New intake of 20 to move into Hato Petera hostel, Whakaruruhau

By Tema Hemi

A Hato Petera old boy is hoping his new programme will attract students from around the country who want to attend schools in the Auckland region. The Hato Petera Leadership Academy is the brainchild of Dr Lance O'Sullivan, it's an initiative that will see students board at the now vacant Hato Petera building, Whakaruruhau. 

What was almost lost has now found a new purpose.  Today the first in-take of 20 students from various Northland schools came face-to-face with the people helping to realise their dreams.

The hostel is set to re-open in February 2019 and despite the excitement, the partnerships between interested parties and stakeholders could be the divine intervention that could make "this" work.

Some of the new intake for the Hato Petera Leadership Academy - Photo / File

Founder of the Moko Foundation, Dr O'Sullivan says, "It's great the boys have come here, they've been exposed to what has been a promise of coming to Auckland, getting a world-class education and being supported in an environment like what we're wanting to establish that will allow them to be awesome. Hato Petera has traditionally been a Māori Catholic educational facility so we're looking for boys who can align to those values."

Michael Butler of the Catholic Diocese says, "We're excited about the opportunity, there's still a lot of work to be done but there's certainly a grand opportunity here."

A former principal of Hato Petera Sir Toby Curtis says, "The thoughts of those elders of that time who supported the establishment of the school was that this school was to educate Māori children. From that time to now it still upholds that purpose."

The Hato Petera Leadership Academy is the brainchild of Dr Lance O'Sullivan - Photo / File