Reflection: Assignment One

My roles in Assignment One: I filmed most of the footage- all of the interview footage, and several extra shots. I also did a lot of editing. While Jess and I helped to edit the piece together, on Thursday, I grasped a better knowledge of the program, so she worked on the script, while I edited.

This assignment was a challenge, but a good one. Right from the start, I had a few issues with my pitch- it was too much of a PR story. However after I talked to the person I wanted to interview, I was able to see a different angle, one that focused less on the ‘event’, and more on his personal story.

In the end, that interview fell through because he was performing in Tauranga, and wasn’t back in time to film.

We decided to go with Jess’s idea of Public Transport issues- because this has the news values of timeliness, relevance and continuity. It always seems like something is wrong with public transport.

When it came to filming, we were very lucky. It had been raining a few hours before we filmed, but the sun came out, just for us.

Personally, I felt a little under prepared for the filming aspect of this interview. I am a visual person, so I need to see what I have to film. In the next assessment, I will make a story board of all the shots that we need, so that when it comes to the editing process it is a lot easier.

I filmed this interview, while Jess was the reporter.

We filmed some cutaways first, with several shots of buses, and transport in Auckland city. We were able to get some good shots of people hopping off the buses.

The interview was good. Claudine was very natural and spoke quite well. One mistake we did make however, was not using the lapel mics. This would have boosted the sound for our interview and made it clearer to understand.

When it came to editing, we did a crash course in refreshing ourselves with the programme! We realised that we did not have a lot of shots, so this was a bit disappointing as it meant several of the shots and cuts were quite repetitive.

Not having enough shots (and a big enough range of shots) was probably the biggest issue in this assignment, but I think we did really well with what we had. I definitely have things that I would do differently next time- simply because I am now reminded in what is involved in the interviewing and editing process.

I am happy with how we handled the pressures involved in this assignment (this was mostly dealing with temperamental computers and semi-foreign computer programmes). Personally, I am pleased with how I was able to use Premier Pro CC again.

While I feel like the assignment is not near perfect, I am happy with what we produced and feel a lot more confident about what can be produced in the next assignment.

The Boys Are Back

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Caption: The original building from 1930 is now needing desperate repair.

St Stephen’s boarding school for boys’, is looking to reopen its doors after being closed for over a decade.

Te Mano o Tipene, or the St Stephen’s Old Boys’ Association, have been discussing plans to reopen the school after it was closed in the year 2000, due to high debts, poor achievement and chronic bullying.

Secretary of the old boys’ association, Dean Kidd says “we don’t want to open the school simply because we’re all old boys’, but that is a driving factor.”

A submission has been put forward to the Ministry of Education, in which they aim to have the school open by February 2016. However, the site of the school in Bombay has suffered greatly after its closure 13 years ago, being the target of vandals, as well as being used by the police, fire services and the army, in training exercises in which the empty buildings were used to practice urban warfare. This has resulted in the deterioration and rapid dilapidation of the old structures.

For this reason, there is some trepidation as to whether the school will be opened at the Bombay site, or at an alternative site which is owned by the St Stephen’s and Queen Victoria School’s Trust Board.

Mr Kidd says “Ideally the Bombay site is preferred, but it is up to engineering experts to decide, because of the state of the buildings”. There is another option if the buildings are semi salvageable, to keep the front and rebuild the back ends, keeping the beautiful and iconic structures.

As the assets are owned by the Board whose views are Anglican, the school will retain it’s religious values. But the old boy’s association is looking for other partners too, with the likes of computer companies, Apple and Microsoft.

With this potential support, they wish to offer alternative educational opportunities, which will follow the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) system, but will be different to the structure of public schools, described by Mr Kidd as being, “totally different, fun and cool,” with the emphasis centered on each student being responsible for their own learning.

Mr Kidd said that St Stephen’s will be completely different to every other Maori Boys’ school in New Zealand, being more innovative, and a place where people of all races will want to send their boys.

Originally opening in 1844, and moving to the Bombay site in 1930, St Stephen’s is one of the oldest schools in New Zealand, boasting an impressive and loyal history. The plaque mounted high on the office building of the school states that it is ‘a school for religious education, industrial training and instruction in the English language for the children of both races in New Zealand and the islands of the Pacific.’

In past years, students have come from all over the country. With the reopening, it is expected that this will not change.

Mr Kidd says there is still more to be planned before the grand opening, with policies to be passed, teachers and staff to be chosen and students to be recruited.

There will be high emphasis on academic study, as well as sport. St Stephen’s is proud of its past rugby achievements, in which they dominated New Zealand secondary schools rugby for over 70 years.

The school has also helped shape the lives of prominent Maori men, such as Shane Jones and Hone Harawira, who remember the camaraderie that they had at the school.

Mr Kidd says, “St Stephen’s has been a pillar in many people’s lives, and we would love to see it opened to the community again.”

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Caption: Outer building showing signs of the aftermath of army training

More photos

Decided to post some more photos. If you haven’t seen this post, then click it to see some more pictures of St Stephen’s. And if you haven’t looked at this video, from an Ex-Student of the school, then that too has some awesome clips of the school, as well as some history. 

But for now, enjoy these photos! 

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These photos show that this site contains many beautiful and iconic buildings that have unfortunately not been looked after well enough and so over time they have been deteriorating, resulting in broken windows, broken gutters and general dilapidation. 

If the school were to reopen, the committee want to keep the iconic buildings, as you would think, but will it be too much work, and too much money to repair?

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On The Twitter

One of the criteria for this blog assessment requires us to promote our blog via social media. I’ve used the sites handy to me, twitter being the main one, and facebook as well to help me get some comments, and get my idea out there.

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Of course, it needed a bit of persistence, but it eventually paid off.
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Don’t forget to follow, if you’re not already: yanaogorman

A Little Bit Of History

This video is really cool. It shows photos of St Stephen’s school, and then explains what they are, from a student who used to attend. Judging by the music and the tone of the text within the video, I think they’re quite upset at the way the school has been left. This clearly reinforces the idea that this school means a lot to many people and they can’t wait for it to be reopened so that it can again hold significance in the lives of others.

Trespassing With Care

I took a nice stroll the other day to the end of my road, and then further down to St Stephen’s. Naturally I took my Mum with me, because that place, abandoned and deteriorating, kinda creeps me out a little. That and the fact that I was trespassing… but ssh!

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The building doesn’t look too bad from a distance, but as you get closer it’s easy to see that a lot of work will need to be done if they are going to refurbish it. And this is only one of many.

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Signs like this are placed all over the site, to prevent people from entering, but most of the buildings are all boarded up, and the doors blocked anyway.

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Here you can see some of the damage that has been done to the buildings over time- just cracks in the walls, broken windows and broken gutters. As you may have noticed in the top photo, most of the grounds, (well the lawns) have been mowed, so they must organise that to be done, or just have a caretaker. In the photo below, the circle out the front of the main school building can be seen. This is sacred ground and probably explains why the grounds are still looked after, even though the school hasn’t been used for 13 years.

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Hope these photos give you a little insight into the size of the project ahead if they choose to open the school in that same location. More photos and a video coming soon!