Kia ora families, what a crazy term it’s been! It’s hard to believe it has been two years since the world changed due to the arrival of the Covid-19 Pandemic and here we are still working hard to find a sense of normality in daily life. Our attendance has fluctuated a lot over the last few weeks and I’m hugely thankful to our staff who have been so flexible and covered where needed, especially as I was away and of course to our resilient students who just rolled with it all and stepped up manning phones and taking on responsibilities. Hopefully we will see things starting to settle, as the seasons change there does tend to be a few coughs and sniffles so reinforcing personal hygiene with your child is really important, especially before eating.
Our annual Beach Day was awesome! We got to find out more amazing information about the geological history of the coastal area, studied the rockpools and made the annual trek upto the lighthouse. It was great to have so many parents along, we love having you come on our trips, also thanks to our GNS Science friends Tony and Chris, their wealth of information and ability to put it into ‘Kidspeak’ is fantastic and is hugely important as part of our local curriculum. One of the best of the day for me was the fossil hunting, we founds heaps which are on display in the main hallway at school, we even managed to find some mud to slide in……….
Recently, our Covid Response Plan was sent out on Skool Loop detailing our response in certain scenarios. We are currently at Stage 2 of that plan which is known as ‘Hybrid Learning’. All classes have online programmes and resources that students are able to complete from home, unless they are actually afflicted with or recovering from the virus. We have to accept that this is most likely going to be something we have to adapt to, the Ministry of Education is funding 25 hours of Professional Learning to all schools to go towards utilising online resources to assist with learning from home. This indicates that we are expecting regular learning disruptions for some time yet. We are concerned that unless we adapt quickly, achievement levels could drop which is understandable however, not something we should be prepared to accept. Online learning has been around for several years, some institutes around the world only do online classes and as resources are designed and tweaked are a very good alternative. Many curriculum areas are ‘Gamified’ turning learning into interactive games that are of high interest as one example. There is no one-size approach to learning, there still needs to be reading, writing, thinking and of course, a degree of peer interaction. We do have a range of resources at our disposal, please see your child’s teacher if you like to know more or are unsure how to access our online learning programmes. Please let us know if your child or family member tests positive at any stage, it can be confusing in terms of when can you return after isolating, please check the Covid-19 Website for further information or call Healthline if unsure. We now have Rapid Antigen Tests at school, if you need any please contact the office and we will get them to you.
I would like to welcome Skylah, Twan and Ghia to our school, it’s awesome to have you and your whanau with us! Our school roll is currently at 50 pupils.
Big Happy Birthdays to these students:
MJ, Heidi, Jackson, Harlow, Athena and Skye.
On Wednesday 13th of April we are having our Enviroschools Cleanup, this will be from 1.30 to 2.55 to prepare for Winter. Among the students regular enviro-groups are a few jobs that we would love to deal to including splitting the wood from the gum tree, mulching branches from pruning, pruning trees in the car park behind Room 2, waterblasting to name a few. We would love to have as many people join us as possible, if someone has access to a splitter and mulcher and able to operate these for us, that would be magnificent.
We are in the process of advertising for our new principal, during term 2, Miss Lagah will be stepping into the role and we will be hiring staff to work in Room 1 and 3 one day per week to allow her to get things done. We will keep you informed along the way.
Our Reading Challenge is humming along, students have really hooked in and this has given everyone the opportunity to get stuck into books, we are dicovering new authors all the time and it is very clear the students at Pirinoa School love reading! In May, our school will be taking part in Book Town events, each student will be given $15 worth of vouchers to spend, a bus will be running on festival weekend 6-8 May to take families in. This will be Free of Charge on the day. More information coming soon!
On the last day of term (Thursday 14th April) we are having a mufti Day to raise stocks for the Featherston Food Bank who are desperately short of supplies. We ask that instead of a gold coin, each student brings along a non-perishable food item to donate.
Pool Keys: Can families please return their keys to school and claim your $10 rebate, thank you for supporting us by hiring the keys, it contributes towards the running costs of the pool. Keys can be returned to the office.
On our enviroschools cleanup day we will be judging the pumpkin competition, up for graps is a $50 voucher for the Food caravan! Good luck!
On Monday and Tuesday we will be holding or Term 1 interviews, if you have not made a time please do this on the Skoolloop app under the interview tab. We are happy to meet face to face, zoom or over the phone, which ever way suits you we will need to book in a time slot on one of those days. Please stipulate the format that suits you, each interview is a 15 minute slot.
Have a great week, noho ora mai
Room 1 News
In Room 1 we have been flat out like lizards drinking! Along with the beach trip we have been working hard on learning about statistics and surveys and learning about tally marks. We have also been learning about keeping healthy by eating a good balanced lunch and making sure we have a good balanced mix of rest and activities.
Room 2 News
This week we went on our school beach trip. We had so much fun exploring the rockpools. We found some amazing creatures, and we can’t wait to learn more about them in class over the next few weeks.
Room 3 News
Room 3 have been studying New Zealand Artist Sarah Platt. She travels around the country painting cityscapes and landscapes in incredible detail. After looking into her work, we had a go at creating our own cityscape or landscape. Then, we learnt how to use watercolour paints and had a go at painting our art. They’ve turned out beautifully! We’re very pleased with our work.
Does BEING ON THE BOARD mean you hire the staff?
NO. The Board only hires the Principal. The Board then delegates to the Principal the hiring of everyone else – whether they’re a teacher or a caretaker! All school staff answer to the Principal; only the Principal answers to the Board.
Hiring a Principal is the hardest thing you’ll do as a board member. While some board members may never experience it, our current board will have hired 2 principals in their 3 year term – quite astonishing & fairly rare I’d imagine!!
As you know we’re looking for a new principal. We’re advertising for a Permanent Principal, starting term 3 (25 July). Keep an eye out for the ad on social media and please share it far and wide. We hope to have chosen a great candidate for the permanent position by the end of May, so that there’s plenty of time to let everyone know.
Nominations for the upcoming board elections open mid-July & close 5 August. So if you’re considering BEING ON THE BOARD, you’ll have a bit of time to get to know the new principal before nominations close.