Growing suburb puts pressure on school
The ever-expanding suburb of Aotea is bringing more families to the area, and Papakowhai School is feeling the pressure.
The school term started last week and the school’s principal Kevin Win says its roll is higher than ever, expected to top 323 students by the end of this year.
In 2009 the student roll was 303. This increased by almost a classroom’s worth of kids in 2010, and would likely do the same this year, said Mr Win.
‘‘It’s difficult to tell how much we will grow by, but as the year goes on we will get more newentrant enrolments that will contribute to our rising numbers.’’
The school’s board of trustees introduced a zone in 2007, encompassing all of Papakowhai up to the first eight sections of Aotea, to cap the number of pupils eligible for enrolment.
A parent, who had recently moved to Papakowhai, contacted Kapi-Mana News worried she would have to find another school for her children to attend because she believed enrolments were ‘‘at capacity’’.
Mr Win said the school would not turn any children away from within its school zone and would only accept out-of-zone children in special circumstances.
‘‘ We have had a few cases where older siblings lived out-ofzone and were enrolled before 2007, then their younger siblings have grown up and were accepted into the school even though they still live out-ofzone. In those cases we don’t want to separate siblings so they have to attend different schools.’’
The closest primary schools to Aotea are Rangikura School in Ascot Park, Te Kura Maori o Porirua and Tairangi School, both in Waitangirua. None of them have zoning schemes.
Mr Win would not discuss whether he believed a new school was needed to cater for the Aotea development.
Dog owner: Lara Radford with faithful Kruiz. She says she and her family would be heartbroken if any of their pets were killed on the road, collected by the local council and then disposed of without any
attempt to contact them.