Liberton Christian School principal Fiona Sizemore said the school board of trustees applied to the ministry for the increase last year, but was declined.
“One of the key reasons given by the ministry was we had not built a permanent fourth classroom, which we said we would build, should we get a roll increase.”
The lack of a waiting list of children waiting to enrol at the Pine Hill-based school was also a factor, she said.
She said the school was marginally over its roll cap of 75 at present. Previously, pupils had been turned away.
However, seven pupils were on a waiting list to enrol, and the number was continuing to grow.
The school’s proprietor, the Dunedin Christian Schools Association, decided to spend more than $250,000 on building a new classroom and a new library which greatly enhanced the school’s facilities.
Mrs Sizemore said the development had freed up the school’s hall, part of which had been used as a fourth classroom to fit the present roll.
“Having the hall back means we can have community functions and indoor sports in there again.
“We feel like we’ve doubled in size.”
The school was trying to meet the demand for Christian education in Dunedin, Mrs Sizemore said.
Having now met the key reasons why the rise was declined last year, she said the board of trustees would reapply for a bigger maximum roll later this month.
It was hoped the roll cap could be raised to 100 pupils, she said.
The new development was just the first stage in an ongoing development plan.
It was hoped new courts and a playground would be built in the next year, and a fifth classroom in the next five years, she said.
The school will officially open the new fourth classroom and library with a celebration assembly at the school tomorrow.
By John Lewis
Printed in the Otago Daily Times, August 1, 2013