Hero photograph

From the Principal - Renee Hutchinson

Renee Hutchinson —

Ngā mihi nui kia koutou katoa. Nau mai Haere Mai! Warm Pacific Greetings to you all! We’ve had a fantastic start to the academic year at JPII and it was a great pleasure to welcome our new students this week!

Our focus for the year comes from the Marist pillar of Presence: caring for each other, seeking relationships founded on love, being attentive and welcoming with a sense of openness, living in the present, being the face of Christ to others. I am sure being up early was a shock to the system for some students this week, however they have done themselves proud with their great attitudes and positive start. They are truly living the pillar of Presence.

I would like to say a huge thank you to parents and whānau for trusting us with your children’s high school education. John Paul II is going from strength to strength with an increase of an additional 30 enrolments for 2022 – a 16% increase in student numbers overall. I am privileged to have the opportunity to lead this learning community, and I am supported by an outstanding leadership team and staff. In this newsletter you will find their contact details and meet the new Senior Leadership Team. We have also welcomed a strong team of administrators to support our mahi, and I thank them for their outstanding work this week. On behalf of the JPII staff, we look forward to serving our community and growing the good to make it great!

Much has been happening this week and I would like to highlight a few of the events that have made the start of the year so special for us.

Year 13 Leadership Camp at Boyle River

Our year 13 leaders took part in an intensive camp to grow their team bond and learn about different leadership approaches. The transformation in the team’s approach from the start to the end was great to see. You can read more about it from our leaders in this newsletter.

Year 9 Induction

We have 47 fantastic year 9 students with us this year. On Tuesday they worked with the Year 13 student mentors to learn the ropes at JPII. They have made their presence known in the most positive ways, found their way around (and to the canteen!), and have slotted into classes. It’s neat to hear our staff and senior students singing their praises already.

New staff onboarding

JPII is delighted to welcome the following staff members into our work whānau:

Madeline Campbell – Deputy Principal

Dan Steggles – Deputy Principal

Liz Manning – Finance Officer

Leah Smith – Reception & Student Services

Jenny Keogan – Pathways Advisor

We hope you enjoy your time with us at JPII and we thank you for sharing your considerable talents and expertise with us here!

Covid-19 Planning

The Senior Leadership is planning the approach to support teaching and learning should we need to adopt a hybrid learning approach. Using feedback from last year’s lockdown and best practice guidance from around the world, we will have this ready to communicate to the community shortly. I would like to acknowledge the cooperation of our students who have worn there masks at school, and thank them for playing their part in keeping the community safe.


There’s nothing like West Coast rain, and today is no exception! Please note that we made the decision to postpone the Powhiri this week due to the weather conditions. We will formally welcome our new staff and students next week when we can meet outside in the sun!

I wish you all a safe and happy Waitangi weekend and look forward to seeing you back next week.

Ngā mihi nui

Renée Hutchinson