November 24, 2016
No boarders for Hato Petera
Maori Party co-leader Marama Fox is questioning whether the Auckland Catholic diocese has done enough to give Hato Petera a chance of survival.
The Northcote-based Maori boarding school will take students in 2017, but the Education Ministry has refused to give its hostels a licence.
That's despite a big volunteer effort last summer to bring them up to standard.
Ms Fox says it comes down to the ability of Maori parents to pay the fees needed to keep private boarding schools open.
"This is not a decile 10 school that can charge $10,000 a year so there are a number of church boarding schools that continue doing well that have large numbers of students and phenomenal facilities because they have a different clientele that can afford to pay those fees," she says.
Auckland Bishop Patrick Dunn would prefer the school to close, but says he will accept the ministry's decision.
He says the problems identified in a consultation report earlier this year haven't gone away: the low roll, the limited breadth of the curriculum being offered; the college's financial position; and a breakdown of relationships between the school board and the hostel board.
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