Te Huruhi Primary School Board of Trustees chairperson Emma Bolser says work to develop a safer environment around the new school is ongoing. Photos Merrie Hewetson

Teething troubles are following in the wake of Te Huruhi’s $23m school rebuild, with a hazardous new parking and drop-off area worrying some parents, teachers and board members. Chairperson of the school’s board of trustees Emma Bolser says this is just one of a host of concerns around traffic and road safety in the area, where the high school, a childcare centre and a kindergarten are also located.

In a Ministry of Education survey, board of trustee members noted that the school’s safety layout was lost following the rebuild and said a new plan was needed. They also pointed out that the only street crossing for students is now in the wrong place, that the car-park was being misused as a drop-off area, and further, that the new school has been fenced, limiting entry points and concentrating parents and children in small areas.

During peak morning and afternoon hours, hundreds of students traverse Donald Bruce Road as they make their way to and from school, some on bikes, and others hurrying for the bus or their parents’ cars. Heavy traffic heading to and from the Kennedy Point ferry terminal is also part of the mix. Then when Te Huruhi Primary’s new building opened, confusion around the parking zone at the front of the school quickly escalated, adding to the already unsafe environment. Parents were making right turns across the busy road  into the carpark resulting in what many called an accident waiting to happen. The carpark was eventually cordoned off with cones, and now staff members spend their mornings and afternoons monitoring the space and removing the cones to allow teachers, or parents with special-needs children to enter. • Sophie Boladeras

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