My source in the ministry has come up with some amazing (but not really given Hekia’s involvement) news.
I spoke to my source and said, ‘What on earth?’
‘Where does this come from?’
‘Why did she close the school down in the first place?’
She said, ‘Hekia loves closing down schools; it makes her feel powerful, after all she detests teachers, nasty, troublesome people, full of soppy idealism.’
‘Going deeper, closing them down, gives her a platform upon which she can play mother of the nation’s schools: closing them down but in a loving way – if the school only felt the love for children she felt, it would applaud. It is really a matter of love, understanding, and refinement beyond the beyond the ken of lumpish teachers.’
‘The school is being closed down, children’s lives disrupted, generations of connections severed, but really it is for the best.’
‘If you need reminding, you’ll see her in full performance over Redcliffs.’
‘I know what’s best because of my infinite depth of love.’
‘She acts all the more powerfully and convincingly in that there is not an iota of sincerity in her feelings.’
‘There is a way to sometimes give a school a miracle reprieve,’ she said.
‘That is by giving her more satisfaction in the noblesse oblige than in the guillotine de chop but it is very subtle path to navigate – you must keep things under the radar and bend yourself into fantastic contortions of subservience and flattery; one hint of independence and you’re goner.’
So you can see where Phillipstown went disastrously wrong. That wonderful but utterly non-tactical principal stole her role as the philosopher queen.
The school was doomed from that moment.
Instead of the East Coast princess playing the role of ethereal caring; there was this damned ancient mariner bearding the stage.
Now speaking of Phillipstown, I knew there was something I wanted to say.
Shall we start with Te Waka Unua, the new school opened at the start of the year on the Woolston school site to which Phillipstown School was forced to merge?
Even though Phillipstown had a growing roll, it was, as mentioned above, forced to merge. (For the reasons why, see above.) The Woolston site was crowded with prefabricated buildings at the start of 2015. Brilliant, well done Hekia.
But one year on, the 2016 starting roll will have about 120 children too many for the site. Hekia, you have outdone yourself.
This means that the senior school (year 7 and 8) will need to be housed elsewhere.
Now wait for it, are you ready? The ministry suggested they go back to Phillipstown which is sitting there empty.
The Te Waka Unua board was adamantly opposed to that – though personally, I think it would have been wonderful, allowing the children to escape that tawdry modern learning environment. But who am I to judge, doddery septuagenarian that I am?
That was a no goer, so the ministry had a new idea … Burwood School is empty (the merge into the Waitakiri site happening next week) why not pop over there?
The ministry suggested busing the Te Waka Unua children to Burwood a mere 7.5 kilometres away over damaged roads.
No way José!
But the Te Waka Unua BOT had another idea – a disused Korean church across the road.
Could be brilliant, a very cosy old learning environment.
But what a shambles!
Will Hekia throw another of her famous wobblies? Stand clear for action. Take an early Christmas break. Throw a sickie.
Get outa there!
I await a full report from my intrepid source
Meanwhile, happy days.