Aidan Smith Farewell - St Andrew's College

Aidan Smith Farewell

K-Day Debating
June 21, 2023
Art Exhibition
July 3, 2023
K-Day Debating
June 21, 2023
Art Exhibition
July 3, 2023

Aidan Smith Farewell

On 21 June 2023 St Andrew’s College had to say farewell to one of its most beloved teachers. Mr Aidan Smith served our school for 23 years and it was only fitting to take a trip down memory lane through songs from the various musicals that he directed (See programme items below). Pupils and staff put together a beautiful programme weaved into Sinjhun Cawse’s now famous story of The Runaway Teacher, which was also presented to Mr Smith as a gift, exquisitely illustrated by Daniel Bradfield. Mr Smith responded with one last gift to us in reading from Virginia Woolf’s The Waves, leaving us with images of a magnificent sunrise. As we bid this great man farewell, Aidan, may you say of every sunrise that “an arc of fire burnt on the rim of the horizon, and all round it the sea blazed gold”.

 Programme:

String quartet ending in ‘Auld Lange Syne’ (from Oh, what a lovely war) – Duncan Samson

‘Somewhere’ (there’s a place for us) from West Side Story – Kepa (Chamber Choir)

‘Grow for me’ from Little Shop of Horrors (Maretha; Johan Pretorius with backtrack) – James Barrow

‘Everything’s alright’ from Jesus Christ Superstar – Rich Wyngaard & Maretha Potgieter

‘Learn your lessons well’ from Godspell – Des Alcock

‘If I were a rich man’ from Fiddler on the roof: tuba – Gcobani Ndadana (Johan Pretorius, acc. Salomie Rocher)

‘Remember me’ from Dido and Aeneas – John Marshall (recording)

 

The Runaway Teacher

Once there was a teacher who wanted to run away and retire, so he said to his school, “I am going to retire.” The school replied, “If you try to retire, we will run after you, for you are family.” “If you run after me,” said the teacher, “I will hide at the back of the staff room, doodling and causing trouble.”

“If you hide in the back of the staff room,” the school said. “We will have a situation that forces you to stop doodling and lead the staff meetings as our new headmaster.” “If you make me your headmaster,” said the teacher. “I will have a heart attack so I can finally retire and live stress-free, for I do not have any ambitions to be a headmaster.”

“If you have a heart attack, the school will provide you with the best medical care because many of our students’ parents are doctors.” “If you help me become healthy and strong again,” said the teacher, “I will use that strength to run into my home, the physics classroom.” “If you run into your home,” said the school, “we will become your family again and open up a classroom for you to teach in.” “Shucks,” said the teacher, “I might as well stay here as part of your family and doodle in the back of the staff room.” “Finally, closing my fourth circle by being a physics teacher, but only a physics teacher!” And so he did.

Sinjhun Cawse
Head of School

The Runaway Teacher

Once there was a teacher who wanted to run away and retire, so he said to his school, “I am going to retire.” The school replied, “If you try to retire, we will run after you, for you are family.” “If you run after me,” said the teacher, “I will hide at the back of the staff room, doodling and causing trouble.”

“If you hide in the back of the staff room,” the school said. “We will have a situation that forces you to stop doodling and lead the staff meetings as our new headmaster.” “If you make me your headmaster,” said the teacher. “I will have a heart attack so I can finally retire and live stress-free, for I do not have any ambitions to be a headmaster.”

“If you have a heart attack, the school will provide you with the best medical care because many of our students’ parents are doctors.” “If you help me become healthy and strong again,” said the teacher, “I will use that strength to run into my home, the physics classroom.” “If you run into your home,” said the school, “we will become your family again and open up a classroom for you to teach in.” “Shucks,” said the teacher, “I might as well stay here as part of your family and doodle in the back of the staff room.” “Finally, closing my fourth circle by being a physics teacher, but only a physics teacher!” And so he did.

Sinjhun Cawse
Head of School

Special Assembly
A Special Assembly was held just before the start of half term begun to acknowledge the significant contribution of Mr Aidan Smith to College over the past 23 years. Mr Smith has impacted College’s history through his influence in the prominent positions that he held, but also behind the scenes in the way that he has shaped and affected so many aspects of the school through his humanity and deep care.
The Headmaster, Mr Tom Hamilton, and the Chairman of Council, Mr Jacko Maree, both thanked Mr Smith for his exemplary service and his example of humility, professionalism and dedication. Mr Smith left the boys with a challenge to get to know the rich history and stories of the special school where they spend their formative years. He cited many examples of positive change over his tenure such as the transition of the Graham House change rooms to the Thomas Mapikela Debating Chamber and the Academic Excellence improvement of the classroom blocks, to name just two.
The boys acknowledged this great schoolmaster with lengthy and deafening applause and a standing ovation, before forming a guard of honour to lead him out of the hall, all the way to Norton Common Room.
A new plaque was unveiled in the Norton Common Room acknowledging the role that Mr Aidan Smith played as Interim Headmaster in 2022. After the blessing of the plaque, colleagues raised a toast to a much-loved and respected schoolmaster and friend who served his beloved College well last year.

Unveiling of the Plaque

After a Special Assembly of farewell, a new plaque was unveiled in the Norton Common Room acknowledging the role that Mr Aidan Smith played as Interim Headmaster in 2022. After the blessing of the plaque, colleagues raised a toast to a much-loved and respected schoolmaster and friend who served his beloved College well last year.