Fundraising needed as Kuranui sets sights high

By, Nathan Crombie

A costly three-year strategy that demands intense fundraising and community support has been unveiled for Kuranui College.

College principal Geoff Shepherd announced the three-year plan to a packed auditorium at the school's 53rd annual senior academic prizegiving on Wednesday night.

He said the school needed to develop new income streams as the Ministry of Education's operations grant was inadequate. "The board and I have made the decision to undertake fundraising on such a large scale reluctantly - it isn't our core business - but we have no choice if we all want Kuranui College to be an outstanding school," he said.

The proposed strategy would keep the school focused on achievement and success, Mr Shepherd said, and relied on community support for fundraising to a greater degree than ever before. "We all want a college that can and will deliver an excellent education for the young people of the Southern Wairarapa," Mr Shepherd said during his prizegiving speech.

"Excellence is a fine goal and in many areas of the college we see excellence, but, in fact, the board, which has begun the process of developing a strategic vision for the next three years, has gone even further - we want Kuranui to become known as an outstanding secondary school," he said.

"Unfortunately, outstanding comes at a cost. First of all it is about outstanding teaching, outstanding curriculum and outstanding personal service, but it is also about outstanding buildings, equipment, resources and opportunities and these all cost money - money the Ministry of Education operations grant unfortunately does not adequately provide for."

Mr Shepherd said the college had been developing independent income streams that would become events based. "We are going to have to fundraise to a level the college has not had to do before. Events will become one of the main income streams."

The college would hold four main fundraising events a year under the new strategy, beginning with the Kuranui Twilight Family Picnic on the December 7. He said the picnic would be a food-based fair, selling a range of food and drink and offering old-fashioned games and competitions.

The picnic would also feature a concert by college and local musicians.

As well the college was planning a fun run/walk along the new Rail Trail from Greytown to Woodside over the Easter break next year.

"This is being planned in conjunction with the Rail Trail Trust and we are hoping we can grow the event to become one of the iconic Wairarapa events and attract participants from outside the region," he said.

"Later in the year we will hold another fundraising dinner to mark Matariki. This year's inaugural event was very successful and we are certain we can make this dinner an annual event."

Mr Shepherd said a fourth event had yet to be planned, but several ideas were being considered.

- Wairarapa Times-Age

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