WELLINGTON, Feb 20 - Ministry of Education officials are negotiating with each of the 11 schools, and decisions will be made about closing them or allowing them to continue under different arrangements.

They could become integrated schools or schools of special character, but they would have to hire registered teachers.

Education Minister Chris Hipkins has said he would prefer their contracts to end.

National's education spokeswoman, Nikki Kaye, says there are serious grounds for an investigation.

"I believe the minister's and the ministry's process is fundamentally flawed and there is a public interest in investigating it," she said on Tuesday.

"The minister has made several unfortunate comments that indicate he has a closed mind and there is potential evidence that the schools have undue pressure being put on them.'