Mu­ral de­picts school’s faith and fun

Matamata Chronicle - - Out & About - REXINE HAWES

If you want to know what St Joseph’s School stands for, well, the writ­ing is on the wall - lit­er­ally. Prin­ci­pal Yvonne Mar­shall reck­ons the Mata­mata school is the best and now she has the colour­ful ev­i­dence to prove it.

A mu­ral, cre­ated with stu­dents at Mata­mata Col­lege, was re­cently un­veiled at the school, in an ef­fort to pro­mote the school.

Prin­ci­pal Yvonne Mar­shall said the school found it dif­fi­cult in­creas­ing the school’s roll past its 30 pupils, no mat­ter how much pro­mo­tion it tried.

Feed­back to a ques­tion­naire cir­cu­lated through the par­ish in­di­cated that many parish­ioners, whose chil­dren didn’t at­tend the school, didn’t re­alise there was a school next to the church.

‘‘It looked like part church, which we are, didn’t re­flect a school.

‘‘We started think­ing, what can we do to make it vi­brant?

‘‘We had a beau­ti­ful new build­ing but there are lots of spaces we could brighten up.

‘‘We had no idea where start.’’

The school wanted a mu­ral that rep­re­sented its val­ues, di­ver­sity, faith and sur­round­ings.

Af­ter see­ing the mu­ral at Rail­side by the Green, Yvonne de­cided to ap­proach Mata­mata Col­lege art teacher Jo­lene Roger­son for her help.

‘‘At that stage we thought about ask­ing for de­signs, and our kids would paint it. of the but it to Go on­line and visit the Mata­mata Chron­i­cle, Neigh­bourly.co.nz page to view our video of the school un­veil­ing the new­mu­ral.

‘‘Jo­lene sug­gested they could do it as an art project.’’

And af­ter see­ing a few con­cepts, Mar­shall said they fi­nally found one which ‘‘pinged’’.

They de­cided to place the mu­ral on a shed at the rear of the school, but clearly vis­i­ble from the street.

‘‘It’s an older shed and it has bright­ened it up beau­ti­fully.’’

The mu­ral was com­pleted in term one, how­ever an ERO visit and a very wet win­ter meant it was pushed back to term four.

‘‘I thought we bet­ter get it placed and blessed be­fore the (col­lege) stu­dents leave and we miss the op­por­tu­nity,’’ said Mar­shall.

The un­veil­ing was held last week, and in­cluded a bless­ing by Par­ish Priest, Fa­ther Leonard Dan­vers.

Mar­shall said the stu­dents had em­braced the mu­ral, which had in­spired them to con­tinue to beau­tify the school.

‘‘We now have ideas for fur­ther art projects to em­bolden our school.’’

REXINE HAWES

Mata­mata Col­lege stu­dents Me­gan Cody, Yas­min Fisher, Vand­hana Devi and Shiphrah Foulidis with St Joseph’s School stu­dents in front of the mu­ral.

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