Amesbury School

Tēnā koutou e hoa ma,

I hope you have managed to get out and enjoy some of the glorious sunshine over the weekend. It has been good to see work on the new hub building gain momentum again after our level 4 lockdown. The construction crew have a steady audience of tamariki watching their progress from the handy platform of the chess seating storage. This audience swells considerably when diggers are in action! Many of you will have noticed the new hill appearing on our far field, using some of the soil being removed from the construction site. This work will continue for another week or so. Some soil will also be kept in a roped off area on the field until the construction is finished, to keep soil for use at the end of the project once we return the grounds to their original state.

Staffing update

We currently have several staff on leave:

- Zoe Jiang unfortunately suffered a concussion shortly before lockdown, after being accidentally knocked to the ground whilst shopping. Zoe is recovering well, and is feeling much better. She will remain on leave until the end of this term to ensure she makes a full recovery. Zoe’s whānau group will remain with heir temporary whānau teachers in Harakeke Hub until the end of term.

- Rachel Watson is currently on leave to support her daughter in her recovery from a recent health issue. Rachel will remain on extended leave until the end of this school year, and is looking to return to school for the 2022 school year. Rachel pops into school from time to time to say hello and keep in touch, which is always nice. Jenny and Caro will continue to cover Rachel’s role in reception services until the end of the year. They are doing a fabulous job and we love having them as part of the admin team. Jenny is based in reception in the mornings on Monday - Thursday, and Caro works in the afternoons and on Fridays.

Sadly Elena Taylor, in Koru Hub, will be leaving Amesbury School and Wellington at the end of this year. We have loved working and learning with Elena over the past year, and she is a very valued member of our team. Elena came to us from Spain, and although she has very much enjoyed her time at Amesbury, she has struggled with the weather differences between Spain and Wellington! She is looking to move either to Hawke’s Bay or Nelson, where the weather may be kinder to her. We are currently making several appointments for next year, to replace Michelle Prinsloo and Elena, and we will let you know about these once they have been confirmed.

Safety concerns

With the combination of increased traffic in the car park from construction work and our wintry weather, we are experiencing some unsafe conditions for our tamariki in the car park area. We have noticed a number of unsafe parking and driving incidents recently, and late last week we had a very near miss when a young child tried to cross the car park following an adult. They walked behind a reversing car, which thankfully managed to stop in time due to the reaction from another passer-by. In order to keep all of our tamariki safe, we are asking all whānau and caregivers to follow the expectations of our car park area. They may seem a bit pedantic, and at times it may feel frustrating or take a little longer to follow the rules, but we all want the same thing - for all tamariki to be safe coming to school. As such, we are asking all people on school grounds to:

- Only park or wait in marked parking bays, even if you are waiting temporarily for your child to come to the drop off zone. Double parking and parking on yellow lines makes it very hard for small children to cross the car park safely.

- Walk your child/ren across the walkway through the car park. Please do not walk across the driveway or road through the car park. While we appreciate that it may be safe and appropriate for an adult to do this, for children who are much smaller and therefore harder to see, and have less ability to make good judgements about the distance and speed of cars, it is very dangerous for them to do this. Our tamariki copy what we do, so please model using the walkway as a safe route to cross.

- Keep to the 5 km per hour speed limit. Children can sometimes move or appear unexpectedly. Driving very slowly allows for sufficient reaction time to respond safely to unexpected events.

Thank you for following these expectations and keeping our tamariki safe.

It has been confirmed that the upcoming school holidays will remain the same across New Zealand. This means we have two more weeks of school, and the last day of Term 3 is on Friday 1st October. Here are some events coming up in the final two weeks of term:

Board of Trustees meeting - Wednesday 22nd September in the school commons (staff room).

Online connection conferences Wed 29th and Thurs 30th September. See the link to the article on how to book a conference in this HERO post.

Wear your onesie or pyjamas to school FUNdraising day: Friday 1st October (last day of Term 3). Fundraising for Wellington Free Ambulance - bring a gold coin donation.

Final day of Term 3 - Friday 1st October

Kia pai tō wiki - have a good week.

Ngā mihi, 

Urs Cunningham

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