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A Kiwi Principal's wise words for the new year
Hora Hora School principal Pat Newman has had a post go viral as students launch into the new school year
00:00 / 02:53
Kiwi As

A Whangārei principal's viral letter to parents encourages and celebrates differences

He urges parents to have a five minute chat with your kiddos ahead of the school year.

School has started for some of our kids and ahead of the new year, some sage advice from Whangārei’s Hora Hora School principal Pat Newman has gone viral, resonating with parents worldwide.

With over 50 years of experience in education, Pat shared a heartfelt message on the school's Facebook page to discuss the role parents play in their children's education.

“I’m asking you to please sit down with your tamariki for just 5 minutes and explain that being very tall, short, chubby, skinny, black or white is no joke,” he said in the post.

“You should not tease other kids if they think they are one of those.”

Pat added: “Teach them not to exclude someone because they’re different. Explain that teasing hurts and that they go to school to learn, not compete!”

Pat also shared 29 positive ‘learn to’ prompts for students to pick up in the school year.

“I think if they actually put into action what those words mean, we will have a fantastic change in our society,” Pat said via NZ Herald.

While the post originated elsewhere, it was Pat’s personalised touch that caught viral attention worldwide, spreading across Aotearoa, Australia and the United States.

The post now has over 5.5k reshares, with comments including “Well said”, “Excellent” and “Wise words for little ones 💜💜💜…..& big ones ….”

Our very own Breakfast Club celebrated the post saying: “I mean you can do all you can as a teacher, but it’s the stuff at home, it’s the everyday stuff. It’s the manners, the punctuality. You can’t expect teachers to teach that to your kids if you’re not doing it at home.”

Ahead of the exciting new school year Lana, Adam and Paul added: “It’s about celebrating everyone because you’re different. If you were all the same, how boring would school be?”

So, let’s have the chats, and encourage each other to be kind, respectful and celebrate our own and others' differences.