Public private partnerships to build schools

A public private partnership (PPP) is an agreement between the Ministry of Education and a consortium of private companies to design, finance, build and maintain a new school. Two schools have opened and 4 are being developed under PPP contracts.

Understanding public private partnerships

A public private partnership (PPP) is an agreement between the Ministry of Education and a consortium of private companies to build a new school or rebuild an existing school. The agreement is a single, long-term contract, usually for 25 years. The agreement includes the ongoing maintenance of the property.

Under a PPP, the Ministry engages the private partner to design, finance, build and maintain a particular school. We pay the private partner quarterly once the new buildings are open. We reduce the payment if the school facilities do not meet the standards in the contract. This effectively provides a 25-year guarantee on that school’s buildings and service delivery.

The Government still owns the land and buildings. The principal and board of trustees are responsible for all education matters. Because it does not deal with property and maintenance issues, the board of trustees in a PPP school has more time to focus on education.

Hobsonville Point schools

The Hobsonville Point schools’ contract covered the first 2 schools built under PPPs. These 2 schools are in Auckland.

  • Hobsonville Point Primary School opened in term one, 2013.
  • Hobsonville Point Secondary School opened in term one, 2014.

The PPP delivered the schools on time and achieved high-quality innovative modern learning environments. The principal of Hobsonville Point Primary School has reported his time spent on property issues has reduced significantly.

Current projects under public private partnership contract

Four new schools in Auckland, Christchurch and Queenstown will be designed, financed, built and maintained under a PPP contract. Construction should start mid-2015, as the following indicative timeline indicates.

April 2015

Contract signing

May 2015 to December 2017

Indicative design and construction phase

Term one, 2017

Aranui Community School, Rolleston Secondary School and Ormiston Junior College open

Term one, 2018

Wakatipu High School opens

If you have any questions or comments, please contact the project team at PPPSchools.Project2@education.govt.nz.

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