Sandra is a senior crimes and justice reporter for the Bay of Plenty Times.

Schoolchildren learn value of teamwork

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Oropi School student Lauren Pike, 10, competing in the Leaky Bucket challenge at the Trustpower/Gate Pa New World Tauranga Top School Competition. Photo / George Novak
Oropi School student Lauren Pike, 10, competing in the Leaky Bucket challenge at the Trustpower/Gate Pa New World Tauranga Top School Competition. Photo / George Novak

Plenty of loud cheering and loads of laughter rang out as pupils from 24 schools competed in the 16th annual Trustpower/Gate Pa New World Tauranga Top School Competition.

Hosted by Gate Pa School yesterday, teams from the 24 local schools challenged themselves in the eight rounds of crazy fun activities all vying for the title of Top School.

Selwyn Ridge School took out the number one spot in three of the eight events, making them the overall winner of the competition for the second year running.

Josh Court of Selwyn Ridge School throws himself into leaky bucket action.
Josh Court of Selwyn Ridge School throws himself into leaky bucket action.

Events included the Magic Carpet Ride, Nutech Security Railway Track, Crombie Lockwood Leaky Bucket, PGG Wrightson's Horizontal Bungy, and Gate Pa New World Catch and Pass.

Supporters, including school mates, parents and the cheerleading teams on the sidelines who were dressed to impress, cheered their school teams on to success.

Cheerleading teams were judged on their enthusiasm, originality, chants, perseverance, movement, dress and teamwork, with Omanu School taking out the title as Top Cheerleading Team.

Oropi School student Lauren Pike, 10, said: "It's been really great fun. I especially liked the horizontal bungy and the leaky bucket events."

Proud mother Jane Pike said the family moved from Auckland to Tauranga two years ago and her daughter would not have had the opportunity to compete in something like this anywhere else.

"It's not only great fun for the children but challenges them to all work as a team. It's been a really fun day."

Parent Claire Chapman said her daughter competed last year, and this year it was her 10-year-old son Joseph's turn to represent St Thomas More Catholic School.

"I think it's a great event, as it challenges the children to work together. It's really good to see the kids having so much fun and there has been lots of laughter. It's a great spectator event as well."

Events organiser and Gate Pa School principal Richard Inder said the competition was a way for students to compete against others in a fun environment.

All the events required great teamwork, co-ordination and endurance, he said.

Mr Inder said it had been a great day, and the weather could not have been better.

"Everyone's had a great time but it's still been very competitive between the schools."

Mr Inder said Gate Pa School's two teams had punched above their weight, as they were one of the smallest schools entered. The event was also a fundraiser for the school.

16th Top School Competition results:

Overall School

First: Selwyn Ridge School

Second: Maungatapu School

Third: Greenpark School

Top Cheerleading Team

First: Omanu School

Second: Selwyn Ridge School

Third: Greenpark School

- Bay of Plenty Times

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