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New Director of Schools Partnership Office

24 February 2006

Media release

New Director of Schools Partnership Office

Ken Rapson, principal of Mount Roskill Grammar School, has been appointed Director of the Schools Partnership Office at The University of Auckland.

He will lead the team which recruits and provides course advice to school leavers, and be responsible for fostering the University's relationship with schools.

Mr Rapson succeeds Colin Prentice who is retiring after five years in the role. He will take up his new position in August.

He holds an MSc with honours in biochemistry from Auckland and a teaching diploma from Auckland Secondary Teachers College.

Before becoming principal at Mount Roskill Grammar in 1994 Mr Rapson taught at Auckland Grammar School where he rose to become deputy headmaster. In the early 1980s he was on the staff of Bedford School in England.

During his 12 years at Mount Roskill Grammar the roll has grown from 1576 to 2340 students. Staff numbers total 210. The school won the inaugural Goodman Fielder School of the Year Award in 1998.

His service on outside bodies includes being an executive member of the Auckland Secondary School Heads Association, trustee of the New Zealand Education and Scholarship Trust, and membership of the University's Community Advisory Group.

Mr Rapson believes he can put his skills and knowledge of secondary education to good use in his new position. He has always had "a special interest in where secondary students go next" and looks forward to facilitating their entry to the University.

He wants to help maintain Auckland as New Zealand's flagship university. "It already has excellent credentials in research and I hope to have some influence in making the undergraduate experience of teaching and learning even more positive."

The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stuart McCutcheon, says the University is delighted to have attracted someone of Ken Rapson's calibre and reputation to follow Colin Prentice.

"Colin did an enormous amount to bring us closer to schools up and down the country as well as in Auckland, and in reaching out to prospective students. We are now heavily involved in mentoring and offer a wealth of scholarships both to top achievers and to Maori and Pacific students.

"Ken Rapson has a proven track record at two highly successful schools. He is already well acquainted with the aspirations and activities of the University and we are confident that he will serve us ably in his new role."

ENDS

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