Already adept at balancing being a parent and studying, School for Young Parents students have shown they can cut it on the netball court too.

The Rotorua School for Young Parents hosted an annual netball tournament for Teen Parent units from throughout New Zealand at the Westbrook netball courts yesterday.

Teacher-in-charge Wendy Mack said 16 of New Zealand's 24 Teen Parent units attended the tournament.

She said there were a lot of benefits.


"There's the team work leading up to today and for our girls especially there's a sense of pride that everyone's here in Rotorua.

"They've got tutus on, they're having fun, it's a really enjoyable day out of their lives. They also love netball," Mack said.

She said Teen Parent units were an opportunity for students whose education had been interrupted by pregnancy or parenting.

"We have lots of successes, we have lots of advocates out there now. We've had nearly 600 young women through our school - that's a lot of people to have another chance at education, who may not have had one.

"Sport is expensive to participate in . . . this is one of those things the girls can keep doing and they do love it, so it's wonderful," she said.

STRETCH: Rotorua's Faith Playle (in pink) playing against Wairarapa. PHOTO/STEPHEN PARKER
STRETCH: Rotorua's Faith Playle (in pink) playing against Wairarapa. PHOTO/STEPHEN PARKER

Rotorua School for Young Parents teacher Kate Townsley said the tournament was a great opportunity to show what Rotorua has to offer.

"A lot of the schools are doing assessments and school work as part of their trip. They're staying in accommodation and eating out here - it's actually a big outdoor education experience for the girls.

"We've got teams from as far as Wellington, Auckland, right around the North Island. It's such a good buzz, the girls have been so excited about it. Even this morning all the girls were here early practising, it's a big exciting event on the calendar.


"A lot of these girls have been representatives for their towns maybe prior to this, so by giving them an opportunity to come back to this they actually play at a very high level," Townsley said.