Taieri College principal David Hunter is excited about the
project to replace the 76-year-old classroom block. Photo
by Peter McIntosh.
A multimillion-dollar investment has given Taieri
College's principal David Hunter a positive start to his new
The Ministry of Education has signed off on a $2.11 million
contribution to a state-of-the-art facility, to replace the
school's main administration and classroom block, built in
''It's a positive investment in the Taieri district,'' Mr
Hunter said, having taken over only a fortnight ago.
The $3 million-plus project was first mooted a few years ago,
he said, and its approval was cause for celebration among
staff, pupils and the wider community.
''It comes at a great time for us, because we are about to
hook into ultra-fast broadband. Things are shaping up really
positively for us. It's an exciting time for kids on the
The 76-year-old block comprises the school's reception area,
staff room, administration offices, and library and
information centre, as well as eight classrooms, including
A new 1600sq m block will replicate all the existing
facilities, but within a more modern and space-efficient
''This is brand new; it's not a refurbishment and it's not
throwing new money at old buildings. It's a blank canvas and
that means it will be at the cutting edge of technology,'' Mr
The school, which has a steady roll of about 940 pupils, will
spend about $930,000 of its five-year capital works budget on
the project. Mr Hunter was optimistic about the college's
''Taieri is a growth area and our enrolments are looking very
healthy. The ministry has accepted that and invested in our
school, and not before time.''
As a former Taieri College pupil, Mr Hunter had sat through
many lessons in the A block, but said he was ''not sad to see
''It's old and expensive to maintain, so the decision to
replace it rather than refurbish it is really important.''
The school will advertise for a project manager in the next
few weeks, then seek interest from architects and acquire
It was too early to know when demolition would start. It
could be done in stages, with temporary classrooms being used
until the new building was ready.