James Nash State High School captains Brittany Newmann, Kate Groundwater, Ricky Dann and Matt Hourigan.
James Nash State High School captains Brittany Newmann, Kate Groundwater, Ricky Dann and Matt Hourigan. Renee Pilcher

Back to school for civic leaders

JAMES Nash State High School's commitment to its Principal for a Day program attracted two of the region's chief community leaders on Monday.

Walking the hallways at James Nash were Gympie mayor Ron Dyne and University of the Sunshine Coast executive dean John Bartlett.

The program allowed the community leaders a direct insight into the many wonderful things happening within Queensland state schools.

James Nash State High School principal Darrin Edwards was pleased with the day's success.

"Business and community leaders job shadow a principal for a normal school day (or part of the day) and have the chance to interact with students, serve as role models and provide students with the benefit of their particular areas of expertise," he said.

"Participants in the program gain an insight into the innovative, successful and challenging programs at the heart of Queensland's state education system."

On Monday, the two eager stand-ins started the day visiting classrooms and observing lessons before meeting the school's captains during their regular leadership meeting. The leadership meeting allowed the captains to discuss progress on the year's priorities.

Cr Dyne and Prof Bartlett were later briefed by the acting head of department for mathematics, Daniel Burdett, on the school's implementation of the new national curriculum.

Prof Bartlett, executive dean of the faculty of science, health, education and engineering at Sunshine Coast University, said he was pleased to be at the school.

"Always delighted to accept the invitation to be principal for a day at James Nash High School," he said.

As the University of the Sunshine Coast continued to expand its educational offerings to the Gympie region and Prof Bartlett highlighted the relationship between the university and the secondary school.

Likewise, Cr Dyne was singing the program's praises. "It is always a pleasure to visit a school that is progressively well led and has the interest of its (students) at heart," he said.

"The interface between teachers and students is obvious."

The Principal for a Day program has been running at James Nash for six years, driven by the belief the program was an opportunity for the school to show its pride in the work of its many staff.

Gympie Times


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