You may not be aware that our school is the evacuation point of the Ministry of Education Response team during events that effect Wellington.
It was lovely to receive a thank you from them in their latest media release:
By far the majority of schools will open tomorrow
Schools have done a great job responding to the challenges brought about by this morning’s earthquake, Acting Secretary for Education Katrina Casey said today.
“The majority of principals were in early checking their schools and contacting their parent communities. These earthquakes have been a really big event for many across large parts of the country, particularly those in North Canterbury, Marlborough and Nelson and Wellington,” Ms Casey said.
“Schools offered support to others in their communities including the use of facilities, particularly as examination centres. For example, Marsden Collegiate in Karori, offered schools to use some of its examination rooms.” In all, 276 of the 524 school in the affected areas of Canterbury, Nelson/Marlborough and Wellington were closed today.
“We advised schools to close this morning so that buildings could be inspected. Thankfully, most of the damage has been minimal which means most will be open tomorrow. “We have asked structural engineers to assess schools with more obvious damage, to ensure they are safe “Secondary schools have been our top priority because their students are sitting NCEA exams. We’ve not been advised of any significant structural damage in Wellington, Canterbury or Nelson, so most schools that were closed in these areas today are expected to be open tomorrow, subject to final checks.
“That includes most secondary schools and area schools. As far as exams themselves are concerned NZQA informs us that where schools are open, exams will be going ahead. “Where schools are closed, or if students sit an exam and believe their performance has been affected by the earthquakes, students can apply for a derived grade. “Looking ahead, we do need to do some final engineering checks at a small number of secondary schools but we expect the majority will be open.
“There is one area where we haven’t been able to get a good picture and that’s Kaikoura because roads in and out of the town are blocked. There are 6 schools in this area and Police advised they were all closed today. We expect to know more about the status of those schools soon. “We would encourage parents who are unsure about the status of their school to contact the school and check their Facebook page. “Scientists tell us there will be more aftershocks. So if any school or ECE service becomes concerned about further damage as a result of afterschocks, they can get in touch with us.”
Ms Casey added, “Finally, I would like to thank the principal of Cardinal McKeefry School for generously hosting the Ministry of Education’s emergency response team throughout the morning, also Samuel Marsden Collegiate for hosting Wellington Regional Office staff.”