Newsletter No 01 12 February 2020

Dear Parents,

Welcome back to all our families and children. I hope you all had a great break with your families over the holiday time.

It is great to see our children returning from holiday, rested and ready to go for a new year of learning. Thanks to our fantastic staff who have been working hard over the holidays preparing for the return of our students. I am looking forward to an exciting year. A special thanks to Richard, our new caretaker, who has worked hard to get our school looking tip top for the start of the year.

It was so good to have those two days last week for you and your child to meet this year’s teacher, date your records, download apps, meet oral health people and register for this term’s sports teams. Thank you for supporting this.

A special welcome to our new staff members. Virginia Nicol is teaching in Totara Room 3 for 3 days per week. Ray Guilford (Mr G) is our new support staff member working with all the children at different times of the day. He is also a keen chess player and is very keen to get a chess club up and running.

A special welcome to all our 33 new children and their families. It is great to have you join our large St Mary’s family and I hope you find your time with us rewarding.

Our International student Jack Zhang was welcomed along with a large group of Internationals from JPC with a powhiri at the Apumoana Marae yesterday morning. A group from our kapa haka group with the JPC and St Michael’s students were part of the powhiri. Welcome Jack.

Tonight we have the Regional Catholic Schools’ Commissioning Mass at 6.00pm in our church. Schools from Whakatane, Opotiki, Matata, Tauranga, Taupo, Tauranga, Mount Maunganui are invited to celebrate Mass with Bishop Steve. The Mass is specifically for blessing the staff, students and parents in all our schools. All our students are welcome but we will specifically invite our senior students. It is important that we attend this Mass with the Bishop. There is a light supper served following Mass.

Our ‘start of the year’ Mass is FRIDAY 21st FEBRUARY and it would be fantastic if you could join us. Mass is at 9.00am in our Parish Church and we particularly welcome parents of new children. For new parents, our Mass normally finishes around 9.45am.

TUESDAY 10 MARCH is the swimming sports for our Year 3 to 6 children. Whanau support will be needed on the day especially within the pool. Some of our children are reluctant swimmers and your help would be greatly appreciated.
Please contact Lorna Dobson by email if you are able to help: lornad@stmarysrotorua’

A number of children read lots of books over the holidays and we will be having our lucky log draw this FRIDAY. If you have been reading stories to your child, that counts too. Just write the story on the holiday log. Please continue to support your child/children reading at home.

Summer sports will be starting soon. If you want your child to play, please register TODAY. Registration forms have been sent home with your child/children this week. Sports that are available are Flippaball (Year 3 up), Cricket (all ages) and Touch (all ages). Payment is required at the time of registration.

THE COUNTDOWN IS ON ..... four weeks to our Gala Day, Thursday 5 March. This is an important date on our calendar and we need everyone to help make the gala a success. A newsletter from the PTA will be sent home soon outlining ways you might be able to help.

PTA Meeting/Gala Organisation:
TODAY: Wednesday 12th February, 7pm in the school staffroom. Anyone who is interested in joining the PTA or who would like to help at our upcoming Gala on the 7th March, please come along to our meeting.

GALA SPONSORS - if you are able to help us out with sponsorship this would be greatly appreciated.If you are able, can you please contact Heidi on 021 911305. Thank you.

12th February Diocesan Commissioning Mass: 6.00pm. St Mary’s Church
21st February Opening School Mass. 9.00am St Mary’s Church
26th February Ash Wednesday
27th February Warriors visit
5th March Gala Day
10th March Swimming Sports for children in Years 3 to 6
11th March Caritas Rice Day
16-20th March. Totara classes on camp
20th March St Joseph’s Mass. 9.00am St Mary’s Church
26th March Annunciation Liturgy
2nd April Stations of the Cross Liturgy
7th April Donkey Parade
9th April Washing of the Feet Liturgy
10th April End of term

Have an awesome week.

David Macmillan, Principal.

Sheryl Todd Room 1
Susan Nelson Room 2
Sylvia Dunkley (Team Leader) Room 3
Virginia Nicol Room 3
Bevan James Room 4
Bernie Hall Room 5
Jill Dinniss Room 12
Kate Keaney Room 14
Nicole Lovegrove (Team Leader) Room 15
David Bach Room 16
Lorette Teidt Room 17
Michelle Ryan Kakano 1
Lorna Dobson Kakano 2
Karen Tabuteau (Team Leader) Kakano 3
Sara Mines (Team Leader) Kakano 4
Lorraine Thomson Kakano 5
Sany-Joy Mareroa Kakano 6


Hello everyone, and welcome back! It is great to see everyone again after a restful holiday. A special welcome to all our new families and staff members who join us in 2020!

Term one is a busy one in terms of the Liturgical year. Your child’s teacher will be covering a lot in Religious Education this term, so keep asking your child what they are learning in RE at school. This term we look at prayer, celebrate several Liturgies such as Waitangi Day, The Annunciation, our school charism, The Stations of the Cross. We also focus on Lent and what that means and how it builds up to Holy Week.

Caritas and the work they do is an ongoing study this term. Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand is the NZ Catholic Bishops’ agency for justice, peace and development. We are working on behalf of the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference for a world free of poverty and injustice through community development, advocacy, education, and emergency relief.

All are warmly invited to the Diocese Commissioning Mass at St Mary’s Church TONIGHT at 6:00pm. Many other schools in our diocese will join us for this. If your child is attending please make sure they are in school uniform.

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Your child’s RE book will come home at least once a term so you can see what they have been learning in RE. Again, a class prayer journal will also be available for your child to take home and add a prayer to it. The prayer could be anything from praying for your family, pets, a local or world event, and special occasions.

Students will all get the opportunity to take the journal home and add a prayer and decorate their page. The journal then becomes a classroom resource students can use at prayer times.

Bernie Hall-DRS

Invitation to participate in St Mary's Parish Alpha Course - March 2020

This year St Mary's Parish is running a Day-Time Alpha Course beginning on the 3rd March, and an Evening-Time Alpha beginning on the 3rd September.

What is Alpha?
Alpha is an 11-week programme which looks at the meaning of life and faith through a Christian perspective.

Alpha is a good introduction to Jesus, Prayer, the Scriptures and Community.

You may register on the Parish website
OR email your details to
OR you may fill out a registration form found at the back of St Michael’s or St Mary’s Churches.

Catholics Returning Home.
You are invited to attend a refresher course for Catholics wanting to return to the practice of their Catholic faith or for Catholics wanting to renew their faith and their prayer life. Everyone is invited to attend. This will run weekly at 7.00 pm on Tuesday nights commencing 3rd March 2020 for four weeks until 24th March at St. Mary's, corner of Seddon and Ranolf Street. For further enquiries, please email Fr. Eamon Kennedy at

Lucky Book orders are due back 21st February at 12 noon. NO late orders please.
If paying by cheque please make payable to Scholastic New Zealand.
Please ensure the child's name and classroom are marked on the order form.

Sports News

All sports uniform must be returned to the School Office by Friday 3.15pm.
If you still have a Touch singlet or Cricket top and are playing these sports this term you MUST contact Whaea Leanne.
No uniform will be issued to children if they have uniform that isn't returned.

We will be enforcing our Sports Uniform Policy from this term. This can be found on our school website under Our Sports

Please ensure you have our school app and have set up to receive notifications for the sports your tamariki/children are playing. Instructions on how to do this can be found here.

Registrations are now open for Term 1 Summer Sports. Forms can be collected from the School Office or downloaded below under Registration Forms.

All sports registrations must be in with fees paid by 3.15pm Wednesday 12th February 2020.
so that teams can be allocated for competition which start for Flippaball Tuesday 18th Feb, Touch Tuesday 18th/Wednesday 19th Feb and Cricket Thursday 13th/Saturday 15th Feb.

Please contact our Sports Coordinator, Whaea Leanne if you have any queries. or 027 285 7579 or via the School Office on 348 1701.

Sport BoP are holding a Rotorua-wide Go By Bike Day next Wednesday 19 February and one of the pit stops will be on the Ranolf Street shared pathway. There will be a gazebo set up at 132 Ranolf Street, opposite Guidough’s Bakery, offering fruit and spot prizes for commuters on wheels.

We would like our St Mary’s school community to participate in this amazing event.

The plan for Wednesday 19th February:
8am – meet at Sophia Street with bikes / scooters
8:10am – make way down Ranolf Street shared path
What we need:
Parents / caregivers to marshal / help out at road crossings assisting groups of our wheeled commuters safely across the roads.
Please contact Whaea Leanne, School Sports Coordinator if you can assist or require more information. or 027 285 7579 or via School Office 348 1701

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The Rotorua Motorcycle club 2020 interschool MX challenge is on this year, and Saint Marys will be entering a team in the Primary category, racing on Saturday, 21st march.

If you ride and would like to be apart of this event, please send your interest into Leanne, Sports coordinator at
All levels of riders welcome, it's a fun day to all come together and ride as a team.

at Manuka Crescent
Only $50 for the rest of the season. This includes fun matches and games on Friday afternoon plus all the benefits of being a member. Starts Friday Feb 7. Contact Debra.
Primary aged Friday 3.30-4.15
Intermediate and High School Friday 4.15-5.45
Professional Tennis Coaching with Justin Megraw on Wednesday and Thursday at extra cost. Groups start Feb 5th. See website for details

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If your child has achieved something special, sporting or otherwise, please email Leanne with a blurb and photo

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Digital Natives Academy has been providing the Rotorua community with FREE digital tech workshops for half a decade.

DNA likes to keep learning relevant and exciting. We illustrate clear
career pathways while inspiring and guiding students along the way.
Students move from basic programming and code language to creating
characters and exploring world-building.

TANIWHA TECH are after school digital workshops.

First Lesson is FREE!!

WHEN: 4pm - 6pm Weekdays
WHERE: 1181-1185 Pukuatua Street
(Usually $20 per lesson)

Limited spaces.

If you are interested in joining us, click on the link below to book a class!
Click> Book Now > Classes > Choose the number of students > desired
workshop > Select date.

Scholarships are available. EMAIL us to apply.

School Dates for 2020:

Term 1 Tuesday 4 Feb - Thursday 9 April.
Term 2 Tuesday 28 April - Friday 3 July
Term 3 Monday 20 July - Friday 25 September
Term 4 Monday 12 October - Thursday 17 December