After more then 40 years in the teaching profession, Sid G Rule principal Priscilla Ann Stadler, 62, is handing over the reins.
Ms Stadler started her practice teaching at the school 44 years ago and hasn’t looked back since – becoming a head of department (HOD) in her later years, acting principal in 2006 and then permanent principal in 2008.
Asked about the first few years of the school’s existence and how things were back in the day, Ms Stadler said there were many struggles: “It was not a very affluent school. There were many poor children and there was lots of poverty around. We had to first feed many of the children, clean them up and then we could teach – but it was a beautiful community that really supported us teachers at the school,” she said.
Now, almost half a century later, the Simon’s Town resident is looking forward to taking time off to relax a bit more but she won’t cut all ties with the school just yet.
“I’m very sad because I’m leaving my family and a beautiful school community. That’s why I can’t completely let go. I will still be coming into the school because I will be taking an advising role in the school governing body (SGB) and I will help out wherever I am needed,” she said.
Ms Stadler is also excited to take up sewing and painting and will also be giving a bit more of her time to the Full Gospel church in Fish Hoek.
One of her greatest achievements in her time as leader is getting the school into the top 10 in the district for academic excellence.
“We have achieved a lot and I think we have done exceptionally well as a school with the help of great teachers, a wonderful SGB and support from parents.
“I’m in the business of growing children and we’re doing that well too because the pupils are showing great strides even after leaving Sid G Rule. We track our pupils and even in high school they are performing well,” said Ms Stadler.
“I couldn’t have done much without my team of teachers. I have a hardworking group of teachers. They’ve all bought into this vision with me – the vision to set high goals and give the pupils the best that we can give,” she said.
Anton Yon, who has been working with Ms Stadler for 27 years, and who will be stepping in as acting principal, said she will be greatly missed.
“We have drawn a lot of knowledge from her and even though she will still be here to give us guidance, she will be missed. I have personally learnt a lot from her and I will take that to help me be as good a leader as she is,” said Mr Yon.
Ms Stadler thanked the teachers, pupils, parents, SGB and everyone who has played a role in the development and enrichment of the school.
She also thanked her husband, Clive, who has stuck by her throughout it all.