Parents take Kawerau school fight to court
Sun, 01 Jul 2012 4:29p.m.
Parents fighting to save Kawerau Intermediate from closure are heading to the High Court at Rotorua tomorrow.
The school's board says it will challenge the closure in court after talks with Education Minister Hekia Parata last week failed to halt the closure plan.
Parents want a separate intermediate school in Kawerau, arguing a proposed combined decile-one school will put young children at risk.
"Parents, caregivers and the wider community understand and know what is best for children's education in Kawerau. They are fully aware of the extreme danger in which children as young as 11 will be placed in the proposed year seven to 13 school," the board said.
"The question is not if, but when a serious incident occurs as a result of putting younger children into a decile-one school in the Eastern Bay of Plenty will the minister, ministry and those involved be prepared to accept responsibility?"
A high youth suicide rate, teen pregnancies, gang culture and poverty in the region serve to heighten the risk for children, the board says.
The Ministry of Education is proposing to close Kawerau Intermediate and Kawerau College at the end of 2012 and create a new year seven to 13 school on the site of Kawerau College.
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