Newsletter No 39, 6 December 2017

Kia Ora,

Over the last week we had many great activities happening for our children:
Advent Liturgy, ELL children had a lovely picnic with HEAPS of food, Totara had an awesome day at Rainbow Springs, Year 6's were on retreat while the Year 5's had a Leadership Day, Kahikatea team had a Book Week, Totara team had Speech Finals, Christmas Parade, Manuka’s Big Day Out in the Redwoods, a team involved in the NZ and Asia Pacific Vex Robotic Competition in Rotorua and tomorrow the Kakano team has their Big Day Out.

A big thank you to all who assisted and participated in the Christmas parade last weekend. The children looked wonderful in their costumes. Again, we combined with St Michael’s School and it was great that we could have a Christian presence in the parade . A special thanks to Damian Nicholls who supplied and drove the float truck on the day and to Michelle Strathern for running around picking up the hay bales and coordinating the stable build, David Ronanyne who carefully put the stable together, Sara Field who lent us the hay bales, Mary Kusabs who painted the hesian apron around the truck, Enzo’s mum, Nicole Wu for making a huge number of costumes, Viv Radley who made the shepherd’s head gear, the Dodunski family for providing the little horse and pet sheep, Tylah and Hadley for leading the pets, Palmers Garden Centre for loaning us the Palms and the many parents who helped prepared the float on Saturday afternoon and dismantled it after the parade. Thanks also to the parents who dressed their children for the parade as well as to staff members Bernie Hall, our DRS and Shanelle MacCashin who helped on the day, and to the parents who walked beside the float during the parade. A huge THANK YOU to you all. As you can see it does take a big effort to get a float ready for the parade.

On Friday we have our end of year school mass at 1.00 pm. Then on the following Tuesday at 9.00 am we will hold our school prize-giving in the school hall. You are very welcome to attend both occasions. If your child is receiving an award on Tuesday, you will receive a notification with your child’s report. Reports will be sent home this Friday. I hope you all enjoy discussing your children’s progress with them. I was very pleased with the reports this year. The children have done particularly well.

Next Friday (December 15th) we will commission our Year 6s at a final assembly at 11.00 am in the school hall. Again, everyone is invited to attend.

Early next week your child will bring home information about reading over the holidays. Children must READ, READ, READ during their time away from school. Some children’s progress can go backwards if they do not continue to read over the holidays. Please keep your child reading. Books also make great Christmas gifts!

This MONDAY 11TH at 11.15 we are having Carols on the Field. This is the first time this has been organised for our school and it would be great to see as many of you as possible at this. Each class will be singing a Christmas Carol. It will be a cracker!

Next Thursday 14th the whole school is involved in our school’s tryathlon. Children can ride trikes, three wheelers and bikes, swim in the school pool and run around a course. We need parents to help with marshalling etc, so if you can help please let your child’s teacher know or email Lorna on

Some children will receive an invitation to my Principal’s special morning tea, which is to be held on Monday morning in the staffroom. At the end of each term three hard working children have been nominated from each class to come along and enjoy a tasty morning tea. An invitation will come home with your child.

Thank you to all of those who have donated to the St Vincent de Paul Foodbank. We will hand the food over on Friday after Mass.

Once again we have produced a school magazine. It is a fantastic record of the year. The price is $5.00 and it is certainly good value. Thank you to Ricoh Copiers who sponsor this book. The magazine will be available next week but you must pre-order from the school office if you want a copy. Last year we ran out of magazines and some of our children missed out on getting one, so get your order in to avoid disappointment.

The building programme is in full swing at St Mary’s and the concrete foundations for the new block will be completed before Christmas. The staffroom renovation and the painting and carpeting of upstairs is to be completed for the start of Term 1. The new classrooms are scheduled to be finished at the end of Term 1.

Congratulations to Madeline Keaney who was placed third in the BOP Primary Interschools competition in the High Jump.

Congratulations also to our senior Flippa Ball teams placed : 1st St Marys Cheetahs, 2nd Lions, 3rd Jaguars, and Junior Grade A St Marys Tigers placed 1st.

Have a great week.
David Macmillan, Principal.


2018 students
Parents, if your child/children are not returning to St Mary's next year (excluding year 6 leavers) could you please advise the office urgently as classes are now being set for 2018. With thanks.


Thursday 7 December Junior Big Day out
Friday 8 December Reports to Yr 3 - 6 students
Friday 8 December End of year Mass : 1pm St Mary's Church
Tuesday 12 December Prizegiving : School Hall 9am
Wednesday 13 December Junior Athletics Day
Thursday 14 December School Tryathlon (All students)
Friday 15 December Missioning of Year 6 students : 11am School Hall
Friday 15 December School closes : 12 midday

If any families want to access the latest Chromebook deals suppliers are offering to our Year 3-6 parents, check out the information in the Elearning section of the A-Z Guide under Our School on our School Website


It was wonderful to spend the day with the year 6 students on Friday. What a great group of kids. A huge thanks to Molly and Julia Florence and friends Te Ohongaake Swanson Hall and Maureen Kilkelly who assisted Mrs Todd and myself on the day. I know the children all got something special from the retreat and appreciated the time to reflect and have fun as a year group.

A very special thanks to Viv Radley for making shepherds outfits for our Santa Parade last week.The kids looked fantastic!

Our final school Mass for 2017 is this Friday at 1:00pm. Please join us if you can. At this Mass we reflect on the year that has been and pray for our year 6 students as they embark on their next journey of Faith.

Staff also had the opportunity to reflect at Tuesday’s RE staff meeting. Evaluating our RE Curriculum delivery is important. Knowing what works in delivering RE to students and where there are gaps across the levels helps us better plan to meet the needs of both staff and students. We also took time to celebrate the many events we have planned and prepared, and our Liturgies and Masses over the year. Students are looking at Advent and also what Christmas means to us as Christians.

Bernadette Hall-Director of Religious Studies

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To the amazing St Mary’s community...

Thank you so much for your generosity and support of Angel Tree. Together we have made a difference this Christmas for over one hundred children in Rotorua and Taupo who do not have their parents with them on Christmas Day. Thank you.

Year 5 & 6 Camp 2018

The Year 5 & 6 camp for 2018 to Auckland is in Term 1 - 26 - 29 March.
We would like to encourage you to start a payment plan for this activity. The cost will be approximately $350.00 and we require the fee to be paid before the students go on camp.
Many thanks to those parents who are already underway with payments. Any queries to Margo Mason -


United Aquatic Sports - Te Arawa Swimming - Orange Swim School
- delivering the full aquatic package - or orange.swimschool@gmail.comor 027-2203470 (text)


Catholic Diocese Education Savings Account Terms and Conditions brochure and application form may be found in the office foyer. Interest rates for deposits also available.

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:

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.

Babysitter available over the holidays. A1 references. Phone Molly 0212923459.

Extra activities available at school -

Kapa Haka:
There will be no more Kapa Haka sessions until Term One 2018.

Pasifika Group:
The Pasifika group meet every Friday at 11am in Room 15.

ICT Club:
Fridays in Room 4. 12.30 to 1.15pm. For middle/senior students.

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WINZ approved provider and supplier
Kaore Nga Kutu have been approved to supply services and products to WINZ clientele. It is now possible to submit a quote to WINZ and on approval the treatment can be done or products provided. 100% natural product and 100% made.Lice are detrimental to the health of our children and we want to stop the infestation. For further information contact 021 813 993


ST MARYS APP - Download now

Summer Sports is nearing the end of season, please be sure to amend your settings to include the sport/s your child/ren is/are playing. The summer sports this season are, Touch Rugby, Flippaball and Cricket. Once you have downloaded, you will receive changes and/or cancellations etc....

Summer Sports

Touch Rugby

Final Draw is up on the website - Good Luck to the Robins and the Weka's


Well done to all our St Mary's teams, you all did well this season.


Cricket has ended for the season

Topguns Tennis Holiday Programme.

Venue- Lynmore Tennis Club.

Days- Monday 18th, Tuesday 19th, and Wednesday 20th December.

Times- 9 am to 12 pm. Cost $30 per day.

Bring food and drinks, racquets available if needed.

Learn tennis from a Tennis NZ Competition Coach and have some fun as well.

Swim Rotoroua

Swim Rotorua is a very friendly swimming club. We have a place for you, whether you are young and starting out, or have heaps of experience and just want to compete.
Check us out at Swimming Rotorua

Weetbix Tryathlon


This Sunday 10th December at Kuirau Park

Event: Rotorua Tryathlon
Location: Kuirau Park
Date: Sunday 10th December 2017

St Mary's will have a Marquee up so feel free come on over.

A Special Mention

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MARG'S SWIM SCHOOL - St Mary's Heated Pool
Term 1 - 5 February 2018
*Quality programme for all ages
*Specialty classes for 5 - 6 years old water confidence
*Experienced teachers
"We guarantee to teach your child to swim"
Phone Margaret 0274599286 or 07-3482951
(please include phone no with email.)

TE TAHI (The Faith) -
Expressions of interest are being sought from our Catholic parishioners to work with the Rotorua police to reduce the impact of family harm.
Presently Rotorua police attend up to 10 callouts to homes where domestic incidents occur. They can deal with the perpetrators but do not have time or resources to support the victims.
Te Tahi is seeking your availability for comfort and support to victims; practical help for temporary repairs; food items; baking teams; prayer teams; trained councillors.
Forms are available in the school office if you feel you could offer support - or Phone Gary 347 8061 for
more information.


Bring your family to one of the farmS being opened in the BOP and see what happens down on the farm. You can talk to a farmer about what they are doing to help care for NZ's waterways, see where milk comes from, and enjoy a fun day out with activities for the kids.


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