Student speaker - Vaughan Smart

From the Principal - Term 4 Week 1

Seniors beware - time is flying! Rich learning and amazing students, plus a celebration of Rewi Alley in our community.

Tēnā tātou | hello to us all

Time seems to be in flight mode with a quick two week break and, after this week, only six days for seniors before study leave and exams start.

Congratulations to George House and MacKenzie Butler being confirmed as our Student Trustees on our Board. Their first meeting was this week and it is really valuable to have genuine student input to decisions. The meeting focused on reviewing and developing our strategic plan. We are happy with the progress we’ve made this year. Given the many pressures placed in education currently, we are looking at slightly slowing our pace of change to improve quality and try to make sure we don’t burn out our staff. We’re very much committed to building a positive learning culture and making the changes we need to see our vision taking place.

I was stunned by some Year 7 work this week. Two students, Margot Ferguson and Maggie Bull, showed me the book they’d written and illustrated for primary school students. It was a happy story about a giraffe, with beautiful pictures and great ‘flow’, and it showed an impressive level of creativity and skill. I love the commitment to their community and they will be taking it to a primary school to read to students later this term. Other students are also doing this project and it’s a good example of the curriculum developments happening at Year 7.

We have some incredible young people in our community. Jessica Lal in Year 10 was recently invited to Parliament as the Youth Ambassador for Rotuma, to receive the official Language Strategy for Rotuma. Talking with Jessica, I learnt that the Rotuma people are a distinct culture within Fiji, with their own language. Jess is an exemplary student and it is exciting to know that we have students with such mana within our school.

I spent Thursday afternoon with Chinese Consulate staff and some very distinguished guests hearing all about Rewi Alley, the Kiwi born in Springfield who spent 60 years in China following World War 2 and achieved incredible things in agriculture, industry and education. On Friday, student leaders from Springfield and DHS will join the Chinese Ambassador to NZ at the Rewi Alley memorial to celebrate his 125th anniversary and the 50th anniversary of our relationship with China. I was inspired by Rewi Alley’s dedication to serving underserved people, his passion for hard work and for valuing learning with our hands as much as with our minds. It is clear that his life has left a big impression on our world’s largest nation and raised the profile of Canterbury and it’s important that our students learn from his legacy.

Mauri ora ki a koutou,

Andy England

Dates this term

  • Last day for seniors: 1 Nov

  • Canterbury Anniversary: 11 Nov

  • Whānau Hui: Fri 18 Nov 5.30pm Kākāpōtahi

  • Staff only day: 25 Nov

  • Senior prizegiving: 1 Dec

  • Junior prizegiving and last day of term: 9 Dec

Student speaker - Trae Davis