$14 million dollars will go towards the redevelopment of Northland College, following reports on the poor condition of its classrooms in June.
Associate Education Minister Nikki Kaye announced the investment in Kaikohe this morning and says, “We really believe in this community and can see the positive turnaround happening at the school. Today’s announcement confirms a strong commitment to invest in young people in Northland.”
Earlier this year Te Kāea visited Northland College and was given a guided tour around the premises by the Principal, Jim Luder.
Mr Luder displayed the dilapidated condition of the buildings by pushing his finger through a moulded ceiling in one of the ablution blocks.
He says the environment the students are forced to learn in is severely impacting their ability to stay focused on their work.
Students of Northland College also described the state of their school, as 'sad.'
Nikki Kaye says design work is well underway, and construction will start in early 2016.
“This is the culmination of a complex planning and consultation process involving the Ministry, the school and the community, particularly over the last 18 months. Most of the current infrastructure will be replaced with new, flexible learning spaces. Future growth to a roll of around 450, up from the current roll of around 310, will be accommodated for.”
The redevelopment is expected to include a multipurpose gym and hall, a new library and technology areas, as well as new changing rooms for the pool area.
Kaye says, “Northland College is an important school within the local community, and we want it to continue in the positive direction it’s now tracking in.”
Preparation work for the reconstruction is expected to start over the Christmas holiday period this year.
According to the Ministers office, the Northland College project is part of a $300 million programme to redevelop schools throughout New Zealand that have complex property issues.