The Minister sent termination letters to the schools last week, giving them six months’ notice that their contracts will end at the end of the year.

The schools are still waiting to hear if their applications to become integrated or designated character schools have been approved.

Opposition spokesperson for education, Nikki Kaye, described the process as “shambolic”.

“A number of schools have now received a ministerial termination letter while they are still in the dark about whether or not they will be able to reopen as a different school – with final decision from the Minister not due till the end of July,” she said.

“This is the latest development in a shambolic process which has also included the Minister meeting with one school but refusing to meet with others and prematurely announcing that schools will not open before decisions have been formally made. 

“He has even tried to celebrate that all the partnership schools applied to become either designated character schools or state integrated schools,” she added.

“The reality is they had no choice, given the legislation in Parliament to axe the partnership school model.”

Alwyn Poole, academic advisor to South Auckland Middle School and Middle School West Auckland, said the termination notice was “having a massive impact with stress and uncertainty” in the school community.

“It is also having a functional impact, in that we cannot enrol students for 2019 at present,” he said.

The development is the latest in the ongoing charter school closure saga.

In May, the Auditor-General declined a request by Kaye to investigate the Government’s management of the charter school transition process.

Meanwhile, in the same month, Poole said he had offered to host the Auckland meetings of the Education and Workforce Committee, which is considering the Education Amendment Bill covering the closure of charter schools, at South Auckland Middle School in order to assist families in the area to make submissions in a more affordable and less intimidating environment.

His offer was rejected by the Committee.