New Zealand's Rural School 'Good Sorts' Found

Rural New Zealand has voted!

The five best ‘good sorts’ in rural schools from around the country have been unearthed as part of the Stafix 'Take a Stand for Good Sorts in rural schools’ campaign.

They are school cleaner Beverley Howe from Glenham School (Southland); principal of Kopane School (Manawatu), Neal Duff; principal of Waituna West School, Glen Richardson (Manawatu); caretaker of Ohaupo School (Waikato), Scott Coley and friend of Apiti School, Jock Bielski (Manawatu).

The winning five ‘good sorts’ have each won $3,000 for their rural school to spend on a project of the school’s choice. ‘Good sorts’ were able to be nominated by members of their local school or community.

‘Take a Stand for Good Sorts in rural schools’ campaign was a result of leading electric fencing brand Stafix from Tru-Test Group seeking to find the people who are making the biggest difference to rural schools.

Tru-Test Group’s NZ Marketing Manager Shaun Owen says 'Take a Stand for Good Sorts in rural schools' was a chance for rural communities to identify and celebrate those special people in rural schools who beaver away, often behind-the-scenes and beyond the call of duty”.

The winning ‘goods sorts’ generosity and commitment is epitomised by that of Waituna West School Principal Glen Richardson.

Glen has set up a school farm, a gardening group and an engineering group (which even built a small motorbike that has been ridden around Manfield). He has led the drive for a new all-weather sports field and is raising funds with the goal of adding a third teacher. His hunting keeps school fundraising events in venison and sausages, he runs an adults’ ukulele group and even drives the school bus when needed.

The success of the ‘Take a Stand for Good Sorts in rural schools’ campaign follows the success of last year's "Take a Stand for rural rugby clubs" when Stafix helped rural rugby clubs refurbish their clubrooms and stands.

Below is an extract from the respective nominations for the other four winning ‘Good Sorts’

Jock Bielski: Much loved by all the school’s pupils for his support of a whole range of school activities.

Scott Coley: A caretaker who takes weekly guitar lessons for 30 pupils for free and organises concerts and trips, including Christmas carols at the local retirement village and at fundraisers. 

Neal Duff: Uses his old Ford Falcon like a school taxi, taking children to and from sports events and to a myriad of activities inside and outside of school.

Beverly Howe: Involved in almost every aspect of the school, from coaching the T ball coach to fundraising for our school, maintaining the school grounds and
 expecting little in return.