Otepopo School to stay open for another term

Otepopo School will remain open, at least for next term.

Commissioner Mike Allison wrote to parents yesterday indicating the school would remain open at the start of the second term.

The school is still waiting for a decision from Education Minister Anne Tolley on whether it should close or remain open.

Mrs Tolley has already said that she was satisfied the primary school should close, and Mr Allison had until February 15 to advise her if he had any arguments in favour of the Herbert school staying open.

Mr Allison said he had made a submission, in consultation with parents, indicating the starting roll this year was 20, compared with a roll on July 1 last year of just nine.

That was a reason in favour of the school remaining open.

No answer had been received from Mrs Tolley to the submission, he said yesterday.

Most of the problems that had troubled the school in the past had been solved or had disappeared, Mr Allison said.

If the school was to close, there was a procedure to follow and that could take some time, he said.

A spokesperson for Mrs Tolley yesterday said that no decision had yet been made about the school.

The roll was still 20 pupils, principal Ray Anderson confirmed.

Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean, who was strongly in support of the school being kept open, said she had not heard from Mrs Tolley about the school's future.


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