Kia ora Whānau,
This week Yendarra School turns 50. Happy Birthday Yendarra!
What a privilege it is to be part of the Yendarra whānau during this golden celebration. We are hoping that this will be a memorable week for our children with a few ‘special touches’ made to our normal programme. This week is an opportunity for us to reflect and give thanks to the many good people who have contributed positively to our school.
Schools today are such different places to what they were 50 years ago and this week is about celebrating our people- both past and present tamariki, staff and whānau. So many wonderful people who have contributed to the success of our school over the past 50 years. We hope that this week will bring past whānau back and they can see both Yendarra’s traditions that they developed, as well as positive changes in their old school.
Some things we hope will remain long after our tenure as Kaitiaki (guardian) expires. He Taonga Aroha - A gift of love, the space where we gather for assemblies, haka powhiri and other special occasions has remained the same since it was gifted many years ago. Some very special local people contributed to creating all the special taonga in this space.
Our treasured Kuia, Mrs Frances Baker started working at Yendarra way back in 1983 and is a great link with Yendarra’s past. When asked what it is that keeps her here for so long she says, “the people, especially the children.” Mrs Baker is very talented and was a key person in making our beautiful kapa haka uniforms. ‘Te puna o Wairoa- Spring of life’ was the name given to the original Yendarra kapa haka group and our tamariki today continue to wear the same kapa haka uniform with pride.
During Mrs Baker’s time at Yendarra she has seen many changes and seen so many people come and go. During this week we salute Mrs Baker’s piripono to Yendarra School and thank her for the dedicated service she has given for over 25 years.
Another face that will be familiar to many is that of our beloved caretaker Mr Karl Anguna affectionately known as Papa Karl. This is Papa Karl’s 18th year at Yendarra and his loyalty and service is extraordinary. Papa takes great pride in our school and inspires us with his kind words and actions. He is loved by all and inspires us to be our BEST in his selfless acts of kindness and dedicated service to our school. Meitaki ma’ata Papa Karl for everything you continue to do for our school.
Having taught many years previously at both Flatbush and Rongomai, I always wanted to return to Otara and in 2005 Yendarra School was advertised. I didn’t know where in Otara Yendarra actually was, but knew it was the community that I wanted to part of.The changes that I have seen during this relatively short hikoi have been huge and I can only imagine what the school was like 50 years ago and what it will achieve in the next 50 years.
Property changes that former students and whānau will see:
Other significant changes include:
We are thankful to the many people who over the past 50 years have contributed to the success of Yendarra School. Tamariki and staff in 2018 are very fortunate to have the resources and opportunities that were not available to other generations. With the wonderful people who make up Yendarra School’s whānau, our school will continue to scale new heights over the next 50 years.
During this joyous week we look back and look ahead, with a grateful heart.
Nga mihi nui