Hato Petera hostel closure sends parents into disarray

By Wepiha Te Kanawa

Some parents have expressed concern about the way they were informed about the decision made to close the Hato Petera's hostels.

Te Whānau o Hato Petera Trust chairman has said, “It is untenable to continue to provide the supportive environment that is required.”  

Five days out from the last term of school, Denise Proctor, a caregiver of three students from Hato Petera, received a brief explanation.

Proctor says, “What actually made them close the boarding house?  You can’t just say you're closing it, we need reasons why, something with a bit of essence, something with a bit of truth and guts to it, not just of we are closing the boarding house. It just sent our whole whānau into disarray.”

Proctor’s main concern was the way she was informed.  She says, “Instead of ringing us, they need to have a kanohi ki te kanohi, face us call a hui, a whānau hui instead of the telephone, thats Pākehā.”

The senior school hostel will remain open so students can complete their NCEA, but the junior school has been billeted by staff.  Denise hopes it won't affect their schooling.

“My mokopuna are learning, they are achieving and they're happy, that makes me happy, that makes the whānau happy, the tamariki are happy and achieving that makes the whānau happy not just me,” said Proctor.

The chairman of the Board of Trustees, Mate Webb, says an AGM has been arranged but a date is yet to be set.  Denise says the future of her mokopuna will be decided then.