Key makes his­tory at Dun­stan

Central Otago Mirror - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - JO MCKEN­ZIE-MCLEAN

Alexan­dra rolled out the red car­pet for the Prime Min­is­ter for a visit to ‘‘see some­thing a bit dif­fer­ent’’.

John Key started the day at Dun­stan High School, mak­ing his­tory as the first Prime Min­is­ter to visit the school. He then got his hands dirty in the sand­pit with some early child­hood pupils at Kids­first Alexan­dra Kinder­garten.

‘‘The kinder­garten was beau­ti­ful and the school was ab­so­lutely fan­tas­tic and you can see from the suc­cesses those young­sters are get­ting.

‘‘We can take a great deal of con­fi­dence in it but we should be sup­port­ing ru­ral schools. I mean, Dun­stan hadn’t had a Prime Min­is­ter ever go there, and when you think about it, they should have by now, so it was good to go.’’

He took time to an­swer some press­ing ques­tions from chil­dren. Fletcher Corderoy, 4, of Alexan­dra Kinder­garten, asked him how many bees there were at the Bee­hive.

‘‘Do you know...none,’’ Key said. ‘‘But they were want­ing to put some bees down at Gov­ern­ment House just down the road. It is called the Bee­hive be­cause it looks like a bee­hive.’’

Kids­first Alexan­dra Kinder­garten head teacher Lisa Low­ery said it was a priv­i­lege to have the Prime Min­is­ter at the kinder­garten.

Some chil­dren had pre­pared im­por­tant ques­tions.

‘‘It was great to see his nat­u­ral in­ter­ac­tion with the chil­dren, and many of them re­called how he was help­ing them in the sand­pit, dig­ging and hav­ing fun. Pixi thought it was re­ally funny when Finn asked him to drink the muddy wa­ter.’’

Key said he had wanted to spend time in Alexan­dra to ‘‘see some things that were a bit dif­fer­ent’’, which in­cluded a visit to Earn­scle­ugh Sta­tion where he ob­served Peter Lyon’s shear­ing gang hard at work.

‘‘Ob­vi­ously the ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties are the back­bone of the coun­try, shear­ing isn’t some­thing that gets the level of ex­po­sure I sup­pose that maybe dairy­ing and other things do. I have been a bit to shear­ing shows...but I have

never seen it on the farm.’’

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