Associate Minister of Education, Tim Macindoe, will visit Rangiora Borough School today to officially open a new $6 million building that the school has named after local pioneer, Henry Blackett.

“The Henry Blackett building replaces aging facilities and extends capacity to meet roll growth by providing the school with 12 new, modern teaching spaces that will promote positive and inspiring learning experiences for its students,” says Mr Macindoe.

“School upgrades are part of the government’s plan to raise student achievement by ensuring they can learn and achieve in the best possible environments.”

Rangiora Borough School was already experiencing growth prior to the Christchurch earthquakes. The subsequent population movements impacted several schools in the area.

“We considered the net effect of population movements on centres like Rangiora following the events in Christchurch, particularly where we have historic schools that are more than 100 years old.

“We have committed more than $20 million to redevelop four North Canterbury schools: Rangiora Borough, Oxford Area, Ashgrove and Southbrook. They were not part of the Christchurch Schools Rebuild programme yet they were still affected by changing population patterns. Each of these schools is receiving new classrooms to replace aging buildings and extend capacity.”

The Ministry of Education is delivering all of these projects for the four schools through one contract.

“Addressing the property needs of several schools located in the same geographic area at the same time can achieve efficiencies and increase value for money, which is a good result for the schools and the government.

“We will continue to look for opportunities to maximise the benefits from our infrastructure investment to support our ongoing delivery of high quality, modern and flexible school environments that provide the level of infrastructure needed to serve communities long-term.”

The $20 million investment in the four North Canterbury schools is in addition to the $14.9 million committed to redevelop Rangiora High School, and the $1.4 billion Christchurch Schools Rebuild programme, which is repairing, renewing and rebuilding 115 schools across greater Christchurch. A new school, Rangiora West, is scheduled to open in 2021.

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