Mrs Sabina Aue Fakanaiki NPSM and Mrs Janet Sipeli Tasmania NPSM were awarded the Niue Public service Medal recognised for their contribution to the education sector and Niue.
Mrs Aue Fakanaiki began her career as a teacher trainee at the Niue Teachers Training Centre in 1965 when she was only 16 in a career as an educated that spanned more than 4 decades. She assisted in the national effort to amalgamate the primary schools into one Niue primary school when she was the Acting Principal of Tuatea Primary school.
Mrs Fakanaiki is also an active member of the Hakupu village community in her various roles in the Ekalesia Niue’s Federation of Christian Women.
Affectionately known to many as ‘Nena Pina’ she is also a lay preacher and long-serving Sunday school teacher. She continues to share her knowledge and skills today as a daycare teacher for the village preschool.
Former Director of Education Mrs Janet Sipeli-Tasmania was visibly emotional as she accepted her medal from Premier Dalton Tagelagi repeatedly saying “I loved teaching”.
In a career that spans over 40 years, Mrs Janet Sipeli-Tasmania began work as a teacher at Halavai Primary in 1977, after completing formal training at the Palmerston North Teachers College.
Mrs Tasmania’s commitment and dedication to her chosen profession saw her progress from the classroom of a village school to eventually becoming the Director of Education.
Her career path took her from the village classroom at Halavai, to the Side School and then to the principal of the Niue Primary. She was appointed Director of Education in 2010. During her career, she acquired a Bachelor of Education. Mrs Tasmania retired from the public service in 2013.
The two ladies were supported on the day by their families and friends from the village of Hakupu.