Ken Hav­ill was a ‘shin­ing light’


An Auck­land prin­ci­pal who se­cured New Zealand’s largest pub­lic school re­build has died.

Ken Hav­ill, the for­mer prin­ci­pal of West­ern Springs Col­lege, died at his west Auck­land home on April 29 after a long ill­ness, aged 67.

His wife of 47 years, Lor­raine, and their two daugh­ters, Paola and Si’alei, were by his side.

Hav­ill was the prin­ci­pal of West­ern Springs Col­lege for 19 years be­fore he re­tired in 2016. He joined the col­lege in 1990.

Dur­ing his time as prin­ci­pal, Hav­ill was at the fore­front of se­cur­ing a $79 mil­lion col­lege re­build – the largest pub­lic school re­build in New Zealand his­tory.

He was also awarded the 2008 Woolf Fisher Fel­low­ship, a pres­ti­gious award for lead­ing sec­ondary teach­ers and prin­ci­pals.

West­ern Springs Col­lege board of trustees chair­man John Loof said Hav­ill had left be­hind a legacy to be proud of.

‘‘He was the driv­ing force be­hind the ap­proval for the re­build, and the progress of the col­lege.

‘‘He changed the course of the school and [had] too many great achieve­ments to men­tion,’’ Loof said.

Prin­ci­pals Association of New Zealand pres­i­dent Michael Wil­liams said Hav­ill was a ‘‘shin­ing light’’.

‘‘He was a very well re­spected prin­ci­pal and ded­i­cated his life for West­ern Springs Col­lege,’’ Wil­liams said.

‘‘He worked in­cred­i­bly hard for a long pe­riod of time for the col­lege.’’

For­mer West­ern Springs Col­lege vale­dic­to­rian Is­abella Leni­han-Ikin said Hav­ill was com­mit­ted to cre­at­ing an ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem that met the needs of all stu­dents.

Leni­han-Ikin served as a stu­dent rep­re­sen­ta­tive to the Board of Trustees with Hav­ill in 2014.

She said Hav­ill be­lieved in the power of Maori ed­u­ca­tion and in­vested in the school’s Maori im­mer­sion unit, Nga Puna o Waio­era.

It saw the col­lege be­come one of the first schools to adopt a co­gov­er­nance re­la­tion­ship in recog­ni­tion of the Treaty of Wai­tangi.

Hav­ill was laid in state at Nga Oho Marae, Nga Puna o Waiorea, West­ern Springs Col­lege yes­ter­day.

A cel­e­bra­tion of his life will be held in the school hall at 11am to­mor­row.

For­mer prin­ci­pal Ken Hav­ill ded­i­cated 19 years to West­ern Springs Col­lege be­fore his re­tire­ment in 2016.

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