‘Real world ex­pe­ri­ence’ on build­ing site

Central Leader - - OUT & ABOUT - TOM CARNEGIE

Auck­land high school stu­dents are fast track­ing their ca­reers in the con­struc­tion in­dus­try by build­ing houses for fam­i­lies in need.

In 2010 One­hunga High School started its con­struc­tion school. Un­der the pro­gramme class times are longer and many of the lessons are held on build­ing sites.

Con­struc­tion school teacher David Eastwood says stu­dents who are ac­cepted into the pro­gramme gain real world ex­pe­ri­ence in all as­pects of the build­ing in­dus­try.

For the past four years the build­ing school has teamed up with the One­hunga One Tree Hill Ro­tary Club and Habi­tat For Hu­man­ity New Zealand to build houses for those in need.

‘‘They take part in all as­pects of the build, of course this in­cludes build­ing but also elec­tri­cal work, plumb­ing and roof­ing,’’ Eastwood says.

The stu­dents work along­side con­trac­tors to con­struct houses for Habi­tat For Hu­man­ity fam­i­lies.

On Novem­ber 15 the fourth house to be built un­der the part­ner­ship was trans­ported from One­hunga High School to Dar­gav­ille where it will be­come a fam­ily home.

Eastwood says work­ing on Habi­tat For Hu­man­ity houses has landed ap­pren­tice­ships for sev­eral stu­dents.

‘‘The team that came for the roof­ing con­trac­tor this year was be­ing led by one of the kids that was in the course fours years ago. ‘‘Another kid in the team took part two years ago and was now half­way through his ap­pren­tice­ship,’’ Eastwood says.

He says one stu­dent this year was of­fered a build­ing ap­pren­tice­ship af­ter strik­ing up con­ver­sa­tion with a con­tract builder on the work site.

The con­struc­tion school is for stu­dents who may have strug­gled in a nor­mal class en­vi­ron­ment or have an in­ter­est in be­com­ing em­ployed in a trade, Eastwood says.

‘‘It is life chang­ing for some kids, if they strug­gle at nor­mal school or if it does not work for them this shows that there are other ways to learn.’’

Paul Look, Habi­tat for Hu­man­ity project man­ager, says the course teaches stu­dents about tak­ing pride in their work.

‘‘What we see here is that those who are ready to learn get snapped up by em­ploy­ers as the course en­sures they come with a year ex­pe­ri­ence.’’

SUPPLIED

One­hunga High School stu­dents have helped build a Habi­tat For Hu­man­ity house for a fam­ily in Dar­gav­ille.

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