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School becoming 'revolving door' due to lack of affordable housing

Published: 5:29AM Wednesday May 28, 2014 Source: ONE News

"A revolving door" that's how one principal is describing his school in a report released this morning on the number of students forced to move due to their parents' financial issues.

The report from the Child Poverty Action Group reveals some decile one primary schools in Auckland are experiencing turnover of up to 30% of their pupils.

Dr Vicki Carpenter of Auckland University's Faculty of Education says a typical 'transient' child will move schools at least twice a year, but she's seen cases where students have moved up to 12 times.

"The report points to housing, economics and job stability as the main issues that are causing this."

She says changing schools so often is hard for the child socially and academically and also puts a huge amount of stress on the schools.

"It's a government issue in that schools need support with this," she told TV ONE's Breakfast.

The Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) says children from low-income households are forced to move around more because their parents rent accommodation.

it comes down to housing.

"Transience can no more be dealt with by the education sector than rheumatic fever can be dealt with by throat swabs. Both issues have at their heart a lack of affordable housing," CPAG chief researcher Donna Wynd says.

Ms Wynd says previous reports show transient students fall behind their peers and are not gifted with the same opportunities as a result.

Fifty-two low decile Auckland primary schools in south and west Auckland were surveyed, and the full report will be released this morning.