Hato Petera College will remain open for the New Year but the Catholic Church says it will operate as a day-student college only with hostel facilities remaining closed.
College Principal John Matthews says “I’m surprised but pleased at the decision, but around 90 percent of our students utilise the hostel facilities so I’m unsure this will change the situation.”
The Catholic Diocese of Auckland announced the Minister of Education’s decision in a statement. Bishop Patrick Dunn says while he respects the decision, he still has serious concerns about the school’s viability.
In July 2016 the bishop initiated an extensive consultation process on the long-term viability of the College, with the possibility of closure. Its concerns being;
- the low roll
- the limited breadth of the curriculum being offered to students
- the College’s financial position
- the College’s breach of the Integration Agreement
- the breakdown of relationships between the Board of Trustees and the governing body responsible for the boarding hostel.
Matthews says the Board of Trustees and Hato Petera whanau have been kept in the dark by the Ministry and the Catholic Church since consultation rounds ended two months ago. But on Friday he was informed a decision had been made and the Ministry was requesting to meet tonight with the school and the Catholic Church at The Hato Petera Board of Trustees meeting. The Ministry and the Bishop are yet to arrive.
Matthews says the next step for Hato Petera is to source alternative accommodation for the students for the new year.