Growing roles pressure schools
One Upper Harbour school is over capacity and four others are at risk from overcrowding, according to a recently released report.
A Ministry of Education report showed 40 schools in the Auckland region are currently over capacity, and 130 schools are over 85 per cent capacity, most with continuing role growth.
RidgeView School in Paremoremo was listed as projected to be over capacity as of October 2016 with 106.7 per cent. At risk of reaching capacity in the Upper Harbour region were Oteha Valley School, Massey’s Royal Road School and Don Buck Road Primary School, and Upper Harbour Primary School.
The Ministry of Education defines capacity as being 100 per cent use of a school’s buildings. Any school operating above 85 per cent capacity was at risk of becoming overcrowded.
Don Buck Road Primary School principal Jennice Murray said development and more people buying houses in the area had meant less transiency and an increased roll count.
‘‘We have to think really hard now about how this will look, when it will take place, what it means to us locally,’’ she said.
Murray said the board of trustees had been active in making sure children had proper classroom space. Two temporary classrooms had been installed in March and April.
Royal Road School principal Wayne Leighton said the school was working with the ministry on plans for growth.
‘‘We don’t feel like we’re under stress at the moment but we just feel good we’re making plans into the future for the predicted rollgrowth in the Massey area.’’
Upper Harbour Primary School principal Sue Smith said the school was experiencing ‘‘significant role growth’’. She said the school had been advised three temporary classrooms would be installed this summer for 2018.
The 2016/17 ministry report, Auckland Region Schooling Network Annual Plan (N1), stated while regional pressures were highlighted, some schools showing as over capacity may already be managing growth.
Extremely high growth is expected in greenfield areas where development is planned, including in Silverdale, Kumeu, Whenuapai and Hobsonville. The report sourced data from school roll returns, Statistics New Zealand, Auckland Council and other agencies.
Don Buck Primary School got two new temporary classrooms this year.