Funding towards scholarships for gifted students from low socio-economic rural communities.
Te Horo School, Northland
Te Horo School, in Northland, is a rural school with 53 students. The school serves
the community of Pipiwai, a primarily Maori population, thirty-five kilometres from
Whangarei. The area has a strong affiliation with the Ngatihine Iwi, and the local
Marae 'Tau Henare Marae' stands across the road from the school. The Marae runs a
kohanga reo for 13 students.
Pipiwai Village itself has a marae, church, school, kohanga and rugby club with fields
and clubrooms, fifteen Housing Corporation homes and three Papakaianga homes. Outside
the village there are eighteen homes in a 10km radius that send their children to
the school. The area provides very few opportunities for work so most adults receive
government benefits. Those parents or grandparents that are working have to travel
to Dargaville (over an hour drive away) or Whangarei to work.
Money for extras outside the school's bulk grant has to come from fundraising. Though
still a decile one rating, the school now basks in glory from the results of two
years of successful education. As part of the school's commitment to providing the
best possible learning experience for its students, staff realised that they must
address barriers related to isolation, rural living and lower socio-economic status.
The reality is that most children at the school lack the experience of urban children
and need to be exposed to education outside the classroom. Every two years the school
has committed to sending their students further afield.
Fundraising is essential as the school strives to ensure that no child misses out
on opportunities because their parents cannot afford it.
Planning a trip to Wellington began last year. This trip will enable all the children
at Te Horo school to see first hand Government buildings, Te Papa, Capital E Production,
the Carter Observatory and take a trip to the South Island. An application to the
Rural Communities Trust to support the hard work and planning Te Horo School had
put in to ensuring its students had the opportunity to broaden their horizons, was
made and granted.
"We just had to contribute to the school's field trip. The Rural Communities Trust
exists so that it can help rural communities overcome barriers like isolation that
present in a variety of ways. The hard work and planning Te Horo School has put in
to this project was worthy of our support", says Chrissy.