Building Redevelopment

November 2018 – From the Board 

Elmwood Normal School Redevelopment – Overview and Community Consultation

Elmwood Normal School is in the early planning stages of redevelopment under the Christchurch Schools Rebuild Programme.  The attached letter provides background information about the redevelopment process. Letter to community redevelopment Nov 2018

There will be several opportunities for the community to engage as the redevelopment progresses.  However, early engagement is the most important – your ideas are much easier to include early in the process, than to add later when plans are more developed.

To help us finalise decisions about our future direction at this initial stage of the process, we would like to gather feedback from you on the following;

  • Our school vision and values.
  • What attributes are important for an Elmwood graduate to have.
  • The future direction of teaching and learning at Elmwood.

So, please get involved by visiting our display over the next week – the Board needs your input!

Complete the online feedback form that will be sent out to you later this week.  

And visit the Board for more information:

  • Auditorium Foyer: Wednesday 21 November 3-5pm
  • Auditorium Foyer: Friday 23 November 10-11am
  • At the Family Fun Day: Sunday 25 November 10am-1pm

Every form goes into the draw for a $100 School Uniform Voucher courtesy of ENSCA.

Yours sincerely

Elmwood Normal School

Board of Trustees


August 2018 – From the Board Chair

The Board has decided that it is now time to commence the post-earthquake redevelopment of the school. This is a significant process which will impact the school for at least the next 3o years. While we have been living with some parts of the school that are less than ideal given their age and we would have liked to upgrade them sooner, we concluded that they remained workable in the short term and that some other schools needed their work sooner than Elmwood. Also, and importantly, potentially rushing the process might lead to less than desirable outcomes and from what we are hearing, the Ministry and its rebuild contractors have ‘learnt from their mistakes’, so coming in towards the end of the whole process is not a bad thing. Finally, to know where we were, the Board had to deal with the auditorium, which the Board 80% owns, which had considerable post-quake and leaky building issues.

In any event, the Board has entered the rebuild process, which is likely to take around 3 years. Initially, the school must prepare an ‘Educational Brief’ whereby we decide what and how learning works at Elmwood (essentially our learning philosophy).  Once the Brief is agreed with the Ministry of Education, they appoint a team to plan and design the school.

While we will endeavour to think about the rebuild as widely and openly as possible, there are limits as to what we can do and also what we need to do. Obviously the amount of funding is a primary issue, as is the size of our school both in terms of physical size and roll and zone size (the latter in particular impacts the amount of funding available).  Not all buildings need replacement (although we are keen to see the old junior block replaced) and some only need minor refurbishment. But how we go about this all comes back to the Educational Brief. I think it’s fair to say we want to see a modern and flexible environment, but one that reflects Elmwood’s history and core values.

During the Educational Brief process, which will take us into early 2019, it is the intention of the Board to engage with the Elmwood community to learn more fully what their desires are around learning. I encourage you to support this process, with an open mind, so that we get the very best we can for our current and future learners.

Malcolm Hollis – Board Chairperson