Images, quake damaged, Hagley Park, netball courts:
Canterbury Education: After CERA minister Brownlee's & MOE minister Parata's announcements about closing 13 schools, merging 18 schools & relocating 7 schools, the protest drew about 4 000 parents, kids & educators to the netball courts.
As merging was closure of half the proposed merged schools, that meant 20+ school properties were National govt proposed asset sales. Kendal School & Burnside Primary School near my home were valuable Burnside assets. National govt would get millions of dollars from those asset sales. Never mind billions of dollars realized from other schools sales, post closures & mergers.
I often drove to South New Brighton where Luke's girlfriend lived near South New Brighton School. MOE proposed merging South New Brighton School with Central New Brighton school, which was on valuable New Brighton commercial land. Asset sale of CNB School would realize mega-bucks for the National govt. Never mind CNB School parents & kids being forced to commute to SNB School, causing traffic congestion on Southshore Spit.
Merging of the 2 schools was a mad idea by MOE. SNB School was on a dead-end road on Southshore Spit, bordered by Avon-Heathcote Estuary & the Pacific. If a tsunami hit, residents & school kids would be trapped, as the only exit from Southshore Spit was South Brighton Bridge, which was damaged in the 22.02.11 quake.
Some protestors sat on stands, speakers occupied another stand. Most of the crowd stood before them. All ages were at the protest, including disabled people in wheelchairs. Speakers included educators, a councillor & children. Three little, green uniformed girls from Yaldhurst School, sat at the top of the speakers' stand, signing for deaf people in the crowd.
Cantabrians had endured 11 000 quakes over the last 2 years, then had to endure MOE's inept announcements & dissembling about revamping Canterbury education. Pity MOE didn't revamp all NZ schools simultaneously. As MOE picked on quaked Canterbury, it was National govt's disaster capitalism again.
As the 2011 census was postponed due to Canterbury quakes, MOE was trying to revamp schools with 2006 census records. Although post quakes there'd been population shifts between suburbs & away from Christchurch, MOE based its school revamp proposals on ideology & cost cutting, rather than demography & clear population facts.
Example 1: Although E suburbs beyond Ferrymead Bridge had several primary schools, like at Redcliffs & Sumner, there was no high school in the area. Yet MOE fiddled with revamping schools in other E suburbs like Avondale & Aranui. In 1995 what put us off settling in Sumner was that there was no nearby high school. Our sons would've had to bus long distances to a high school. 17 years later high school status quo was the same.
Example 2: In our 17 years living in Christchurch no new high schools were built. Although there were vast developments, like Aidanfield in the Halswell district, where we lived for 8 years, no new high school was built there. Post quakes Halswell district continued to grow with housing developments by Halswell Junction Rd & Wigram Rd. Not a cheep about a new high school in the area from MOE, just a rebuild of quake damaged Halswell Primary.
A protest placard read, ONLY FOOLS CLOSE SCHOOLS! Like MOE wanted Canterbury Education "renewal" by destroying perfectly good schools & communities, CERA's CCDU Blueprint wanted a Green Space Frame in Christchurch, quake closed, CBD, by destroying perfectly good business properties.
Like SA apartheid discriminated on skin colour, post quake Canterbury land was zoned on colour - white, red, orange, green zones. Since the 04.09.10 quake, more than 2 years ago, bureaucrats dictated how & where Christchurch citizens should live & do business (like apartheid) & MOE added insult to injury with Canterbury schools "renewal".
MOE "renewal" minions separated & forced Canterbury school principals to wear coloured badges, red, yellow, green, based on whether their schools would be "rejuvenated, consolidated, restored."
NZ govt / CERA was obsessed with revamping Christchurch red zone CBD, but did little about sorting out EQC / insurer hassles regarding 28 000 green-blue zone, TC3 properties. MOE's school clusters for "rejuvenation, consolidation, restoration" aggravated Christchurch quake woes.
Speeches were made, protestors clapped, chanted, waved placards, banners & flags. Media sidled around making notes, videos, taking pics & interviewing.
Being deaf, I couldn't hear speeches, but placards, banners, pennants & flags gave the gist:
ADAMS BROWNLEE CARTER
N I'LL STOP BUGGERIZING
IF YOU STOP BUGGERIZING
DOING MORE DAMAGE
SINCE FEB 2010 [sic 2011]
WHAT THE HEKIA
SAVE OURUHIA SCHOOL...
DON'T CLOSE MY
SAVE OUR SCHOOL
WE'RE NOT ENDING
WITHOUT A FIGHT!
I LOVE MY TEACHER
I LOVE RICHMOND SCHOOL
PLEASE DON'T CLOSE
A FAIR GO
AWAY [heart pic]
WE [heart pic]
DEMOCRACY NOT AUTOCRACY
STOP THE HIJACK
SAVE OUR SCHOOLS
LET US HAVE
TANGATA AKONA KI TE KURA
(TONA KAINGA TAURUA)
TUNGA KI TE HAPORI, TAU ANA!
IF A PERSON IS EDUCATED AT HIS OWN SCHOOL
HE WILL STAND WITH CONFIDENCE
IN HIS OWN COMMUNITY
WE DREAM IT,
AND ACHIEVE IT...
THEN HEKIA TAKES
IT ALL AWAY
WE SAY NO!
LISTEN TO THE COMMUNITY
GREEN PARTY PRINCIPLES...
HOME RULE FOR
POST PRIMARY TEACHERS ASSOCIATION
LOCAL SCHOOLS ARE VITAL
AND OUR SCHOOLS
HURT MANNING, HURT OUR
SAVE OUR SCHOOL
DON'T GIVE UP
WHAT DO WE DO NOW MISS?
HOP ON A BUS AND GO TO A
SCHOOL. I DON'T KNOW
NO CHOICE FOR
WHAT ARE YOU GOING
TO DO WITH THE MONEY
YOU SAVE FROM SCHOOL
SAVE OUR SCHOOLS
SAVE OUR SCHOOLS
FOR A SIGN
[Pics of 3 N robots]
SAVE OUR SCHOOLS
KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF
IT'S MY SCHOOL!!
IT'S MY COMMUNITY!!
NO EQ DAMAGE
TO THE PEOPLE
TUI [mock ad]
BRANSTON INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL
Placard: PM John Key with devils horns pics.
DON'T DO THIS
22 FEB 2011
DOING MORE DAMAGE
SINCE FEBRUARY 2011
AND OUR SCHOOLS
WE HAD DEMOCRACY ONCE
4 LIFE [T shirt]
EDUCATION... IT'S ALL
ABOUT THE KIDS..YEAH RIGHT
LEAVE OUR KIDS
SAVE OUR SCHOOL [dog coat]
FIGHT FOR EVERY
RIGHT TO WALK
HELL NO HEKIA!!
LEAVE OUR SCHOOLS
YOU ARE NOT
THE KEY TO
WE WILL SOLDIER ON!
WANT NEVER GIVE UP!
TO [Cartoon of strangled bird] WHAT
MORE HEART [heart pic]
NO CHOICE FOR
SCHOOLS - EASTSIDE
P-S- OFF PARATA
IN THEIR SCHOOLS
NEED TO STAY /
GET YOURSELF SOME
COMPASSION & COURTESY...
A LIFE JACKET SHOULD
BE PART OF ANY
IT'S NOT ABOUT
LOCAL SCHOOLS ARE VITAL
INTERMEDIATE [3 pennants]
OUR SCHOOLS -
DON'T HIJACK FACILITIES. WE NEED
CONSULTATION AND COLLABORATION,
NOT DICTATORIAL DECISIONS
EDUCATION YEAH RIGHT
VALUED MOE [Mock Tui advert]
AGE 5 [person pic]
AGE 9 [heart pic]
DEMOCRACY [15 m banner for signing / commenting, also signed at recent democracy protest]
Apropos MOE's proposed closure of Kendal School & Burnside Primary, if Brownlee & Parata perused EQC's land report by "Tonkin & Taylor, Canterbury Earthquakes 2010 and 2011, as at 29 February 2012," they'd see T & T didn't look at individual Burnside properties, as there was so little land damage by quakes there. MOE's generalization that school closures in Burnside & elsewhere were due to quakes was risible.
Tonkin & Taylor's report website gave introductory discourse, but the full paper report, found in public libraries, had many aerial photographs, with detailed coloured legends covering lateral spreading, cracks, liquefaction, ponding, new springs, rock fall, etc, in Christchurch & outlying quake damaged districts.
Thurs 27.09.12. One News, PM Key, who grew up in Ilam, moved the gull posts, saying Burnside Primary had borer, therefore could be rebuilt ($9 million) or merged with Cobham Intermediate next door. Risible, as borer was cheaply killed by gassing.
Later on Burnside Primary was rebuilt. but nearby Kendal School was closed.
Sat 29.09.12, 3.44 am, 3.8 mag quake, 9 km depth, 10 km E of Christchurch (Geonet). Didn't feel it, asleep in bed.
As for Aranui schools merger proposed by MOE, a drive along Breezes Rd would show Aranui Primary (centenary 2012) Aranui HS, Chisnallwood Intermediate, Avondale Primary all close together. Merging the lot on Aranui HS campus was destruction rather than creation. Timing of the schools merger announcement was expedient, as the area was recovering from quakes, roads & housing in disarray. SCIRT hadn't even fixed Breezes Rd yet.
Granted Avonside / Avondale residential red zone was close by, but not even National govt could say how those red zone suburbs would develop post quakes, as their figures about school rolls, bldgs & facilities were inaccurate & MOE hadn't consulted schools before its school closures / mergers announcement.
Two years post 04.09.10 quake & 19 months post 22.02.11 quake, little recovery / rebuild was happening in Christchurch CBD & suburbs. Scattered rebuild I saw was done by private sector, not big talk, National govt / CERA / CCDU.
Post quakes National govt was a destroyer, disguised as public safety; demolitions; red zoning of perfectly good commercial & residential properties; 28 000 blue green TC3, uninsurable residential properties; CCDU buyouts of CBD properties for its Blueprint green Frame & Blueprint Convention Centre & Blueprint stadium; school mergers & closures, in Canterbury.
Tues 01.10.12. NZ Security & Intelligence Service spying fiasco regarding Kim Dotcom & Key's knowledge or lack thereof. It was a diversion for the Search & Surveillance law, operating from 1 October 2012, which gave cops powers of stopping, entry, search & surveillance without warrants.
Although warrants were needed in some instances, the lack of warrants for constables, or authorized persons in various places, like customs officers, conservation rangers, fisheries officers, etc, using "reasonable grounds" was the iniquity. Any young, NZ constable could therefore use "reasonable grounds" to stop traffic, search people & possessions, invade & search anyone's property...
Those unchecked powers of stopping, entry, search & surveillance were used by SA cops to harass SA citizens during apartheid. My younger brother-in-law was a SA conscripted cop, less hassles than conscripted soldiery. I accompanied him on night patrols in Pinetown & Claremont, Inanda & Chatsworth townships in the early 80s & saw what cops did with unchecked search & surveillance.
NZ cops would throw their weight around more after 1 October 2012, the day the police state was born in NZ.
Pity the Search & Surveillance law didn't exist during & immediately after Canterbury quakes & states of emergencies, as looting could've been stopped. At cop / NZDF checkpoints, I never saw, nor heard of, any searching of politicians, "contractors," USAR / TF, councillors, celebrities, or gawkers entering or leaving Christchurch red zone CBD.
Mon 08.10.12. Cranmer Court demolition saga, corner Kilmore St / Montreal St, opposite Cramer Sq. Heritage fanatics tried stopping Cranmer Court's demolition, which had started in June, but stopped when an Aussie buyer was interested, but the deal fell through, so heritage fanatics, including Lorraine North & the Wizard, protested again.
The protest went on till Thurs 11.10.12, when councillors, including Broughton, voted 5-4, a stay of demolition for 30 days, to look for another buyer, for part demolished Cranmer Court. CERA's CCDU boss Isaacs rejected that farcical delay by Councillors.
Problem with deluded heritage fanatics: They never offered to pay for bldgs they wanted to save, expecting others to pay for their delusions, neither did they have any reasonable plan for the saving of bldgs, just whining & hysterical ranting whenever bldgs were demolished. Never mind Cranmer Court apartment owners wanting to demolish & rebuild.
Contrary to heritage fanatics' whining, Cranmer Court was unsafe. In the 04.09.10 quake, stone turrets loosened, stone chimneys fell & stone, triangular gables snapped off like Toblerone chocolates. Thereafter the bldg was evacuated & fence cordoned, corner windows were nylon-strapped to stop collapse by aftershocks. Pigeons roosted in the ruins & flew in & out of gaping holes in walls.
In the 22.02.11 quake, Cranmer Court corner turret collapsed, windows smashed, roofs & walls collapsed. Thereafter damaged walls & windows were boarded & used as giant photo art boards. Cranmer Court was fence cordoned for months.
Yet heritage fanatics thought Cranmer Court was safe. They didn't explain why no one had lived there since the quakes?
Cranmer Court started off as a Normal School, then a teachers training college, then stood vacant for a decade, unused by the MOE, unsafe, then revamped as quake prone apartments.
Over the last couple of quake years, I snapped Cranmer Court many times, serially quake damaged & posted many pics.
Heritage fanatics tried to save quake damaged bldgs designated "heritage," while 1 000s of Christchurch citizens endured quake damaged, unrepaired houses, in TC3 houses awaiting geotech drilling reports, battling EQC & insurers for pay outs or repairs. Pity heritage fanatics showed no compassion nor anger at that post quake housing disaster, compounded by National govt & CERA inaction over slow EQC & insurers.
A drive beyond Christchurch on Canterbury Plains showed degraded natural heritage (polluted by cattle effluent allowed by ECAN) not an unseen city, not quake ruined cathedrals, not quake damaged Cranmer Court, not quake damaged bldgs, but lethal Port Hills during the 22.02.11 quake. Pity heritage fanatics didn't eradicate Port Hills gorse.
Wed 10.10.12. 11.51 am, 4.2 mag quake, 11 km depth, 15 km E of Christchurch. Rumbled by, shook our Burnside house. Felt like furniture moving / thumping underground. E, CBD, closer to the epicentre, Leah said shaking of her London St school was yuk. W, Hornby, Halswell Junction Rd, about 30 km from the epicentre, Luke said he didn't feel the quake.
Coda. Wed 22.05.13. MOE announced an interim decision about 5 Aranui schools: Chisnallwood Intermediate would stay as is until a 2020 review. Aranui, Avondale, Wainoni primary schools & Aranui HS would all close on 27 Jan 2017 & would merge into a super school Y1-13, to be built on the present Aranui HS site & opened Jan 2017.
MOE's self-serving bullshit published in Christchurch Mail, 23.05.13:
"We have looked at earthquake damage, population movement and future population growth, building issues, school locations and what opportunities exist to create more 21st century schools, with great new facilities...
We have a chance to build brighter, more modern schools in better locations, which will ensure all children have access to good, quality education within a close distance of where they live [An insult to current Aranui teachers]...
The creation of a single-site campus with provision for all ages will assist better transitions between schooling stages and share valuable resources and facilities for the surrounding communities..."
Pity CERA minister Brownlee & Ilam citizens weren't clamoring for a bright, super school to be built in Brownlee's Ilam constituency. Brownlee & Parata could combine Burnside HS, Burnside Primary, Kendal School, Cobham Intermediate into a super school Y1-13, to share valuable resources & facilities too.
Meanwhile, Fri 24.05.13, Phillipstown School protested that if their merger with Woolston School went ahead Phillipstown's low socio-economic children would have to walk a long distance to Woolston School across dangerous intersections like Aldwins Rd / Ferry Rd crossing. Leah remarked that the Phillipstown principal had aged visibly since school mergers were announced in 2012.
MOE had no mercy on Phillipstown School & despite protests, Phillipstown School was closed. After closure Phillipstown principal became a log trucker at Lyttelton in 2015.
Content & pics Copyright Mark JS Esslemont.
See NZ Ministry of Education, Canterbury Schools, Restore, Consolidate, Rejuvenate Proposals (Stuff Co).
See Razing of Cranmer Courts barbaric (The Press / Stuff Co).
See Police called to Cranmer Courts protest (The Press / Stuff Co).
See From classroom to lorry, principal reinvents himself (The Press /Stuff Co).
See Ministry of Education sorry for schools bungling (The Press / Stuff Co).