SHARE
Job done . . . Te Pakihi O Maru School teacher Henry Godkin shows his new look after having his head shaved as a fundraiser to help his class to school camp. PHOTO: KAYLA HODGE

An Oamaru teacher has sacrificed his locks to get his whole class to camp.

Henry Godkin teaches years 5 and 6 pupils at Te Pakihi O Maru School and was spurred into action, because some of his class were struggling to make it to the school camp.

‘‘Quite a few kids, not only in school, but in my class . . . are not quite as lucky as other kids,’’ Mr Godkin said.

‘‘We had quite a few kids who were humm-ing and haa-ing about coming on the camp because of the cost.’’

The children would leave for camp on Monday, spend three nights in Kurow, and it would include a trip to Mt Cook.

Although there had been an effort made to keep costs as low as possible, the $90 charged was still ‘‘a bit too much’’ for some parents, he said.

‘‘I thought it was such a shame, because you know . . .a lot of them have never seen Mt Cook.

‘‘They’ve never had those experiences to get out of Oamaru, basically. I thought, it’s such a shame that they’re missing out on that, because of costs, really.’’

Although various fundraisers had been held within the school community, Mr Godkin wanted to try to raise funds from the wider community.

‘‘One of my colleagues talked about shaving his moustache back in the day, and that gave me the idea to shave my head.’’

A GoFundMe page he set up had so far raised about $1100, with extra donations from staff members and the Albion Cricket and Tainui Hockey clubs — both of which Mr Godkin was a member of — taking the running total to about $1300.

Thanks to the amount raised, it was likely all the pupils would now be able to go on the camp free of charge, he said.

‘‘At the finish of this whole fundraiser, we’ve had three or four extra kids be able to come on camp, because the costs have disappeared . . .their parents don’t have to worry about that, which is lovely. And then, if we do have any extra, we’re going to keep that in a little pool and save it for next year’s camp.’’

Mr Godkin had his head shaved in school assembly last Friday, and children in his class were given first go with the scissors, before fellow teacher Anna Miller finished the job. The children also decided his full beard should be reduced to a moustache.

The reaction to the haircut had so far been ‘‘really positive’’, Mr Godkin said.

‘‘Everybody’s been saying it looks great . . . I’m not so positive about it, to be honest.’’

Mr Godkin came to New Zealand from Nottingham in the United Kingdom two years ago, and Te Pakihi O Maru had been his first job in New Zealand. He was moving to a new job in Auckland next year, although he had ‘‘absolutely loved’’ his time in North Otago.

‘‘My partner and I have really, really enjoyed it . . .We have made some really, really good friends here, and it’s a really nice little community.

‘‘We’ll be sad to go, but ready for a new experience. Ready to go and try something new.’’