Parents in Whangarei have just been advised that the GKP programme here is being forced to close at the end of the year. This is a direct result of the government cutting funding for gifted education. Our One Day School is no longer able to operate on the limited funding that is available.
This, of course, is devastating for the parents and children involved. Is this happening in other regions also? What are we as parents doing about it?
I have written to our local MP expressing concern. This is a heart felt plea to all parents who have children currently attending GKP. Please, please, please lobby your local MPs about the lack of funding. If your local GKP is still in existence, you may be unlucky enough to lose it, just as we are due to lose ours. Don't let that happen.
I assume you mean closing of Gifted Kids Programme (GKP) classes not One Day Schools as they are different places. Our GKP is still operating in Wellington in 2012 and I haven't heard of any of the other local ones closing though I take your point, it's much harder for the organisation to operate without government support especially when funding is so hard to come by at the moment. Seems like there is such an emphasis on the tail and no value at all placed on the head. GKP has been a godsend for my child, I have no idea where we'd be without it. Certainly I can write in support to our local MP. All the best.
GKP Rotorua definitely open in 2012.... lucky us but I'm pretty sure we lost a day here when the money dropped..... i know that cos my child was on a wait list for a while, totally loves GKP though, gets loads out of it. Regular school is great too but he just needs a bit more sometimes. Thanks for letting us know your situation Dinglemouse, sorry to hear about what's happening up your way.
Thanks Dinglemouse for your input. Parent support and understanding of what we offer is vital to our existence and our organisation greatly appreciates your support. Just to clarify a couple of points please. The impact of the recession along with the lack of government funding has resulted in the Gifted Kids Programme looking closely at the viability of all GKP classes and Units in all regions. It is with much regret that we are closing our Whangarei Unit at the end of 2011 however we will be offering range of alternative services to the current contributing schools as a means of supporting students and their teachers. We have been operating in Whangarei for ten years and have had some incredible students, educators, schools and families join us in this journey. The shape of our provisions in other regions will remain with the status quo moving into 2012, but is open to review as and when necessary. Deb Clark (CEO, Gifted Kids Programme)
It is a terrible shame to lose our GKP programme in Whangarei.My 8 y/o son only started there this year , and it has been a shame to hear of it closing down completely in 2012.Where to next for these kids???Is there any possibility of saving this class from extinction???Any suggestions will be gladly received.How was it that Whangarei was chosen as a location for the closure of the GKP classes?We are isolated up here , and having a central based class for our gifted students has been a blessing.At a recent symposium for Gifted Children/education held here at Whangarei, it was noted that support for these kids in "regular"school is difficult,as it relies on so many variables (teacher's acceptance, knowledge and experience of GKs,teacher and school resources,available space and time etc etc...).One huge benefit of the GKP class is that the children get to spend time with like-minded children.What a shame we have lost that.Unbelievable.
Where to indeed! I urge all affected parents to lobby Phil Heatley. He has responded to my letter and said that he is looking into it. The more parents (and therefore potential voters) who contact him the better.
There is also a meeting at GKP at 5pm on the 26th of October (I think that I have the date right). Parents need to turn up and discuss their concerns.
I agree with you that it is unbelievable. I am gutted.