Dedication to Boarding Recognised at Rangi Ruru
One of Rangi Ruru’s much loved and longest-serving staff members has been recognised for her contribution and dedication at the Boarding School Association’s national conference in Queenstown.
Frances Barnett was awarded the Outstanding Contribution to Boarding Award for her 25 years’ service to the school and the girls who live in the boarding house.
Beginning her long and memorable career in 1991 as a Matron in the original Junior Boarding House in Te Koraha. In 2002, Frances somewhat sadly transitioned over to the new modern boarding house where she continues to work with girls today as Boarding Manager.
During her time, Frances has worked alongside five Directors of Boarding and current Director, Treena Ruwhiu says not only is Frances a valued member of staff but is a treasured part of the lives of so many Rangi girls.
“Frances has received literally hundreds of letter of appreciation as well as invitations to twenty firsts and weddings from boarders, Gap Tutors, Residential Assistants and Managers who appreciated the time, energy and love she showered upon them. You would be very hard pressed to find a boarder or a staff member, past or present, that didn’t love and appreciate Frances for her integrity, commitment, loyalty and kindness towards them,” said Mrs Ruwhiu.
“Frances gives 100% of herself to everyone and never hesitates to stay late or arrive early if it benefits the girls. And she can’t stop worrying about them when she leaves either,” added Mrs Ruwhiu.
Frances is also the School Nurse, so if a daygirl or boarder has a medical issue Frances is there to see to it that they get the best possible care, whether it be physical or mental health problems. She also organises all of the medication for the boarders, including their flu vaccinations and professional development for staff to keep up to date with first aid.
In addition, Frances has had a long association with the Rangi Ruru rowing community and has also taken on the of International House Dean; a position she had the initiative to create, realising that these girls from a variety of countries often struggled with the cultural shock of living in New Zealand.
Frances also initiated an ongoing relationship with Cholmondeley Children’s Centre, a children’s charity based in Christchurch that provides short-term emergency and planned respite care and education to children (aged 3-12 years) whose families are experiencing genuine stress or crisis. In order to provide for this charity, Frances introduced the Annual Rangi Ruru Boarders’ Concert.
“We feel very fortunate to have Frances as part of our Boarding family and could not think of a more deserving recipient of this award. Congratulations we are very proud of you.”