$75 mil for Western Springs College redevelopment

By Harata Brown

Western Springs College based in Auckland has received the biggest cash injection given by the government to a secondary school.  The school's principal believes this will allow them to shape their building facilities to their academic needs.

Paraone Tai Tin, (Head of Te Reo Māori Department, Ngā Puna o Waiorea Immersion Unit) says, “It will have many benefits.  The announcement will enable us to create better Māori spaces and facilities.”

$75mil will be used to redevelop Western Springs College's building facilities which stand on a former land fill area.  The Māori immersion unit, Ngā Puna o Waiōrea based at the Ngā Oho meeting house will also be revamped.   

Principal of Western Springs College, Kevin Havill says, “"It's a beautiful setting but as you can see we have a collection of relocatables serving as classrooms.  These students deserve better, these teachers deserve better."

What is unique about the school is that it operates in accordance with the Treaty of Waitangi.  In this case, Māori at Western Springs are bucking the trend of Māori achievement in mainstream schools.  The overall NCEA and UE academic success of the entire school was recorded last year at over 90%.

The redevelopment is set to be completed and ready to use by 2019.