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From The Principal May 5

Te Kura o Kirikiri Tatangi - Seatoun School —

In this Principal’s piece: Welcome to Term 2 and update on mask-wearing, Read-A-Thon, Secondary School Enrolment Deadlines, ICT User Agreement 2023, School Term Dates, COVID update for today

Kia ora and welcome to Term Two

The week has started calmly and students have quickly settled into their learning. At the Orange setting, we are able to re-introduce more elements into the school programme. Some examples of this change include our Year Five and Six students visiting the National Library and TePapa this week, school swimming programmes operating and the Cross Country happening, with parents invited to watch. For more detail about this term, refer to the Long Term Plans and Newsletters attached to this Newsletter. It is great to have a little bit more freedom. We also had our first outdoor assembly in quite some time, and it was wonderful to see the whole school together.

We are able to make these changes for many reasons including the confidence continued mask-wearing brings. Thank you for your cooperation with the request to continue to wear masks this week. I’ve had a lot of very positive feedback about this decision.

There were/are a number of factors that we consider/ed when making this decision. These included:
The feelings of staff and parents, knowing we have immunocompromised students, the developing situation of COVID-19 in our school community and nationwide, the opening up of borders and the number of school families that are either welcoming international visitors or taking international travel, upcoming school programmes and the ability to staff our school. 

Today, we have four active student cases in the school and three staff members self-isolating. We have found it very hard to find relievers for the staff this week!

In light of these considerations, we’ve decided to continue with the same mask-wearing requirements for the next four weeks (1st half of the Term). Last term, we demonstrated that we can manage wearing masks and because of all the efforts from both you and the school, we are keeping our community safe. This will mean that we will still require students to wear a mask, and thank you for supporting us. Staff will continue to ensure that children have lots of breaks from wearing masks. We will still ask parents to continue the same practices of wearing masks when coming to school and collecting children from the designated areas. We will review this at the end of week five of this term.

There is lots of excitement and conversation around our Read-A-Thon. Thank you for your support of this important fundraising event.  

Secondary School Enrolment Deadlines and Information
It is quickly approaching the time of the year when secondary schools require 2023 enrolments. If your child is in Year 8, or you are wanting to know more about potential secondary school options, please make contact with the school and review their website. We will not be publicising dates for all the secondary schools your child could enrol at.

REVISED and Updated ICT User Agreement will be coming home for you to discuss with your child/ren and sign
Over the next two weeks, we will be introducing and teaching your child about our new ICT User Agreement. In the last year, we have seen a large increase in the number of wearable devices coming to school and with children’s increased competence in using technology, an increase in children ‘pushing the boundaries’ and not following our expectations. This new agreement clearly outlines our expectations for learners and shares consequences for not following the agreement. I appreciate that this may not be universally welcomed by all our students, but it is in their best interests and we will be supporting children to understand that these expectations will be met.

We have a very strong focus on digital literacy education and dedicated lessons at each area of our school. Children do not need to bring a wearable device (such as an iWatch to school) and we ask that they stay at home.

End of Year Awards
While it seems quite a long time until the end of the year, it will arrive quickly and before we know it, we will be at our Final School Hui (Prize Giving). This is an important event in our school calendar where we both celebrate the year and at the same time, acknowledge achievers in academic, sporting, service and cultural areas.

As a school, we have extremely high academic standards and student results. In our next Steeple Rock, the Board will share our outstanding 2021 academic results.

2023 School Term Dates

Term 1: 7 Feb - 6 April
7th Feb - Meet The Teacher
24 March, Teacher Only Day (TOD) tbc
27 March - 3 Way Conferences - school operates differently

Term 2: 24 April - 30 June
2nd June Teacher Only Day (TOD) tbc
5 June - Queen's Birthday
6 June 3 Way Conferences - school operates differently today
Matariki Holiday - 14 July (in school holidays)

Term 3: 17 July - 22 September
18 August, potential TOD - to be confirmed 

Term 4: 9 October - 21 December
20 Oct Teacher Only Day (TOD) tbc
23 Oct Labour Day

We welcome your feedback!
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