Mr Wayne Edgar
Principal July 2008 - December 2013Mr Wayne Edgar recently retired Tokomairiro High School Principal passed away on the 14th January 2014 due to an accident.
It is hard to put into words what Wayne came to mean to our school, its community and our lives. We have all lost a friend, a colleague, a mentor and an example of how to be a better person. His legacy survives in us.
Right from his first meeting with the BOT it was clear what sort of man Wayne was. He promised that his priority would always be about relationships and he never wavered from this. He loved hearing what the kids had to say on things that impacted on them, he listened to his staff and board. He used what he learned, to do his utmost to improve the lot of others.
The man you met, face to face, was humble, quiet, and shy. The man you grew to know was intelligent, cautious, scrupulous and honest. His humour was subtle and positive. Wayne’s strategic thinking was one of his real strengths. We used to call it, his ability to see around corners. His clarity of process meant that Tokomairiro High School and Tokomairiro Training blossomed under his guardianship.
Wayne was easy to work with as you never doubted his motives and he could see where dangers may lurk. His memory was phenomenal, small detail and large, important information. He read widely, researching to enhance and refine his strategies. Wayne constantly sought improvement. One of his best sayings was that, “there are no bananas left on the tree but the monkey still keeps climbing it”. This meant that we have to look for new ways to do things in response to changes in education, not just keep doing what we have always done. Often the first conversation in the morning began with him saying, “I woke at 3:00 this morning with an idea…” His mind was never really far from his work.
Wayne was a numbers man. He LOVED data and statistics. This drove his decision making and planning. The school’s finances have never looked better but this was hardly surprising as he had a notoriously tightly zipped back pocket. He was always aware the money he was in charge of was not his own and needed to be protected. He was somewhat of a computer geek and loved the challenges technology presented.
Wayne came to Milton nearly six years ago and joined the Rotary club and the golf club. The former remained an important part of his life here, the latter not so much but it did start his network of friendships off. Wayne worked long hours but also knew how to take time out with his fishing, cycling and his model airplane hobby. Conversations in the staffroom with some of his colleagues were often about flies and lures, perfect spots, cycling without seeing other vehicles, and so on.
Since hearing the news of Wayne’s death, the school office has been a flooded with friends of the school calling in, totally agog with disbelief. Their grief is genuine as men of Wayne’s integrity are few and far between.
We are struggling to accept that Wayne will not be here to learn how the things he set in motion are progressing. He is cherished, appreciated and loved by those of us who were lucky enough to have close working relationships with him. He and his wife Jan were a formidable pair. It is an unforgettable privilege to have learnt from him.