Newsletter No 11,12 April 2017

Kia Ora,

Hello Everyone,

Last Sunday we celebrated Palm Sunday. At this time we commemorate the triumphal entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem, when palm branches were placed in His path, before His arrest on Holy Thursday and His Crucifixion on Good Friday. It marks the beginning of Holy Week in which Christians celebrate the mystery of salvation through Christ’s Death and Resurrection on Easter Sunday. Every year during this sacred week, the Church invites us to consider once again, the meaning of the Cross. With each passing year we bring our own considerations, understandings and acceptance of our faith, as they have developed since the previous year.

On Friday we had our Palm Sunday Liturgy and procession. It was a wonderful liturgy, and I am sure the donkey in our procession was a highlight for most children.

Last week our children participated in the Stations of the Cross Liturgy where our children reflected on the final hours in the life of Jesus on Earth. Tomorrow we have the Washing of the Feet Liturgy at 10am in the School Hall. Jesus washed the feet of his disciples prior to the Last Supper and this has significance in that it was a display of humility and His servanthood. I have been very impressed with the way our children have led and been involved in our liturgies. Thank you children and thanks to our teachers who have been organising these special liturgies.

There are several Liturgies and Masses in our parish over Easter and I invite you and your family to attend these. Times are included later in this newsletter.

This week we farewell Margot Nielson. Margot moves to Otonga School as their Deputy Principal. Margot has made a huge contribution to our school as she has a huge breadth of experience, knowledge and expertise. Margot has been a team leader, a member of our Maths Curriculum team and she also set up our school band and wow, they have come a long way since they first started. She has been a huge asset to our school with her many talents and she will be missed. We all wish you well, Margot, in your new job as DP. Otonga School is very fortunate.

Athlene Wallbank who has been at our school since the beginning of the year becomes the Middle School team leader.

Katherine Brolly has been appointed to teach in Room 14. Katherine began teaching at St Mary’s in Putaruru for a couple of years and she also has had a stint of teaching in London schools. Katherine is also a talented piano player. I am sure you will make her feel very welcome.

In the middle of Term 2 we will also be farewelling Brigit Nieuwboer who is currently Team Leader of our Senior School. Brigit has accepted a position at Mokoia Intermediate. We are in the process of appointing a teacher to replace Brigit in Room 3.

Reading Logs for the Holiday Reading Programme have been issued to the children today. Children were issued with a pack and in the pack is the Town Library Log which carries on through the year and our Holiday Log. When children take their completed Town Library logs back to the library they may get a spot prize. Children will be issued with another log each time they drop off their completed log to the issue desk at the Town Library. Please also fill in our Holiday Reading Logs too. They need to be brought back to school by May 10th so as children can be in the lucky draw.

This final week of term has been busy with Big Days Out for our Year 1 classes. The children had an awesome time over at Mount Maunganui. Thanks to parents for your support with this.

On Monday and Tuesday of this week we have had our three way conferences. Thank you for supporting these. I am sure our children are all set up with their goals for Term 2.

Tomorrow we are having a mufti day for the families from Edgecumbe. All the Catholic Schools in the Hamilton Diocese are helping in some way. There are a number of families at St Joseph’s Whakatane and Matata that are affected. I am aware that we had a mufti day last week, so sorry to call on you again for a donation.

During the holidays we celebrate ANZAC Day. I am hoping to have a strong representation from our school attending the parade. If your child would like to join us and walk in the parade and participate in the Civic Ceremony please make sure they are at the Lakefront Memorial (intersection of Fenton St and Whakaue Streets) by 8.40am in their winter school uniform. Jersey, not fleece top. The ceremony should be over by 11.00am Parents are also invited to be part of the parade and service. If you have a poppy your child can wear, please pin it on them. I will have some spare ones to give to children at the parade. This is a very special ceremony so I do encourage our children to be part of this. ALL STUDENTS ARE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE.

At the start of Term 2 children must be in winter uniform. Uniforms can be bought from our uniform shop. The shop is open today (Wednesday) at 2.30pm, and on Monday, the first day back in Term 2, at 8.30pm. I want to make sure our students are wearing the correct uniform in Term 2, so I will contact you if your child is not in the correct winter uniform. At this point I would also like to mention that our Lost Property was *overflowing* with items left around the school yard by students. Lost property is now on display in the back of the hall - maybe worth a visit before the term ends!

As the term draws to an end I want to thank all our staff for their hard work over the term. I would also like to thank our community for all your support over this time. We are fortunate to have so many of you willing to help in so many different ways. I want to thank particularly those who turned up to our working bee last Saturday. We actually got a number of jobs completed: playground platforms maintenance, vegetable gardens weeded and prepared for planting, irrigation system maintenance, shade cloths taken down, lawns sprayed, windows cleaned, sumps cleared, skate ramp maintenance, chip laid on rose garden. Thanks to all our awesome helpers. Great to see some new helpers too.
May I wish you all a very Happy Easter. I hope you have a peaceful and restful time. School re-commences on MONDAY 1ST MAY.

David Macmillan,

EASTER ...Aranga


Holy Thursday 7.00pm at St Mary's Church
Good Friday 3.00pm at St Mary's & St Michael's
Good Friday - Way of the Cross leaving St Mary's at 10am
Easter Vigil 7.00pm at St Mary's
Easter Sunday - St Michael's 8am - St Mary's 10am & 5pm



What an action packed term! Enjoy the Easter break with family and friends and keep safe!

The students have been very busy with lots of RE topics and learning this term; Prayer, Our Opening Mass, School Charism, Liturgies for Waitangi Day, Shrove Tuesday, Ash Wednesday, the Annunciation, Palm procession, St Joseph’s, Stations of the Cross, Lent and our Caritas focus. We raised over $500 dollars for Caritas with our mufti day last Wednesday-so thanks again for your support. The money raised will go to Tonga for fresh water supplies and equipment to filter clean water.

We are now in the most important week in the Catholic calendar - Holy Week. This starts with Palm Sunday and continues with the Last Supper -which established the Eucharist, Christ’s death on Good Friday and His resurrection on Easter Sunday. On Thursday morning we have our Washing of the Feet/Last Supper Liturgy at 10:00am in the hall. You are all most welcome to attend.


Blessings to You and Yours,
Bernadette Hall - DRS


For those parents (and grandparents) who may be interested in becoming Catholic, during the month of May we will begin the Inquiry Period for the RCIA. This is the best time of year to join the RCIA which gives those who start, a full year of formation in preparation to enter the Church next Easter. You are invited to come and learn about the Catholic Faith.
This will run weekly on Thursday nights commencing Thursday 11 May 2017 for four weeks until 1 June at 7.00pm at St Mary's corner of Seddon and Ranolf Streets.
Further enquiries to Fr Eamon Kennedy at



Our prayers and sympathy are extended to the family of Olivia Martin (Room 7) on the loss of their grandad aged 90 years. RIP.


Our Lost Property box is overflowing ...

All items are on display in the back of the School Hall until Thursday. Please feel free to come and check these items anytime before Thursday 3pm.



As from next term the PTA will be replacing the juicies with a Juicie Tube which is a better option for children in the school who have allergies. This will involve a slight price increase : Sausage $1.50 ad Juicie Tube $1.50.

Mufti Day Funds raised from the recent Mufti Day last week totalled $513.00. Thank you so much everyone for your generosity.

Request for Linen:
We have received a request from Western Heights Surgery who have a project directed at needy families whose housing is likely to contribute to poor health outcomes. They run a linen bank for needy people and currently their stocks are very low.
If you are having a clean out over the holidays you may drop items off to Western Heights Medical Centre directly, or from the start of Term 2 the school is happy to take any items.

FOR SALE (ex school stock)

Flat top desks $5
Lift up lid desks $10
Small grey plastic chairs $2
Please see our caretaker if interested. Michelle Strathern Phone 022 637 5800

FOR SALE (ex school stock)
Computer monitors - Gold coin for a screen. Please see Mr James after school on Friday in room 10 to buy a screen. These screens all work and come with power and vga cables.


Some keyboards also available.

Parents - If you have a Chromebook needing a screen repair, you might find it useful to contact Paul Hintz 021 024 30817

Extra activities available at school -

Gymnastic classes are available to pupils on Thursdays in the school hall from 12.30pm to 1.15pm. Please contact Marie Hughes to learn more about this activity. Phone 34566275 (h) or 027 362 5645.

Kapa Haka:
Has commenced on Thursdays at 2pm in the school hall.
Students are able to trial Kapa Haka for 3 weeks to see whether they like it - we would especially like to see our children of Maori descent giving it a try.
On Week 11 (next week) notices will be sent home for those who wish to sign up for the remainder of the year. Mrs Dunkley (Room 6) is the teacher in charge of Kapa Haka.

Choir Practice:
Choir Practice will be held every Monday in Room 14 at 12.30pm. All children in Years 3 - 6 welcome. Mrs Nielson is in charge of Choir.

Band Practice:
Band practice is at 11.45am on Fridays in the school hall. Musical parents are most welcome to come and help at these sessions.

Pasifika Group:
Pasifika practice every Friday at 11am in Room 15.If you enjoy learning songs and dances of other Pacific cultures come along. Mrs Wallbank is in charge of the Pasifika Group.

ICT Club:
Will be starting later in the term.


You are invited -
Palarong Pinoy (Filipino Games) kids' traditional games prior to the time of gadgets) Easter Egg Hunt, and shared lunch - Easter Sunday 16 April at St Mary's School grounds from midday onwards.
Anyone welcome!@

Mandarin Corner:
Free Chinese ( Mandarin ) Lessons - for all ages
Registration and start date: 10am SAT 6 MAY at Rotorua Primary School
Mandarin Language Assistants volunteer their time to help promote Chinese Language and Culture.
MLA in-charge: Joy and Evelyn

(Bookings Essential)


Free Art Workshops:

Kia ora

To start the month long Matariki celebrations Rotorua Lakes Council will be holding an ‘All Stars’ lantern parade.

Featuring stilt walkers, drummers, jugglers and an array of handmade crafts the parade will travel through the city centre telling the story of Matariki.

We want to invite everyone to get involved and take part in a series of art workshops creating crafts that will feature in the parade.

All workshops are free and materials will be supplied – all you need to do is come along and have some fun.

To find out more visit the Matariki All Stars Parade Facebook page and register for any of the workshops by emailing or phoning Creative Director Ali Rogers on 027 921 8652.

Easter Egg Competition - Sunday Market


Thinking swimming?
We offer a variety of swimming programs with our partners in swimming and therefore can be the onestop shop for your swimming needs.
Orange Swim School at Holdens Bay, recently awarded Quality Swim School status
Swimming NZ is where learning to swim starts. Youngsters next progress to the Aquatic Centre.
Aquatic Centre here we offer a number of swimming programs

Our new program starts in Term 2, Ika Roa (long fish) is a post learn to swim program where the youngsters will further develop with skills and water awareness. Ika Roa is a new, fun and exciting program.

Further programs include Ika Iti (little fish) and Ika Nui (big fish).

Make enquiries now, contact us at or text Henk at 027-2203470


ST MARYS APP - Download now

For sports notifications, please download the St Mary's APP (see above) the more we have sign up the more you will know what is happening with your child/rens games.


Season over until Term 4

Touch Rugby

Season over until Term 4


Season over until Term 4

Mini Marathon

Friday 5 May is the Mini Marathon. If you are not using the bus to transport your child to the Mini Marathon, then you will need to drop your child off at the EEC Friday morning at 8:30am and collect them at 11:30am to return them to school. If you can not do this, then let me know so I can arrange to have them transported down by others parents who have offered to transport children.

Winter Sports

Registrations are now closed. Thank you to all the children that have registered to play winter sports.

I am now in the process of allocating teams, once this is completed I will place up on the School Website under the Sports Tab.

We are still needing coaches for the following teams:

ANZ Future Ferns - Year 1/2, Galatians, played Monday afterschool
ANZ Future Ferns - Year 1/2, Little Faiths, played Monday afterschool
ANZ Future Ferns - Year 3/4, Saints, played Saturday mornings

Team - Cougars, Year 0/1, played Friday's afterschool

All games played on Saturday
Grade 5: Korimako's

Parents please note that some of the forms that have been returned have had NO PAYMENT. Please be aware that children who have paid will take priority over a child that has not paid. If you wish for your child to play a sport, we do have some grants available. Please see David Macmillian for further information.

Central Bay of Plenty Swimming

Thank you again to all our kids that participated in the CBOP, those children that placed have been sent home today woth their certificates. Again parents click here for Results

A Special Mention

Congrats to Oscar Pion, for winning the award for
'Most Dedicated' from Rotorua boxing gym


School Holiday Programmes

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Holiday Camp Poster (APRIL) (3).pdf


Camp regn (2).pdf

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Rotorua Development Flyer.pdf


Rotorua Netball 2017.pdf


RCA Girls Cricket Programme 2017.pdf

Playtopia or Kid Central

Should you require assistance over the holidays with childcare, Playtopia and Kid Central have Holiday Programmes availible. They also have a Morning Care Pick Up service if your child needs a ride to school.

Call either
350 1341 for Playtopia - Website
350 1344 for Kid Central - Email:

Sports Uniforms

Still a few uniforms to come parents, please check your child/ren draws, wardrobes for any St Mary's uniforms.
Also as we are nearing the end of Summer Sports, please start returning your sports uniforms so that I can have uniforms ready for Miniball next term.

Team Photos

Coaches/Parents please take some team photos for the website and the year book. You can email them to me with the team name: We also have a St Mary's Facebook page, so feel free to tag your photos to our page.



Term 1: 1 February to 13 April
Term 2: 1 May to 7 July
Term 3: 24 July to 29 September
Term 4: 16 October to 15 December