Private-public schools on the way

ANNA PEARSON
Last updated 17:29 04/03/2014
Hekia Parata
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EDUCATION MINISTER: Hekia Parata

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Four further New Zealand schools are to be built using a public-private partnership (PPP) model, the Government has announced.

Expressions of interest will be sought for the design, construction, financing and maintenance of Aranui Community School and Rolleston Secondary School in greater Christchurch.

Wakatipu Secondary School's new site in Queenstown and a new school in Auckland are also being tendered.

In her announcement today, Education Minister Hekia Parata said the construction and maintenance cost for the project was estimated at more than $200 million.

''The use of a PPP for this bundle of four schools could deliver savings of two to eight per cent over traditional procurement by the ministry,'' she said.

Professional facilities managers would take care of school property, which would result in the ''freeing up'' of staff time for teaching and learning, Parata said.

Education matters within the schools would remain the responsibly of the schools' principals and the boards of trustees.

Associate Education Minister Nikki Kaye said the schools would be built the "traditional" way if the expressions of interest did not result in the best value for money.

The ministry is also investigating the possibility of locating other community and social services on the Aranui Community School site.

Last year, the organisation behind the country's first public-private partnership school, Hobsonville Point School in Auckland, said it was ''keen as mustard'' to give Aranui its new school.

The principal investor behind the school, Learning Infrastructure Partners (LIP), told  The Press  it was happy with its investment and would be keen to widen its net.

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