Newsletter No 21, 25 July 2018

Kia Ora,

We received excellent feedback from all three Catholic Character reviewers. They found that our school was very welcoming, our special character is very prominent, students are articulate and know what our school is all about, hard working staff, energetic and knowledgeable DRS, a supportive parent body and an engaged board. So, thank you everyone, particularly to those who came to the Parent meeting or submitted a written response or were happy to chat with the reviewers as you watched the races at the Junior Cross Country . The reviewers’ comments confirm that we are a strong Catholic School.

Kakano and Manuka had an excellent Cross Country on Thursday. Great organisation from Kate Keaney and Nikki Rowe and as a result the event went very smoothly. Thanks to the many parents who came and supported their children.

Yesterday we hosted Doncaster Secondary College Band. Our children enjoy performances, so it is a good opportunity to hear their school band, concert band and a Rock Band. A number of Australian schools are playing in Rotorua schools this week and are participating in Rhapsody Rotorua.

Tonight and tomorrow afternoon our Kakano and Manuka teams are hosting 3-way conferences for parents and children. To book an interview time please go to: OR

go to and the code to use is sktnk
Wednesday - bookings can be made from 3.15 to 6.10
Thursday - bookings can be made from 3.15 to 4.55

This Friday we have mufti-mania. This is a NZ Catholic Schools initiative and all the money raised is going to a Tongan school. Here is some background:

In February, Cyclone Gita caused widespread damage throughout Tonga. One of the worst affected schools was Apifo’ou College in Nuku’alofa.
Join with all the Catholic primary schools around New Zealand as the NZCPPA and Caritas raise money through Mufti Mania to help the school:
Repair school classrooms and labs
Replace lost teaching resources

Tomorrow we have our PTA disco. Discos are a lot of fun for the children. The disco starts at 5.30pm in our hall and finishes at 7.00pm. If you leave your children at the disco, please ensure you pick them up at 7.00pm. The theme is, ‘come dressed in your rainbow best’.

This is David Bach’s last week with us this year. He starts his Royal Society Leadership Sabbatical at the start of Term 3. We wish David all the best, I think David is very deserving of this award and I know he will enjoy the change of pace and scenery. Jill Dinniss will be teaching in David’s class for the rest of the year.

The holiday reading programme is on again these holidays. The reading logs will be sent home tomorrow. There are many great prizes this time. When children hand their logs back, you might ask them a couple of questions about the books. Children can start entering their books as soon as they get their logs. The reading logs must be returned to school by Tuesday 31 July and the draw will take place in the second week of Term 3, August 3rd. PLEASE, please keep your children reading over the holidays. If you are short of books at home, you could take your child to the town library. If you read to your child, enter that on your child’s log too.

Our school library will be in full operation for Term 3. Thanks Kay for all your hard work. Why not check out the Library blog and see what is on offer?

Thank you for all your support over the term, it has been a busy term. I hope you enjoy your break and you have some quality time with your children. I would also like to thank the staff of St Mary’s for their hard work this term.

David Macmillan, Principal.

Our school website and app now have a more user friendly calendar where you can see what is coming up at school. Be sure to check it out to stay informed. Click here for link

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The PTA is having its annual raffle. Parents: Please check your child's bag as raffle books will be sent home today. If you did not receive one and wish to do so - please contact the office. If you received a book and do not wish to sell it - please return same to the office. Last year a few unsold books were discovered in children's bags after the event.
Thanks for your support and co-operation.

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ANIWANIWA DISCO - 5th July, 5.30-7pm $2 Entry! Come Dressed in your RAINBOW best Everyone welcome, but please, preschoolers must be supervised.
We are also in need of volunteers for the night. If you are able to lend a hand at any stage it would be greatly appreciated, please contact Heidi on 021911305 or Lynda on 0276299421.

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July School Holidays Animation Workshop for Year 5 and 6 students
See St Mary's website for full details/cost of this exciting workshop coming up in the holidays.

Homework Club – Every Thursday
The Homework Club is specifically set up to offer extra learning time and support for our Pasifika students after school.
Every Thursday from 3.00pm-4.00pm students can meet in room 15 to complete any home reading or homework they would like support with. Parents are also welcome to attend, to gain tips and ideas on how to support learning at home.
*If you would like your child to attend but they are not Pasifika, they are still welcome to attend.

School lunches are available from Pita Pit, Rotorua on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Lunches need to be ordered online via Children need to come to the School Office at lunchtime to collect their ordered lunch.

On Fridays the children are able to buy a sausage and a juicie. This is an initiative of the PTA. Children place their orders with their own class teacher and orders are delivered to their class at lunchtime.
Sausages $1.50 - Juicies $1.50


Invoices for unpaid fees will be sent out at the beginning of next term. We would appreciate outstanding fees to be paid as soon as possible please. If you have a query regarding your child's fees, please contact Margo Mason or call into the office.

From Our Director of Religious Studies:

Konnichiwa Everyone,
The Catholic Review Team were impressed with what they saw and heard here at St Mary’s. The collective efforts of our students. community, support staff and teaching staff, leadership teams, BOT, PTA, and Parish are what makes us stand out as examples of living the values of our school and the values as taught in the Gospels.
Classes have begun to focus on our new school logo and identify ways we as individuals and collectively work toward making those values real. Over the next few months staff will work on key phrases to accompany the values on our school logo. It looks fantastic to see our new logo around the school!

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The Young Vinnies organised and collected the food bank items. Room 1 and the Young Vinnies delivered it all to the Church today. Thanks to all who contributed. The winning house was Pompallier!

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Have a blessed and safe holiday with your families. A good time to down the devices and spend time together as a family. I have challenged the school students to try to attend a Mass over these holidays. A good opportunity to give thanks for what we have and pray for those families in need.

Blessings to you all

Bernie Hall-Director of Religious Studies

Catholics Returning Home
You are invited to attend a refresher course for Catholics wanting to return to the practice of their Catholic faith. This will run weekly at 7.00 pm on Tuesday nights commencing 3rd July 2018 for four weeks until 24th July at St. Mary's, corner of Seddon and Ranolf Street. For further enquiries, please email Fr. Eamon Kennedy at


Arts in Motion
Arts in Motion practice is on Wednesdays. Lyrical and Jazz are at 7.30am until 8.30am. Hip hop is after school until 4pm.
Arts in Motion is coming up quick, 13 August. A letter went home last week. if your child did not receive one please contact me. Things are looking great and coming together nicely. Please keep an eye on the blog for updates, notices and videos.
Further information please contact Shanelle McCashin Ph 021 02657995

School Absences:
If your child is away from school for any reason, please notify our office staff using one of these options :
Phone 3481 701
Link to website:
See quicklink on website (top of page) on website

Change of Address/Contact Phone numbers:
We always appreciate notification if your personal contact details have changed. Please notify the office or email :
The school newsletter is available on Wednesday afternoons. A hard copy is always available from front reception if required - otherwise you will be emailed a copy.

Hi everyone,
My name is Sylvia Dunkley and I am the teacher in Room 3. I have been looking after our second hand uniforms for many years. If your family is finding ther cost of school uniforms difficult, please call and see me. I might be able to help you out. I have many families who I do swaps with - they give me uniforms that are too small and I give them larger ones. Works for everyone! I also have a selection of school shoes. Please feel free to pop into Room 3 and see me, preferably after school.

Sports News


St Marys have entered a team into the BOP Rugby Sevens tournament on August 14th.
Mrs Dinniss will be running a TRIAL for this team on Tuesday 24th July (first Tuesday back Term 3) straight afterschool on the field. This is for Year 5 and 6 only.

Cross Country 2018

Well done to Leah Field, Madeleine Keaney, Maiah Ngawhika and Anaia O'Connell who represented our school at the BOP Cross Country last week. You all ran really well. Congrats girls!

Tough Gal and Tough Guy

It's that time again for our kids to get dirty!

The Junior Tough Guy and Gal Challenge at Lakes Ranch in Rotorua on Wednesday, 15 August 2018. This is a chance for our school kids to get involved in New Zealand's biggest mud run series.

The Junior Tough Guy and Gal Challenge will include many of the same amazing perks as adult version, such as outstanding goodie bags, challenging obstacles, incredible venues, hot showers and spot prizes. There is a 1.5km course for school years 3 to 4 and 3km course for years 5 & 6's.

Please note that the cost for Early Birds is $25 (until 3rd August) and after this is $30. Closing date is 10th August 2018.

There has been a copy of prices sent out saying $20 early bird and $25 after. PLEASE note this is incorrect!!!

St Mary's App - Download Now

Parents, if you don't have the School App please make sure you download this so you do not miss out on sports updates. With winter sports here and the rain that is expected over winter months it pays to know when there are cancellations. Please ensure you click (under settings) the sports your children are participating in. Winter Sports are Football, Netball, Miniball and Hockey.


Check on the website for your child's draw.

Football Uniform is:
Maroon PE Shorts
St Mary's Sports Socks (Blue and Maroon)
Football Top (to be collected from the Front Office)

**WAIBOP are running a Futsal holiday programme these school holidays - click here for details.


No netball this Saturday 7th July or throughout the school holidays.
Next game is the Mother Earth Future Ferns (Yr 0-4) on Monday 23rd July (first day back Term 3).

Draw is up on the website.

Netball Uniform is:
St Mary's Netball Dress
Navy Socks
Child's own court shoes / sneakers

Your child can most definitely wear warm clothing before and after a game, but please stick to the uniform when playing.


Miniball draw is on the website

Miniball Uniform is:
St Mary's Maroon PE Shorts
St Mary's Singlet (to be collected from the Front Office) if you played touch then you will be playing in the same singlet.
Child's own court shoes / Sneakers

Juniors play on a Monday and Middles and Seniors play on a Friday.


Maxi, Mini and Funstick rounds are on Saturday July 7th
The new Mini draw will be up by Wednesday.

There will be a FUNSTICK prize giving at 12:45 on Saturday!

The draw will be available on the BOP Hockey Website today:

Hockey Uniform is:
St Mary's Maroon PE Shorts
St Mary's Hockey Sock (same as Football socks) Must have to hold shin pads in place.
St Mary's Hockey Top (to be collected from the Front Office)
Child's own hockey shoes / sneakers
Shin pads
Hockey Stick (Belly High)


Tuesday & Thursday Lunchtime in the school hall

A Special Mention

Well done to more of our top 10 place getters from the Rotorua Interschool Cross Country Rural Cluster
Joshuagh Richardson - 10th, 10yr old Boys
Samuel James - 7th, 8yr old boys
Sahr Kortequee, 10th, 9yr old boys
Danni Coleman, 8th, 8yr old girls
Great running kids!

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JUMP is a weekly music programme for 3-7 year olds run by new tutor Angela Frank. Starting in Term 3, Wednesdays 3.30-4pm at Rotorua Music School.
To enrol visit

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Looking for a fun way to explore Rotorua these school holidays? Colour the Night is on Thursday 12 July. From 5pm the city will light up with lots of cool arts, crafts, performance and music. From fire dancers at the Night Market to star making at The Arts Village, music in The Monarch Room and poetry at the library, there's something for everyone. All activities are free, no bookings are required. Simply pop in to whichever venues take your fancy and take in the wonder of the arts here in Rotorua. For more information visit Colour the Night for Matariki 2018 on Facebook.

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Rotorua Public Library - Holiday activities:

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Term 1: 7 February to 13 April
Term 2: 30 April to 6 July
Term 3: 23 July to 28 September
Term 4: 15 October to 19 December
Teacher Only days : 2 February, 5 February