In a day of high sunshine before the deluge, the #Betterfunding van headed into South Auckland.
The morning began early at Willowbank School in Botany where Principal Diedre Alderson and Worksite Rep Jordan Priestley hailed down parents and explained to them the issues around the funding freeze. In a short time over 100 signatures were committed to the petition and to postcards for the Minister.
Then it was off to Ferguson Intermediate where WSR Lesa Arthur and her colleagues had already added 120 signatures to the petition. Classes were in session but Principal Sisi Key called out all support staff to pose for a photo and a chance to talk about the campaign. It was great to here the enthusiasm of these hard working professionals.
A flying visit to Sir Edmund Hillary campus yielded more completed petition forms and then it was off to Otara Town Centre where retired Principal Lois Kirkbride joined us to talk with locals. It was brilliant to have Lois involved, having conversations with old pupils and parents alike. Some of the old pupils were MIT students on their break who readily understood the need for adequate funding of schools and centres. Many parents and grandparents talked about the rising costs of schooling and ECE and how this impacted whanau.
The afternoon ended with a visit to Robertson Road School in Mangere where there was a fortuitous meeting with the BOT chair who spoke of the need for additional support staff across the school. The signatures gathered there brought the days’ total up to around 500. Excellent!