Spending a day experiencing what it’s like to attend one of the Bay’s top schools is proving a hit with potential students.
ACG Tauranga, an independent preschool, primary and secondary school that opened in Pyes Pa in 2015, offers prospective students the opportunity to be a ‘Student for a Day’.
Around 90 per cent of current students have been students for a day.
Enrolment Manager Sharron Angus says everyone is encouraged to give it a go.
“It allows the student to meet all their teachers, develop a connection with other students in the class and get an idea of how a normal school day would be,” she says. “It also provides an insight into the school so that the student can take an active part in discussions with their parents.”
Year 7 student Charles Anderson experienced being a Student for a Day this year.
“I think the best thing was meeting everyone and gazing in awe at the massive school grounds,” he said. “The students were extremely helpful and accepting. And I was really pleased about the level of difficulty of the lessons I experienced as the school I was attending at the time was not challenging me enough.”
Students are teamed up with a buddy to show them around and accompany them throughout the day. It’s a coveted position.
“Selecting them is always a process,” Mrs Angus said. “Everyone wants to be the buddy. Often a teacher will arrive at reception with three to five buddies because everyone was so excited about having a student for a day.”
For the school, it’s the best way to demonstrate what lies at its heart – personalised education, a family feel, and teachers who go the extra mile.
And it has proven effective – almost every student goes on to enrol.
“It made me feel a lot more comfortable settling in because I knew the people, the timetable and the teachers,” Charles said. “I felt less nervous than I had when I moved from England to my first school in New Zealand.”