19 Feb 2013

Kura intends to stay put

6:48 am on 19 February 2013

A Maori language medium school in Christchurch is prepared to stay put and has no plans to move, despite a Government plan for it to relocate.

In November 2012, Te Whanau Tahi in Spreydon vehemently opposed an Education Ministry plan to merge it with Te Kura Whakapumau i Te Reo Tuturu o Waitaha and presented a submission to the Government to abandon the move.

Education Minister Hekia Parata announced on Monday that an amalgamation will not be happening.

However, one of the kura needs to be relocated so that Maori medium schooling is available in the north of Christchurch.

Te Whanau Tahi Board of Trustees Chairman, Huata Martindale said the kura is against shifting.

He said for a move would be huge because the land the school is built on has become like a marae for the tamariki and that cannot be simply picked up and moved.

He said the school hall for example is named after the late father of the tumuaki (principal) - which is very significant and, like a marae, cannot be picked up and taken somewhere else.

Mr Martindale said that when Te Whanau Tahi has its final consultation with school staff, board members and the parents, it is very likely the whole whanau will agree that the kura should remain on site.

The minister has given all the schools affected by the interim decisions until Friday, 28 March, to provide her with any feedback before she makes her final decision.