30 years since I started form 3. Not at this school though (although this was a gathering of the 1983 3 rd formers, but I wouldn't fit anywhere else , so went.)
Funny things school reunions. Since I started in form 5 , I didn't know huge amounts of people or remember many people.
It is a bizarre thing being hauled out of a South Auckland high school in your 5 th form year (co-ed) and being put into a state girls school in one of the wealthiest parts of New Zealand. Even if I am white it really was a culture shock. These girls did homework! They wore raincoats and used umbrellas. They went clubbing in form 4. Their older brothers and sisters drove them places over the weekend.
I did okay at school- not wow, but okay and still got into university, went to teachers college for library studies etc.
We all lead different lives. Several have had hard lives. But I still looked at all my classmates there and still saw lucky, privileged people. Who still may not realise how lucky they are because of where they went to school and where they grew up, that they had opportunities from the start.
I think growing up in South Auckland and then being hauled off to the other side of Auckland has taught me a lot. It taught me that I value education very very highly and I do think it matters who your children go to school with and where they go to school. I see too much apathy in education and having been on both sides I do feel like shaking people! I get very frustrated at kids missing primary school as think it can be more important than high school in some ways. They will not catch up at high school. There are thousands of kids being failed by our education system in NZ (and by families too.).
I loved this second high school - i probably never caught up (having been above average at my earlier school and barely average at the 2 nd one.) but it opened my life to more opportunities and some great friends!
It is now a school of 2200 , still getting some of the highest results of any girls schools in NZ. A huge school with double and triple story buildings. And many memories.