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Education Minister Nikki Kaye today announced the formal establishment of the new $11 million primary school for Halswell in Christchurch, which will now open in 2019.

“The Halswell area is experiencing rapid growth, and we’ve responded to that by bringing forward the planned date for Halswell West Primary School, to ensure children will be able to attend a local school,” says Ms Kaye.

The new school, which is part of the Christchurch Schools Rebuild programme, was originally scheduled to open in 2022.

“The Government is committed to ensuring that our school network supports communities’ needs, especially in areas where there’s sustained population growth,” says Ms Kaye.

Halswell West Primary School will be situated on the corner of Richmond Ave and Killarney Ave, near the new residential subdivision of Knights Stream Park, between Prebbleton and Oaklands.

It will cater for children from years 1 to 8 and will initially have space for 450 students, with the capacity to expand to accept up to 700.

“I’m pleased today’s announcement reflects the wishes of the local community in Halswell. A new primary school was the preferred option following community consultation,” says Ms Kaye.

“Construction of Stage One of the school will start early in 2018.

“There will be multiple stages to the build, with the second stage beginning when roll projections show that more spaces are required. Ultimately the school will be designed to accommodate 700 students.”

An Establishment Board of Trustees will be appointed to begin the process of developing the school. 

“The Establishment Board of Trustees has a vital role to play,” says Ms Kaye.

“They will be responsible for appointing staff, including the principal and working with the Ministry of Education through the design and construction phases to set up the school.

“This is an incredibly exciting time for the Halswell community. The opportunities that a brand new school allows are truly eye opening when it comes to teaching practice and how students learn.

“I’ve visited some fantastic new schools right across the country to see first-hand the innovative and future focussed way staff and students are now operating.”

The funding for Halswell West Primary School is part of the $1.137 billion Christchurch School Rebuild programme, which is rebuilding or renewing 115 schools by 2022.

To date, 11 schools have been completed, 27 are under construction and 19 will start construction this year.

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