Excitement was high at Samuel Marsden Collegiate School in Karori, Wellington, as students and staff take ownership of their new building, Te Manawa o te Kura – the Heart of the School. Prime Minister John Key performed the official opening of the two spacious Learning Studios, the school foyer and modern iCentre on Wednesday.
Marsden School, with its reputation for providing high quality education, has embraced 21st Century learning. With teachers as facilitators and guides girls are learning how to collaborate and share responsibility for learning outcomes, sought qualities by employers.
“Complementing existing facilities the Learning Studios and iCentre are a wonderful resource in preparing our young women for work and life in the 21st Century”, says Marsden Principal Jenny Williams. “We are excited to gift this building to current students, staff, and generations of girls to come, and thank the many, many people who have made this happen”.
The beautiful building designed by Athfield Architects, is finished inside with natural wood, pops of colour, work spaces and study nooks, with an extensive green vista, providing a peaceful space for collaborative work and independent research and preparation. Connecting the school from end to end the new building takes Marsden from the past into the future, while retaining links to the schools’ long history with the restored Honours’ Board and retention of the original 1926 entrance.
Modelled on best practice work places the Learning Studios are already loved by its young users and the wider Marsden family. With staff committed to providing excellence in education and a loving environment, where students feel safe and supported these, these new facilities will be integral in supporting Marsden girls in their life journey.
The students look forward to showing people around their new Learning Studios, foyer and iCentre, the long awaited heart of the school, Te Manawa o te Kura.
Earlier in the week, the building was blessed in a spine tingling dawn service. Senior students, parents and staff gathered in the dark to witness the historic moment when Kaumātua Kura Moeahu, accompanied by Elizabeth Stewart (representing Marsden women) and iwi from Te Atiawa, followed the conch call over the threshold and into the heart of Marsden – Te Manawa o te Kura. Please click here for a video of the service.