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Weilmoringle welcomes new principal

Principal Michael Mendes with Weilmoringle School students. PHOTO TWH

Chasing cows and brown snakes off school grounds, dealing with a pandemic, and seeing a clown fly into town – the new principal at Weilmoringle school, Michael Mendes, has had his fair share of new experiences.

Originally from Bathurst, Mr Mendes started out as a temporary teacher before making the move to Western NSW to find a more permanent position.

“I’ve worked at Burren Junction, Brewarrina Central and ended up going to Condobolin Public for a few years, and I got pretty comfortable there,” he said.

Michael found himself at an age where he decided he needed to pursue a more permanent option for his career.

“I suppose I turned 30 and I spoke to the deputy principal about a few things, because I can’t keep doing contracts year to year.

“I needed to lock in permanency,” he said.

Having worked at Brewarrina Central School, Mr Mendes was aware of Weilmoringle Public School and its good reputation.

Fortunately, a permanent position was advertised at the school.

His arrival at Weilmoringle in 2020 also coincided with the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I literally worked with the kids for one week, and then we were locked down,” Mr Mendes said.

Being a remote school, presents challenges outside of a pandemic. Weilmoringle struggled with a satellite NBN connection, which Mr Mendes says was shocking.

When remote learning was added into the mix, it became very difficult to keep distance learning going.

“It was a huge challenge with remote learning, trying to do online learning with no internet.

“We resorted to work packages, photocopying, and delivering work packs to the kids.

“So, that was the start of my teaching here at Weilmoringle,” he said.

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