Frankton school’s head girl

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While anxiously awaiting the new government’s funding nod to build their school, the board of Frankton’s new primary has nevertheless appointed a high-calibre principal.

Former Southland principal Deborah Dickson will head the 560-pupil Remarkables Primary due to open in early 2010 on Lake Avenue.

Board chairman Roy Thompson says Dickson comes with “outstanding references”, proven leadership and a passion for the school’s objectives including inquiry-based learning.

The board had 28 applicants, many in senior positions prepared to take a pay cut to come here. Dickson, 39, heads the junior department at an independent girls’ school, Ladies Methodist College, in Perth, Australia.

From 2003-05 she was principal of Invercargill’s Salford Primary and for the previous four years headed the junior department at St Andrew’s College, Christchurch.Dickson’s parents live in Cromwell and she has immediate family in Queenstown, Thompson says.

Dickson takes up her job, which includes appointing staff, setting the curriculum and liaising with the Wakatipu’s three other primary schools, on April 27 next year.