Teacher finds his groove

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Morgan Platt enjoys a strum on his guitar during the lunch break at Rakaia School.

Morgan Platt has spent most of his teaching life overseas, where he was also a professional musician, but he’s chosen Rakaia as the place to further his career and to bring up his family.

He is the deputy principal at Rakaia School and has embraced school and community life since starting in the role almost a year ago.

The expat spent 15 years in the London area as a primary school teacher by day and a professional drummer at night.

He spent a further three years in Dubai, before deciding to return to his homeland with his South African-born wife.

He now has two children aged under two and the family is living temporarily in the Rakaia School house, a stone’s throw away from his workplace.

Morgan said life in Rakaia was a world away from his previous existence overseas and he was thoroughly enjoying it both professionally and personally.

“Life in London was good at the time. I was teaching during the day and playing drums on the side at night and during the holidays, including at festivals and different venues.

“Dubai was a different experience again and also enjoyable while it lasted.”

Morgan lived in Christchurch in his late teens, so knew where Rakaia was when he answered a teaching job advertisement last year.

He is part of the school’s senior leadership team and, in effect, a principal-in-training.

As well as playing drums, he is also useful on bass, guitar and keyboard and is sharing his music skills and enthusiasm with pupils.

Morgan’s already played a couple of gigs with other local musicians at the Rakaia Tavern and more are planned.

“Raising my family in a great place like Rakaia is a no-brainer for me. We’re building a house in a new subdivision near the domain and couldn’t be happier being part of this community.”

Rakaia School principal Mark Ellis said Morgan was proving a valuable find, a real asset to the school and was “making a difference”.