensive Wraparound Service and close two and retain two residential schools.

Ms Parata says she will carefully consider yesterday’s High Court’s decision on the closure of Salisbury School.

“The judgment identified issues that I now need to consider in any fresh decision about the school. I will take some time to do that but I am not going to appeal this decision.’’

“I realise that the changes in residential special education has created an uncertain environment for students and their families at Salisbury School. I do not wish this decision to continue that uncertainty so as well as the existing option of the Intensive Wraparound Service, Salisbury School will remain open next year for students currently attending the school.

“The Board of Salisbury has been advised of this as well as my intention to meet with them early in the New Year.’’

“All of us want the best outcomes for learners with complex special education needs. I am committed to making sure that happens.

“I will now seek advice on the matters raised in the judgment.”

Notes

  • There are 44 learners currently enrolled at Salisbury. Around half of these learners are due to leave the school and return home at the end of this term. As is normal practise Salisbury School has worked on the transition back home for this group and the Ministry will offer additional support if required.
  • The maximum time any girl can stay at Salisbury is two years.
  • Existing enrolment criteria means that no young person with a history of sexualised behaviour can be enrolled in a residential special school.