School’s out for pop­u­lar prankster

Biggen­den State School teacher fin­ishes af­ter nine years

Central and North Burnett Times - - EASY EATING - Erica Murree erica.murree@cnbtimes.com.au

AF­TER nine years at the Biggen­den State School Ge­off Parker is done and dusted and ready to hang up his chalk.

On the last day of term the school com­mu­nity gath­ered at a spe­cial cer­e­mony to cel­e­brate his time there.

Prin­ci­pal Ros Rack­e­mann said Mr Parker was a plea­sure to have on staff.

“You will be re­mem­bered for your pas­sion for teach­ing, your car­ing na­ture and pro­fes­sion­al­ism, those Hawai­ian shirts and es­pe­cially those pranks,” Mrs Rack­e­mann said.

She de­scribed Mr Parker as a bit of a prankster with the ma­jor­ity of staff vic­tims.

“Ge­off set a trend at the school wear­ing as the Fri­day uni­form was a Hawai­ian shirt,” she said.

On his fi­nal day staff and some stu­dents joined him wear­ing those colour­ful shirts.

Mrs Rack­e­mann said in the Trade Train­ing Cen­tre that was Mr Parker’s baby, there was a proper place for ev­ery sin­gle tool.

When Mr Parker ar­rived at work on his last day, all the tools were gone.

The stu­dents had played a prank on him, re­mov­ing them but pre­sent­ing them back to him at the cer­e­mony.

For­mer stu­dent Cara Tucker said she was grate­ful to have Mr Parker for a teacher.

“You are a cool old kid on the block,” she said.

“You have left a big im­print on our lives.”

LoftyWendt high­lighted Mr Parker’s pro­fes­sion­al­ism and ded­i­ca­tion and his com­mit­ment dur­ing his time at Biggen­den.

“We feel you have made Anzac Day go from a lit­tle quiet cer­e­mony to what we have to­day,” he said

“Re­mem­brance Day is now a sig­nif­i­cant event in the town due to your in­volve­ment.”

Biggen­den RSL sub-branch sec­re­tary Alex McNaughton said Mr Parker raised the aware­ness of Anzac Day and Re­mem­brance Days to Biggen­den and district school chil­dren.

“For them (the chil­dren) those mem­o­ries will never fade away

For­mer teacher Jean Jones said Mr Parker was a key player in ty­ing the staff to­gether.

“The big tin shed is an im­mense as­set for the school,” she said

“The whole school ben­e­fited not just in­di­vid­u­als.”

Mr Parker said when he left high school didn’t know what he wanted to do.

“I started my work­ing life at Sal­is­bury at aged 17 years as a post­man,” he said.

“The uni­form was com­plete with whis­tle, push bike and hat.”

Later, even though he had never done man­ual arts, he took on a coach and mo­tor body builder course.

Then he went to TAFE and be­came a school teacher.

“Teach­ing took me to Boys­town, Lo­gan Lea High school be­fore com­ing out into the coun­try to Kep­nock, Isis and Biggen­den in April 2007,” he said.

“So you never know where life is go­ing to take you.”

Mr Parker said he had fan­tas­tic mem­o­ries of his time at Biggen­den, es­pe­cially of the peo­ple and the kids.

“Thanks for the mem­o­ries,” Mr Parker said.

PHOTO: ERICA MURREE

HAPPY MEM­O­RIES: Biggen­den State School teacher Ge­off Parker was pre­sented with one of his Hawai­ian shirts in a frame on his re­tire­ment from teach­ing.

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