Smaller school better fit
Central Southland College's new deputy principal has a positive vision for the Winton secondary school.
Cameron Davis, the former head of social sciences at James Hargest College, is settling in well to his new role and says it's a pleasant change.
"Well there are just 485 students here, rather than 1500, so it will be much easier to get to know more of the kids in a smaller school - and that's something I like."
But he said his role was about more than just knowing the kids well, and he wanted to push them to achieve to their potential
"It's a big part of my role to foster the support systems we have here. It's about maintaining that cool relationship that we have with the kids, while at the same time pushing the goals of our motto ‘To the Heights' and making sure that students live up to that.
"Young people are under more pressure these days - we have to help them make good decisions around behaviour and subject choice.
"We want to build good decision-makers and support students along the way. Building those good relationships with kids can help them to excel in sport, in the classroom and in opening doors later on."
And Mr Davis said he saw the benefits to students in attending smaller schools.
"Because of the numbers there are more opportunities for young people to expose themselves to new things."
Originally from Taranaki, he said Central Southland College had a familiar feel to it because in many ways it was similar to Opunake High School, the rural secondary school which he attended.
"It's kind of like returning to my roots."
And though he had only been in Southland since 2011, having moved from Tauranga Boys' College, he felt like he was here to stay.
"We've just loved Southland and we don't think we would move anywhere else."
The Southland Times