The president of the Te Tai Tokerau Principals Association is challenging the Government to release a report on the controversial Whangaruru charter school.

Of the five charter schools that opened this year, reports for four of the schools from the Education Review Office were released in the past month.

However, the report for Te Kura Hourua ki Whangaruru has been withheld after an assurance to the Northern Advocate two months ago it was being prepared for "imminent public release".

In the first term the kura faced many issues, including student drug abuse on campus, students using gang signs, bullying, declining enrolment and the resignation of a co-director.


The school, located on a farm 65km northwest of Whangarei, also faced criticism from the ERO after a visit in April, which found fault with many areas, including curriculum and school morale.

Pat Newman said he was annoyed that the ministry had dismissed his publicly aired concerns earlier in the year yet had not released the report.

"It's interesting to me that they have only released the good ones," Mr Newman said. "It can't be that good if they are holding it back".

"Are they going to give them a month? A year? Ten years?" he said.

The Northern Advocate requested information on the kura, including the ERO report, as an OIA on September 22 and was informed on October 1 it had been refused as the information would soon be publicly available.

The ministry's head of sector enablement and support, Katrina Casey, said the review was extended to give the kura time for issues to be addressed.

"Te Kura Hourua ki Whangaruru has had well-publicised difficulties," Ms Casey said. "We are satisfied that the school has addressed many of the issues that it faced earlier in the year, but note that there remain a few areas which it is yet to resolve.

"The school is in the process of responding to the review. Once it has done that, the report will be released."


Manager of Te Kura Hourua ki Whangaruru, Makere Laurence-Bade, said she was restricted by the ministry on what she could say in regards to the ERO report.

"If they haven't said anything then we're not allowed to either," Ms Laurence-Bade said. When asked directly whether the kura had addressed the issues cited by the ministry as the reason for the delay in release, she said: "Well, I think we have".

Ms Laurence-Bade said the issues cited by the ministry related to the start of the year and they had been overcome since then.