Rosy school days
Before principal Diana Tregoweth, her deputy Sandy Tritt and their far-sighted board of trustees decided to buy a FUSO Rosa, things most kids take for granted were beyond the reach of their students.
Papatoetoe West School isn’t located in the wealthiest area of Auckland. Little things matter, like the cost of hiring a bus to take the kids to the zoo, or the theatre.
This isn’t just a story of getting out of the classroom - there’s real value to be had in that excursion, other than feeling the breeze and the sun and the freedom.
“These experiences enrich learning in several ways, and it’s really important for the children,” says Sandy.
“A lot of our students miss out on pretty common experiences,” adds Diana. “So it’s great that we can now fill in some of those gaps.”
Take the school’s trip to the Tim Bray Theatre Company in Takapuna. As part of the journey, the Rosa cruised over the Harbour Bridge – something that wouldn’t be special for a lot of people, but it was for the students.“When they wrote about the day afterwards, there was as much about the bridge as there was about the play!” says Sandy.
“It was mindblowing, because a lot of them had never seen or travelled over the bridge before. Having our own transport means we can now provide more of those types of experiences.”
Papatoetoe West’s average class size is 24, which makes the 25-seat Rosa School Bus a perfect fit. Proven in New Zealand over more than two decades, FUSO Rosa is renowned for its reliability, comfortable, durable interiors; quiet, smooth performance; economical fuel consumption; and hill-conquering power.
A combination of word-of-mouth and excellent service from Wes Gielink at Keith Andrews Auckland made the process a no-brainer, even if spending money on a bus can be a daunting prospect.“We knew that Keith Andrews had provided Rosa buses for a number of educational institutions, so that gave us a lot of confidence,” says Sandy.
“Once we got in touch and started liaising with Wes, it was just so easy. Wes was really supportive.”
Buying the Rosa has proven to be a holistic experience for the school and the kids, who were given the chance to make their mark by contributing some of the artwork that adorns the bus – along with the motto ‘Together we strive for growth through learning’.
By helping to expand the horizons of Papatoetoe West’s students, thanks to the vision of Diana, Sandy and the school’s trustees, Rosa is now playing an integral role in that collective journey of personal and academic growth.