Dianella: Banksia Montessori school honours former principal


Mt Lawley MLA Simon Millman and former principal Emelinda Stephen.

Banksia Montessori School students performing for the guests.

Police Pipe Band.

Principal Fleur Van Butzelaar with students Jada Gaudet, Ugo Vittino, Korben Masilamani and Alexia D-ercole.
Mt Lawley MLA Simon Millman and former principal Emelinda Stephen. Banksia Montessori School students performing for the guests. Police Pipe Band. Principal Fleur Van Butzelaar with students Jada Gaudet, Ugo Vittino, Korben Masilamani and Alexia D-ercole.

BANKSIA Montessori School in Dianella honoured its former principal of 22 years with the launch of a new building and nature-based playground last week.

The school also celebrated its 20th anniversary since moving to Dianella from its original home in Yokine, which opened in 1982.

The new building, which housed administration and a staff room, was named after former principal Emelinda Stephen.

Current principal Fleur Van Butzelaar paid tribute to her predecessor at the event attended by about 60 guests including parents, school board chairwoman Linh Hoang Vu, Association of Independent Schools of WA early childhood co-ordinator Wendy Gorman, Mt Lawley MLA Simon Millman and City of Stirling councillor Terry Tyzack.

Guests were treated to performances by the Police Pipe Band and students before Mrs Stephen and Mr Millman took part in an inauguration ceremony for the building.

Mrs Stephen said the school was like her “second home” and she did not expect to have a building named after her.

Ms Van Butzelaar said Mrs Stephen worked hard with parent communities to fundraise for improvements to the school.

Mr Millman acknowledged the parent community and school for creating a program for students to be cultivated in a non-competitive environment.

“I think it is a testament to the school community that they have been able to achieve such a wonderful balance between a built environment and a natural environment,” Mr Millman said.

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