School staff seeing double

Green Island School twins (from left, front row) Paige and Piper Martin (5); (second row) Lucy and Grace James (6); (third row) Cooper and Jayda Iosua (5); (fourth row) Te Kahurangi and Nukuroa McLean (10); (fifth row) Emma and Jessica Severins (11); and (sixth row) Thomas Stewardson (11) and Nathan Saunders (13). Absent: Hanna Stewardson and Jasmine Saunders. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery.
Green Island School twins (from left, front row) Paige and Piper Martin (5); (second row) Lucy and Grace James (6); (third row) Cooper and Jayda Iosua (5); (fourth row) Te Kahurangi and Nukuroa McLean (10); (fifth row) Emma and Jessica Severins (11); and (sixth row) Thomas Stewardson (11) and Nathan Saunders (13). Absent: Hanna Stewardson and Jasmine Saunders. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery.

Green Island School principal Steve Hayward reckons there is something in the water in Green Island.

The school has just enrolled its seventh set of twins, and another set of twins is due to start school in December.

''Whatever it is, we got a double shot of it,'' he said this week after enrolling the latest set of twins - Paige and Piper Martin.

Although the duo were nervous about their first day at school, the bonus was that they had each other, and six other sets of twins, for support.

Mr Hayward said about 7% of the school's roll was now twins.

''I've never seen this many twins in the one school in my 34-year-career.

''It really is quite extraordinary. It's all go here at the moment.''

Having so many sets of twins at the school meant double the delight most of the time but there were also times when it meant double the trouble - particularly with the identical twins, he said.

''Sometimes, they put the teacher on her toes by swapping seats. They think it's a great joke.

''When you're coaching a sports team, it's hard to know who you're yelling at.''

Eleven-year-olds Emma and Jessica Severins said being a twin had many benefits.

It meant there was always someone to help when it was time to clean up the bedroom, and there was always someone to take the blame when you did something wrong, they said.

Visiting relatives provided the most fun for them, though.

''When we visit our aunty, we swap our clothes,'' Emma said.

''She gets so confused.''

Mr Hayward said when twins first started school, it was often very difficult to tell them apart.

As they grew older, their personalities often changed and it was easier to identify who was who.

john.lewis@odt.co.nz

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