Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Ōmokoroa schools plan progresses

Planning for two new schools on the Bay of Plenty’s Ōmokoroa Peninsula is underway as part of the Government’s plan to support growth in the fast-growing local catchment.

Ongoing housing development will see 1,200 new homes in Ōmokoroa by 2025, and another development area in the west of the Ōmokoroa Peninsula is expected to deliver approximately 3,200 additional new dwellings.

“Local schools in established areas have been under increasing pressure as the demographics of these neighbourhoods change to include more families with school-age children,” Associate Education Minister, Jan Tinetti said today.

The new primary and secondary schools first announced in 2019 will provide capacity for up to 1,950 students across both schools. The new secondary school will be the first secondary school in the Ōmokoroa catchment area, addressing community concerns over the current travel times faced by senior students.

“The Government not only recognises the significant growth in our region, but is also driving solutions to achieve the best learning outcomes for our children and young people,” said Ms Tinetti.

“We are currently working with Pirirākau hapū and the Western Bay of Plenty District Council to plan for these schools. The relationships forged with the hapū will help to keep the educational goals of Pirirākau at the forefront of the school development, and I am excited to be attending a community engagement exercise designed to ensure the voices, aspirations, and cultural values of the Ōmokoroa community are considered in the development of the new schools.”

The Ministry of Education has appointed Warren and Mahoney Architects to prepare the masterplans for the new schools, and says they will facilitate the community engagement session.

“Its purpose is to help ensure the curriculum and learning environments have meaning for students, connect with their wider lives, and engage the support of their families, whānau and communities,” Minister Tinetti said. 

All members of the Ōmokoroa community are invited to the community engagement drop-in session – Minister Tinetti will be in attendance – on Saturday, 7 May, between 10.30am and 1.30pm at the Ōmokoroa Library, 28 Western Avenue, ground floor meeting space. 

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