Chatham farewells Merv Presland

Schools out: Merv Presland celebrates his retirement with the staff and teachers of Chatham High School.

Schools out: Merv Presland celebrates his retirement with the staff and teachers of Chatham High School.

CHATHAM High School held an emotional goodbye for its deputy principal of the last six years Merv Presland. 

Merv started his career in 1980 at James Ruse Agricultural High School in Carlingford before moving on to Shalvey High School in Mount Druitt.

Prior to taking on his first executive role in 2006, Merv was an agricultural teacher. 

Teachers and staff from Chatham High School stepped forward to share their heartfelt messages and funny stories about the departing deputy at an afternoon tea. 

Teacher Jennifer Fotheringham said: “Merv had done great things in the face of challenging circumstances”. 

She said Merv was always willing to step outside the box to make a difference and had great ideas on curriculum innovation.

Uncle Matt Mitchell (AEO) said Merv was always one to have a joke with the kids.

“I have nothing but love and respect for this man,” Matt added as he hugged Merv. 

Others remarked Merv was a “wise man” who maintained an “open door policy”. 

Merv delivered a speech to the crowd where he said he was “touched by heartfelt emotion” when hearing their kind words. 

“I’ve been blessed throughout my teaching career,” he said. 

“It has been a privilege and honour to be at Chatham High School.” 

Merv told the Times, with a broad smile on his face, he plans to become a seven day a week hobby farmer on his property. 

The group finished the celebration with a cake in the shape of a cow. 

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