A new school in Pyes Pa will open to primary age students in 2019.
Education Minister Hekia Parata yesterday signed an establishment notice for Pyes Pa West School in Tauranga as well as Flat Bush South East School in Auckland and Lincoln South School in Canterbury.
Pyes Pa West School will be built on Kennedy Road in Tauranga and will enrol Year 1-6 students from 2019, with Year 7 being introduced in 2020 and Year 8 in 2021. The new school was expected to reach a roll of about 650.
"The $18 million Pyes Pa West School will help meet the educational needs of the growing number of young families in Tauranga," Ms Parata said.
Ms Parata said the school would have state-of-the-art buildings that enabled the best possible teaching and learning environment for staff and students.
An establishment Board of Trustees would be appointed soon and would have responsibility for appointing a foundation principal and determining school policy and governance practices. The board would also play a significant role in designing the new school.
"There are many exciting opportunities ahead for the establishment Boards of Trustees and future principals as they develop schools that reflect the needs and aspirations of their local communities," Ms Parata said.
Ministry of Education's Katrina Casey said the Pyes Pa West and Lakes area was expected to grow from a current population of 14,000 to 20,000 by 2028 and the new school would support that growth.
"At the moment there is no local school in the Pyes Pa/Lakes development and surrounding schools do not have the capacity to meet the expected future demand," she said.
The ministry said details around when construction would start were still being finalised.
Tauranga MP Simon Bridges said Tauranga was "a real hotspot for young families".
"Our area is one of the best in the country for raising kids and it's fantastic to see such big investment from our Government in educating those kids. This new school will cater to the growing population in The Lakes and Pyes Pa."
Bay of Plenty MP Todd Muller said having a modern, future-proofed school would allow students to get the best possible education.
"With large-scale housing developments happening across the region, it's important our schools have the necessary capacity."
Pyes Pa School Board of Trustees chairwoman Tania Stokes said the new school would be a welcome addition to the community.
The ministry had responded to initial fears Pyes Pa School would lose its transport entitlements and students by altering the zone proposed for the new school.
She said the community consultation had been extensive and the school's community had made their voice heard.
"It's a much-needed school because the area is expanding rapidly and a lot of families are moving into the area," she said.
- Statistics New Zealand figures showed the number of children up to the age of 14 in Tauranga City increased by 7500 between 1996 and 2013. Between 2013 and 2018, the number would have increased by another 1900, with a further 1200 children expected to be added by 2023.
- In the Western Bay the number of children up to the age of 14 increased by 400 between 1996 and 2013. It was projected to have jumped another 300 between 2013 and next year. A further 400 children were expected to be added by 2023.