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Graduation for Evakona Education

Last Friday, 26 January, thirty-seven Japanese students graduated from Evakona education in whitianga. They had spent ten months preparing for a two-year education at senior level of ain a New Zealand high school of their choice. Two of the students would be staying to attend Mercury Bay Area School
 |  Pauline Stewart  | 
The graduation was joyful and well organised Whitianga is very proud of its English Language school and the programme it offers is an Evakona Education located on 18 South Highway, next to the Mercury Bay Area School, prepares teens to live and study in a New Zealand high school the following year. As well as studying English, the preparation includes, general confidence building, camping, self-defence classes, presentations, visiting schools, mathematics 9understanding the English terms and methods). The homestay experience is definitely a central facet to the experience of each student, creating very special memories when belonging to a household of a different language and culture.   Evakona has earned an excellent reputation – from the achievements of the students, the experience of the homestay by hosts and students, and the way the school and its students connect with and integrate into the local community. The school is run by a very professional and caring team. At the lead is Principal Eriko Mclean and Deputy Principal, Rachael Mayne with Eriko’s daughter, Ako close at hand as student counsellor.  Eriko established Evakona in 2001 after coming from Japan with her three children to teach at Mercury Bay Area School.  Ako was just seven and attended the primary section of MBAS. Eriko’soriginal aim was to support overseas students who came to study at the high school. “From my own experience of ten years teaching at MBAS, I knew the importance of teaching quality English and providing caring support for overseas students especially while they are making the adjustment to life in New Zealand,” says Eriko. This is exactly what Evakona has been doing. Eriko explained that the system of education in Japan can be very rigid. At Evakona, the focus was not just an academic one, but on individual abilities and interests preparing students for life (classes are small). “In the Japanese curriculum, everyone must do the same; it is test driven, but here the students have the freedom to pursue something they are interested in. My children were artistic and I could see that in the New Zealand system there was room to explore art and develop their talents. The majority of students are from Japan and they come in a group. After the ten months of preparation to attend a New Zealand high school, they will attend a college of their choice somewhere in the upper north island.  However, Evakona has also had a number of students from parts of Europe who love the international mix  and also the varied and exciting outdoor life that Evakona Education offers.     “I am very proud of my team. They are excellent at what they do. We care about our students and aim to ensure that they are happy and achieving their goals.”         Extracts from our students daily journals they would like to share with you.   “I met new friends along the way who inspired me to do better.” – Sachika   “I came to Evakona in July last year. I felt very anxious and worried about meeting teachers, friends and homestay, because I didn’t have confidence in my English skills, but now I have it and my conversation skill has improved a lot.” – Erika   “When I first came to Whitianga, I was surprised to see so much nature there. I was especially surprised that the sea was so close.” – Kosho   “The time I spent in Evakona was very precious to me, and it was a happy time. I am also grateful to my friends, the kind teachers and my host family. Thanks to everyone. The goal I’ve been holding since the beginning through studying abroad is to know myself. It was fulfilling every day, so I was able to get to know my new self by having a lot of experiences.” – Risa O   Spending time in NZ is irreplaceable, and gives me a lot of experiences. I want to use the experiences to do my best in high school – Risa K