Patricia Jackson has been appointed Finley High School acting principal for the next two terms.
Mrs Jackson had been serving as deputy principal, however she was elevated to the role when principal Helen McRae announced she was leaving to take up the position of Director, Educational Leadership for the Deniliquin Network.
Mrs Jackson said despite the change it’s still business as usual at Finley High School.
‘‘We’ll still implement the school strategic plan,’’ she said.
‘‘We weren’t able to have the easiest transition in terms of work load and because of the timing, and it did put a bit of extra pressure on us all, but it’s still been smooth because of the excellent staff.’’
Mrs Jackson is very familiar with the high school, having been a former student and then teaching HSIE and business and legal studies for more than 30 years.
She said it’s the Finley High students that bring her back to school every year.
‘‘They students are the best. You see them outside of school in the community playing football or netball.
‘‘It brings me such joy listening to them talk about their lives and they like to know their teachers care about them. It’s great that the kids can have that sort of interaction with the teachers.’’
Mrs Jackson said Mrs McRae’s departure did come as a shock to the staff and students.
‘‘It wasn’t the best timing but there was nothing anyone could do about that,’’ she said.
‘‘The student reaction has been positive with the transition, but they were initially disappointed. Helen was a popular principal and will still be living in Finley.’’
Mrs McRae’s new role will include working with 21 schools in Deniliquin and surrounding areas including Finley and Jerilderie public schools.
‘‘I will primarily be working with principals to build their capacity and the capacity of their staff to improve student learning and engagement in all facets of schooling,’’ Mrs McRae said.
‘‘I will be helping each school achieve their vision as outlined in their school plans.’’
Mrs McRae said she was already missing the Finley High School life and recently attended the Music And Dance Drama Design (MADDD) evening.
‘‘I was thrilled to attend MADDD to see the amazing artistic talents of the students,’’ she said.
‘‘I hope our local communities continue to support the school and the hard work they do together to ensure students get the best possible education.
‘‘Finley High School is a very special school with amazing students and an extremely supportive staff,’’ Mrs McRae said.