From the Principal

August 9, 2023

Dear parents and caregivers, We have had a really positive start to Term 3, with a number of activities and events occurring in the first 3 to 4 weeks of the term. Last week we held our open day. We were really pleased with the number of students, parents and whaanau who attended during the day and evening sessions, despite the weather. Just a reminder that Year 9 in zone enrollments are due by 26 August which is the same date that Year 9 out of zone applications are due. If you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact the school.

With so much happening in the school, it is worth noting some of our key priorities:We must never lose sight of the fact that teaching and learning, and student achievement has always been and will continue to be our primary focus. The pressure is on our NCEA students as they continue with their internal assessments and learn content for their end of year NCEA examinations. At the end of last term we celebrated the success of our junior students in a special celebration assembly. We were thrilled with the support we received from parents and whaanau on this wonderful occasion.

We continue to work hard on attendance. Miria Radovanovich, our Student Engagement Officer, continues to work with families and whaanau in engaging our students to attend school on a regular basis. There is a clear relationship between attending school and achievement, and we need our parents’ and whaanau support in ensuring your children attend school on a regular basis.

Currently we are undertaking a uniform blitz. Mr Cox, one of our Deputy Principals is leading the charge as we identify and deal with those students wearing incorrect uniform. Again, we appreciate the support of our parents and whaanau in maintaining the school dress code.Staff continue to work in readiness for the new NCEA Level 1 standards which will be implemented at the beginning of next year.

Students are currently looking at their subject selections for next year. A course selection evening is scheduled for Thursday 24 August. This is an opportunity for parents and their children to talk to staff about next year’s subjects and courses. We require this information so we can begin the timetable process and also identify any staffing requirements for next year.

Finally another plea to our parents who pick up their children from school at the front of the school at the end of the day. When I am out on duty afterschool, I am dismayed at the lack of respect for our traffic rules and for the staff who try to ensure your children are safe when leaving the school. How we don’t have accidents, or worse still injury or fatalities I don’t know. I was a staff member at Hillcrest in the early 1980’s when a junior student was killed on the road outside the school at the end of the school day. I will never forget that incident. Mrs. Williams, our Associate Principal, has expanded on this topic in the newsletter. So, please respect our staff on duty, abide by the traffic rules, be patient, and arrange a safer place to pick up your child. I’m sure it won’t hurt them to walk to another location.

Ngaa mihi

Kelvin Whiting