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Education: Takapuna Grammar School

An Introduction to Political Life

Jake Benson will get to sit in National MP Maggie Barry’s seat in the House, in July. This opportunity has come about as a result of being selected as the Youth MP for the North Shore electorate, for 2013.
Jake, in Year 13, did not really know much about politics before applying for this post but he says: “I’ve always liked arguing and enjoy getting my point across.” 
Keen senior students from all North Shore schools were asked to write an essay as part of the process, and give a speech to the selection panel. As Jake researched his essay on The Divisions Among Youth in different Auckland suburbs, he began to realise that he does care about issues that have political implications. Initially his parents were, he said, ‘a little overwhelmed by the idea’ of their son’s political plans but now are just “really proud of me.” The Youth Parliament sits in Wellington in mid-July. The electorate MPs will be billeted while they attend the Beehive.

Three farewells in quick succession
Staff movement in a large school are not unusual but a cluster of farewells of senior staff is not as common.
The school farewelled Mr Ian Lissette at a large afternoon function late last term. Mr Lissette’s 49 years of service to the school is not ever likely to be repeated. His entire professional career has been at Takapuna Grammar and his contribution cannot easily be measured. Speeches and accolades flowed at an occasion with current staff, former staff and former pupils.
Biology teacher, Mr Bob Jenner is also retiring. His tenure is also a long one, beginning in the late 1960s. He has also contributed hugely to the life and times of TGS; as a teacher, a reluctant thespian, a Dean, a sports coach and a parent of two ex-pupils, David and Gareth.  Also off on adventures new is Ms Kim Basse, Deputy Principal. She has accepted the Principalship of Ruapheu College, taking up her appointment in mid-May. She has given enthusiastic service to the school since her arrival in 2008. Not least amongst her achievements is the growth in the numbers involved in the Duke of Edinburgh award.

“Sleep no more, Macbeth doth murder sleep”

Macbeth was the chosen play by ‘director’ Harriett Maire, a TGS ex-pupil, as an entry into the Sheilah Winn Shakespeare festival. She cast Abraham Trask-Coombs and Maya Wyatt in the roles of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, in Act 2, scene 2, just after the killing of King Duncan.

This performance competition runs over two days, at the auditorium at Albany Junior High School; this year with judges Michael Hurst and Raymond Hawthorne. Three ‘teams’ are selected to go to the national final in Wellington, over Queen’s Birthday weekend. A Best 5 minute, Best 15 minute, and Best Overall are chosen. The Macbeth excerpt won Best Overall. In a separate performance of The Winter’s Tale, directed by George Greig (Year 13), actor Adam Pomeroy received an honourable mention.

23 regions are represented in Wellington – so up 60 performances will take the stage, to find the best actors and to select some to go to The Globe, in 2014.

Harriett is making a habit of winning all things Shakespearian – her trip to the Globe is about to happen; an award she won in mid-2012. This was as a result of her own performances and now she is building a reputation on the other side of the curtain.


by Channel Editorial