Govt to spend $17m on two Waikato school 'redevelopments'

Education Minister Hekia Parata in her Beehive office, Parliament, Wellington. 14 September 2016 New Zealand Herald Photograph by Mark Mitchell.
Education Minister Hekia Parata in her Beehive office, Parliament, Wellington. 14 September 2016 New Zealand Herald Photograph by Mark Mitchell.

Cambridge High School and Ngaruawahia High School Waikato will both undergo major redevelopments at a cost of $17 million.

Both schools have issues such as leaky buildings or classrooms that are old and in poor condition, so this will be welcome news for their communities, said education Minister Hekia Parata.

She announced the details of the redevelopments today.

Construction at both schools is expected to begin in 2018.

"Around $8 million will be invested in Ngaruawahia High School, and around $9 million will be spent redeveloping Cambridge High School," she said.

At the Ngaruawahia secondary school will an existing classroom block will be demolished and replaced with a new block that will also function as a marae support space outside of school hours.

Existing technology and administration blocks will also be refurbished, and seismic strengthening will be carried out on some buildings.

At Cambridge High School a new two-storey block will be built to replace an old 1953 block that Parata said was "past its use-by date".

A number of other buildings will be "remediated to address weathertightness issues".

"The redevelopment will also see the total number of teaching spaces at the school increased to help accommodate a growing roll," said Parata.

"As with all major redevelopments, the focus at both schools will be on providing flexible learning spaces that support an innovative learning environment."

Ngaruawahia High School is the sole secondary school in its township, and is in discussions with local primary schools about establishing a Community of Learning.

Cambridge High School, which is the only local state secondary school, is a member of the Cambridge Community of Learning.

"Communities of Learning are about schools collaborating to help students achieve their full potential," said Parata.

"We want students to excel no matter where they go to school, and providing the right learning environment is an important part of this. These investments are further evidence of the Government's commitment to modernise and expand schools across New Zealand."

- NZ Herald

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