COOTAMUNDRA High School will be losing two of its long standing teachers and educators at the end of this school term when principal Garry Mason retires and mathematics head Daryl Shoard takes long service leave.
Mr Mason has been the principal at the school for the past 12 years and Mr Shoard has been teaching mathematics at the school for 35 years.
Over the years both men have been dedicated teachers and educators with a commitment to enuring that their students are in a position to take advantage of the opportunities that are before them.
Over the years they have established strong relationships and friendships with many of their students.
Before coming to Cootamundra Mr Mason was deputy principal at Woolgoola High School and taught at Willyama High School in Broken Hill and at Gunnedah, Coonamble and Taree.
“Cootamundra is a wonderful town and this is a wonderful school,” he said.
“The support the school gets from the community and parents is unbelievable,” he added.
“It was really good seeing a number of our ex students receiving awards at the TAFE presentation, our relationship with TAFE is really strong.”
He said he has always put the students first in terms of trying to make sure they succeed in whatever field they can.
“Some have needed support and others have needed challenging direction,” Mr Mason said.
He said he and his wife Anne, who is also retiring, would be staying in Cootamundra.
“She (Anne) needs a big thankyou for travelling around the countryside for the last 35 years,” he said.
“You can’t do that without the support of your family,” he added.
Mr Mason said teaching has changed in a number of ways over the years particularly the increase in technology, but that isn’t the be all and end all.
“Good teaching is immeasurable and that hasn’t changed,” Mr Mason said.
He said he wanted to thank the students, parents and staff and the community for the support they had given him over the last 12 years.
He said his focus as a teacher and principal has been on the destination of his students rather than solely focussing on has retaining students.
Mr Shoard, who taught at Tumut before coming to Cootamundra, was originally from Young and did his training in Newcastle.
He also says that change in technology have been one of the biggest developments in years as a teacher. He called the first computer at school cost $3,000 and had 24 kilobytes of memory.
There has been more demands put on teachers over the years both in managing the welfare of the students and what they are expected to know when thy walk out of here
During his long service leave he said he intended to spend a lot of time fishing and riding his road bike as well as his bicycle.
He said he was very fond of all his students and kept in touch with a number of them
Of his past students Mr Shoard recalled one had become a doctor and one a nurse and both had said they would look after him in his old age.
Another past student who had become a financial adviser had also offered to provide him advice and another had become a mechanic and now works on his car.
He said he was proud of the fact that his son Ben was studying to become a maths teacher and that Ben would become the first student he had taught who would become a maths teacher.
SAD DEPARTURE: Cootamundra High School principal Garry Mason (left) and head of mathematics Daryl Shoard are pictured walking out of the school for the final time as they either retire or take long service leave at the end of the school term.
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.