A Northland principal whose classrooms are some of the worst in New Zealand has met with government officials today and now feels certain the school will be replaced.
Jim Luders, from Northland College in Kaikohe, made headlines last week after the Herald ran a story about the state of the damp, leaky school, which he described as a "ghetto environment".
A fix for the dilapidated 280-student high school had been deemed urgent in 2012, but as of last week no rebuild date had been set.
Following publication of his pupils' plight last week, the acting head of the ministry's education infrastructure service, Jerome Sheppard, flew to Northland to visit the school.
Today, while Mr Luders was in Wellington, he again met Sheppard and Associate Education minister Nikki Kaye to discuss the rebuild delays.
"It wasn't about her saving face or the Government or anything else, she was keen to ensure the ducks were in order . . . and to ensure the process would be followed correctly from now on," Mr Luders said.
The school would now be visited by the property manager, and the buildings would get an urgent upgrade, even though they were expected to only be there for a short period of time.
Funding the school had thought was frozen to go towards the rebuild would be able to be used for the upgrade.
Plans for a rebuild and a date for delivery is expected to be announced next month.
"I am extremely confident that everything has been addressed. We know now it's a priority," Mr Luders said.
"I think the wheels are going to be rolling quite quickly. They're going to get things cracking as fast as they possibly can."
He was grateful to have certainty.
"That's the thing we've wanted to whole way along. It gives us a lot more heart to know exactly where we stand. Moving guidelines are hard to get your head around."
He didn't hold a grudge over the delays, saying the ministry were looking after a lot of money and the school had got lost somewhere in the process.
"The end product is the kids are the winner out of this."