New beginnings at Kaiapoi Nth

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Work is about to begin on Kaiapoi North School’s redevelopment.
Waimakariri MP Matt Doocey turned over the first sod on Friday, with work due to begin on the school’s $5.54 million redevelopment this month.
Mr Doocey was filling in for Education Minister Hekia Parata, whose flight from Nelson was delayed due to rain.
‘‘This is an exciting phase of the project for the Kaiapoi North School community as it looks forward to some great learning spaces.’’
The redevelopment includes two new teaching blocks each consisting of six flexible learning spaces and the refurbishment of four teaching blocks, the library and gymnasium.
It is due to be completed in July 2017 and will provide the school with 24 teaching spaces in all, 12 of them new.
Mr Doocey read Ms Parata’s speech on her behalf, in which she acknowledged communities ‘‘still need support as a result of the earthquakes’’.
‘‘Today highlights the ongoing recovery progress.
‘‘Our young people need to have high quality buildings and facilities so student achievement can be lifted even further.’’
Principal Jason Miles says the last six years have been a significant period for the school community and the redevelopment marks an important step forward.
‘‘Through the earthquakes we have supported and looked after each other.
‘‘We have thought about collaborative teaching styles and opening up our classrooms.
‘‘Now we can look forward to providing these opportunities with new and refurbished buildings.
‘‘It’s a very exciting time for our school.’’
Mr Miles says he has enjoyed working with Australian architectural firm Baldasso Cortese and Noordanus, which has also worked on the redesign of Kaiapoi High School and Kaiapoi Borough School.
He also offered a special thanks to Ministry of Education Canterbury Director of
education Coralanne Child ‘‘for ensuring schools had resources to keep going following the earthquakes’’.
Friday’s sod-turning followed last week’s announcement that an extra $6.6 million would be invested in Kaiapoi High School’s redevelopment. Work is expected to begin at Kaiapoi High School and Kaiapoi Borough School soon.