For many of our Girls’ School students, the saying ‘home is where the heart is’ holds true. In addition to the time they spent at home, our girls have spent significant amount of their waking hours over the years at our school on Remuera Road. Therefore, it was especially nostalgic on the morning of 27 May as our girls walked through the hall of the Saint Kentigern Girls’ School on Remuera Road for one last assembly.
The busy atmosphere and cheery chatters filled the air as the girls arrived. The Kapa Haka team led by proud alumni began the ceremony with a heartfelt waiata, welcoming invited guests, students and staff.
In her address, Principal Juliet Small reflected on the leaps the school had taken from a mere 90 to 280 girls over the years. She said, “We have grown in both size and reputation and have much to be proud of. We treasure our heritage and traditions from the Corran days, celebrate all we have achieved together at Saint Kentigern Girls’ School and take with us precious memories.”
Some of the items that had moved with the girls to the New Girls School on Shore Road included beautiful pieces of art, pianos, and outdoor seating. In the new Garden of Honour on Shore Road, a flax bush which was gifted to Dr Sandra Hastie and the Kate Shepherd camelia, which are linked to the school’s heritage had been planted there.
Ms Small went on to explain, with the help of the Head Girl Brooke Rowntree, Chapel Prefect Sophia Fulford and Year 2 Adeline Scott, that everyone had been busy packing and will take the best parts of the school with them. Topping the list are our values, our faith, our heritage and traditions, our girls, staff, and memories.
“It is the end of an era and the beginning of another. We will always feel a connection to this place and there is a little part of our heart that we leave behind. I ask that each of you take in and be proud of what we have collectively achieved here at the Girls’ School at Remuera Road,” Ms Small added.
The Saint Kentigern Girls’ School premises on Remuera Road will be the new home to Kadimah School and the Auckland Hebrew Community. Saint Kentigern Girls’ School had gifted the school mural and a digital copy of this has now been placed in the new school.
The proceedings of the assembly which was attended by the Trust Board Chair Mark Conelly, Trust Board member Kim McGregor, Executive Trustee Dr Kevin Morris, Head Girls’ mother Jo Rowntree and past Head Girls Jaime Chandler (2019), Mikayla Chung (2020) and Charlotte Lee (2021) was a fitting tribute and celebration of the many achievements it has achieved over the years. The orchestra and choir were the first to perform, followed by an apt Choral Poem ‘Journeys’ and a befitting final song, ‘So long, farewell’. In between these performances, Head Girls past and present took turns to share their fondest memories at the school, and a video highlighting key events over the last 10 years was played, before Chaplain Reverend Reuben Hardie came forward to close the ceremony.
It was a beautiful ceremony to remember the abundance of memories and achievements made over the years, one that will be remembered for years to come.