Deputy steps up at Maclean High

WHEN students return to Maclean High School this morning after their summer holiday, they won’t be the only ones feeling a little excited about starting a new school year.

After serving as deputy principal at the school for the past 10 years, Tony Carr will take on the top job.

Being in charge of more than 1100 students is a daunting task, but Mr Carr is well-prepared.

“This will be my 33rd year of teaching,” Mr Carr told The Daily Examiner.

Mr Carr believes that Maclean High School has benefited greatly from the management and stewardship of former principal Glenn Brown.

Mr Brown was in charge of the school for the previous 19 years, and he has left behind a well-structured environment for both students and teachers.

Principal Carr has identified two of the key challenges facing the school and his management in the year ahead.

“This year will see an even greater emphasis on the changing role of technology in education,” he said.

“There will be intensive training in computers and technology for our teachers, especially those teachers of our Year 9 students.”

Mr Carr said additional training in technology for high school teachers was necessary so they could keep a step ahead of students often quite tech-savvy already.

“All our Year 9 students will be receiving a new laptop computer later in term one,” said Mr Carr, adding that students entering Year 10 were already equipped with a laptop of their own from last year.

Thousands of laptops are being handed out to all Year 9 students across New South Wales this year as part of the Rudd Government’s Digital Education Revolution.

“There is a big shift in the delivery of education,” Mr Carr said.

“All our science labs have been re-equipped and we are preparing for a trade training centre at the school later in the year,” he said.

The other big issue facing Maclean High School is the ongoing problem of how to best manage the flying-fox colony which is located in the scrub area bordering the school.

“During the school break the bats have encroached further into the school,” Mr Carr said.

As a short-term solution air-conditioning is being installed in the rooms worst affected by the invasive smell of the bats.

Mr Carr is a member of the working committee on bats, and is focused on finding a solution that is acceptable to the school community.

“We are hoping for a commonsense solution,” he said.

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