As Worldwide School of English are celebrating 30 years of excellence this year, we take a look back...
Maureen Hayes and Cleve Brown are the owners and Directors of Worldwide. Maureen was first hired as a teacher in 1991 after coming to New Zealand from the USA and Cleve was hired as a teacher in 1992 after teaching English in Korea and Japan for several years.
In 1993/94 both Maureen and Cleve were promoted by the then owners to Director of Studies and Marketing Director. In 1996 they bought the school from the previous owners, changed its name slightly and moved to its next location at 8 Commerce St.
At that time Worldwide School had about 40-60 students. Not long after they bought they school, there were 2 major negative events. One was the 1997 Asian currency crisis and the 1998 Auckland power crisis. For a period, the number of students was in the 20’s and Cleve and Maureen, with a very small number of staff were full time teaching as well as doing their other roles (including cleaning the toilets!).
Through hard work, determination and some positive new relationships with overseas agents Worldwide School survived those events. Then from 1999 through to 2003 they saw massive growth as Worldwide School benefited from the low NZ$ and many new agency contacts all over the world. Student numbers peeked in 2002 at about 335 students.
Recognising the need for diversity Worldwide School marketed early in Europe, South America, French Polynesia and other Asian countries as well as more recently the Middle East. This along with their determination to offer quality and great experiences at reasonable prices saw the reputation of Worldwide School grow very quickly.
From 2003 with a rapidly increasing NZ$, a much larger and more onerous compliance regime established by the then Government as well as a massive increase in competition from newly opened schools saw student numbers drop a lot again. During those years, student numbers averaged at around 1000 students per year or around 150 students present at any week.
In February 2008 after 12 years at 8 Commerce St, Worldwide School moved to 233 Queen St, The Strand Arcade.
Then in 2014 Worldwide School moved to their current location. 80 Anzac Ave is a 6th floor building that Worldwide School shares with another private provider, Crown Institute. Moving to our lovely new premises marked the beginning of another period of growth, currently Worldwide School has at any one time between 190 -250 students and usually from 25-30 different nationalities.
If anyone from QE is in Auckland around late June - let us know so we can invite you to our 30th birthday party!