Catholic schools may merge or close
Two Christchurch Catholic primary schools earmarked to combine will either officially merge or both will close - letting all their staff go.
The Catholic Diocese announced in June that it planned to combine St Paul's School with Our Lady of Fatima school on the latter's Mairehau site.
St Paul's School in Dallington had been the only Christchurch school to be red-zoned after it was badly damaged in the earthquakes.
It initially moved to temporary classrooms at Catholic Cathedral College, before setting up its own special temporary site in Champion St in Edgeware, where it would remain until the new combined school opened in 2016.
Today, the schools announced they had been granted permission from Education Minister Hekia Parata to undertake a third and final round of consultation on the proposal to combine the two schools.
The third consultation involved considering two options on the proposed combination of the schools.
Option A involved cancelling the integration agreements for both current schools, and establishing a new state integrated school on the agreed site. All positions at both schools would be terminated and positions at the new school would be nationally advertised.
Option B also involved cancelling the current integration agreement, and closing St Paul's to increase the maximum roll of Our Lady of Fatima, and officially merge the two schools.
The school would be renamed, and staff at both schools would have the option of an equivalent position at the new school, but the principal's position would be nationally advertised. This option would only occur with the unanimous agreement of both boards and all staff at the schools.
St Paul's principal Christine Callaghan said the consultation process had been extremely long, and they were looking forward to a final decision.
"This final round narrows it down to everyone agreeing to a merger, or closing both and starting afresh," she said.
The final round of consultation will be considered by the two boards and the staff of the two schools.
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