Canterbury education moving ahead

Christchurch Central Electorate
Friday, March 3, 2017

 

For a lot of Canterbury kids, much of their young lives have involved moving - many have moved houses and schools some have even moved towns. Usually as a result of Canterbury’s moving ground.

A good education can provide stability, and that’s why we have been so focused on ensuring young people in Canterbury have the facilities they need to enable a good education.

Schools are the focal point for Kiwi communities. Not only do they facilitate the achievement and success of our young people, they also bring together parents and teachers and, as we’ve seen here in Canterbury, provide a place to gather and support each other.

At the beginning of this school year, Christchurch kids had an opportunity to celebrate moving. The opening of Wainoni’s Haeata Community Campus has meant 955 young people are moving into a comfortable, modern, purpose-built new school.  

Our Prime Minister, the Rt Hon Bill English, together with Minister of Education Hekia Parata, officially opened the new campus on March 2. This project is part of the $1.137 billion Christchurch Schools Rebuild programme.

Christchurch’s eastern suburbs were some of the worst affected by the earthquakes and it will be wonderful to see Haeata in full flight, revitalising education in the east and reflecting the dynamism of the locals.

Since the earthquakes, we have built ten brand new schools in the greater Christchurch region, with space for more than 6,500 young Canterburians. This Government has made sure these new schools are modern and able to provide young people with the tools they need to succeed in a global environment.

Building state-of-the-art learning environments ensures our young people and their teachers can take advantage of the best technology and styles of teaching to ensure they receive a truly 21st century education.

Haeata’s foundation Principal Andy Kai Fong, along with the Establishment Board of Trustees, should be hugely proud of the work they’ve done to set up the new school.

Giving young people the best possible start to their lives through high-quality education is one of the most important investments we can make as a Government.  

The Government investment in education is at its highest ever - over $11 billion. Our spending on school property has exceeded $5 billion.

Funding for schooling has gone up by 35% since 2008/9 while student numbers have increased by only 3.6%. 

In fact, no other OECD country spends a higher percentage of its public funding on education as New Zealand. 

Haeata is a wonderful asset for greater Christchurch and the return on this investment will see a new generation of high-achieving young Kiwis and their city moving towards an exciting future.