Newsletter No 21, 25 July 2018

Kia Ora,

Welcome back to Term 3. We have an action packed term planned with great learning experiences for our students. Our concept for this term is "Exploration" and the key understanding is ‘going into the unknown’. Classes will study the concept in different learning contexts.

With David Bach on his Science Leadership Sabbatical, we welcome Jill Dinniss to Room 11. Jill is well known by our children as she has been relieving in our school for a number of years. We also welcome Lorraine Thompson who has started teaching with the Kakano team (Room 19). She too, has been relieving at our school for a couple of years. I am sure, if you have children in their classes, you will make yourselves known to these two teachers.

We welcome our new students who began this week at St Mary’s: We hope these children and their families enjoy being part of the St Mary’s community. Please make them feel very welcome.

Our Holiday Reading Programme has been running over the holidays. My hope is that we have had over 90% of our students participating in this programme. If you read to your child, log it on the child’s reading log. Logs need to brought back to school by Wednesday 1st August. We have lots of cool prizes for the lucky draw. All those children who participate are eligible to go in the draw for a prize.

Many of our children were involved in many different competitions over the holidays.

Abigail Sims was the overall winner of the Rats Duathlon Series (Girls Section) and Dylan Gruepink won both his races in his first ever Swim Meet.

A number of our children also did very well at the Rotorua Speech and Drama Competition held over the holidays.

I also received this email from Swim Rotorua: -
Just to let you know some very exciting news from two of your students.
Two St Marys students competed as part of the Swim Rotorua Team at the Taranaki Regional Swimming Championships from 20-22 July.
Kaia Joyce (10 yrs) raced in nine events in the 10 and under age group. Kaia won an outstanding Nine GOLD medals. She also provisionally broke a Bay of Plenty Swimming Record for 10 year old girls in the 100m Individual Medley.
Meanwhile Ariel Muchirahondo (9yrs and competing in the 10 and under age group) won 7 GOLD medals from his 9 events. Ariel also provisionally broke four Bay of Plenty Records for 9 year old boys – in 100 Individual Medley, 100 and 200 backstroke and 100 freestyle. The backstroke records were previously held by Olympian Kane Radford (an ex-St Marys student.)
Outstanding achievements from these two!

We always love hearing about our students' achievements. Please let us know if your child has done well in a competition or made rep teams etc.

And finally JPC has invited you to upcoming information evenings at JPC featuring:
What is Dyslexia and How You Can Help?
Wednesday 25th July, 2018
Edmund Rice Centre – John Paul College
Gold coin donation

Anxiety and Resilience. Dr Lucy Hone
Wednesday 18th September, 2018. 7.00-9.00pm
Edmund Rice Centre - John Paul College
Gold coin donation
These presentations are highly recommended.

Well, that’s it for this week. Thank you to parents and children who have sold our raffle tickets. A reminder that raffle books are due back on Monday 30th July, Holiday Reading Logs and the Colouring Competition are due back Tuesday 31st July.

David Macmillan, Principal.

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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.
If you would like to take a book to sell please see the office.
Thanks for your support and co-operation.

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Three Way Student/Parent/Teacher Conferences are scheduled for Tuesday 31 July and Wednesday 1 August for our Year 3-6 classes. To book an interview time please go to:

OR go to and the event code to use is qdcsx

Tues 31 July - bookings can be made from 3.10 to 6.00
Wed 1 August - bookings can be made from 3.10 to 5.30

The purpose of the conference is to share your child's learning and set goals for Term 3. Appointments are for 10 minutes. If you feel that you need longer than the allocated 10 minutes please show respect for other families by asking the class teacher if you could make an appointment for another day.

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Check out our blog for Notices and updates!!! We are going great!
All practice times and dates are on the blog as well as videos and ticketing information.

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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.

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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.

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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

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Invoices will be sent home with your child tomorrow (Thursday), so please look out for them. If there is a query or an error with your account, please do not hesitate to contact Margo Mason or the office.

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Lucky book orders are due back by Friday 10 August at 12 noon. No late orders please. If paying by cheque please make payable to Scholastic New Zealand.
Remember to put your child's name and class number on top of the form.
If the order is a gift please indicate this on the order form and it will be left in the office for collection.

From Our Director of Religious Studies:

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Konnichiwa Everyone,
It is wonderful to see everyone back from school holidays rested and ready to go for term 3! This term classes are focussing on The Communion of Saints strand and then the Church strand. We also look at our school charism, will celebrate Mary Mackillop Day, the Assumption of Mary the Mother of Jesus and have our Nativity of Mary Mass. We have our Social Justice week in Week 8 this term. Please ask your child throughout the term what they are learning in Religious Education at school.
Catholic Social Teaching (CST) is based on the belief that God has a plan for creation, a plan to build his kingdom of peace, love and justice. It holds that God has a special place in this story for each of us, whoever we are. Our part in this plan isn’t just limited to things ‘spiritual’, or things we might do on Sundays, but that it involves every aspect of our lives, from the things we pray about, to how we live as responsible global citizens.

We also ask you to pray for the staff and students of JPC. They had several people in their community pass away last term. We want them to know we are thinking of them and continue to pray for them all as they start the new term.

In your hands, O Lord, we humbly entrust our brothers and sisters. In this life you embraced them with your tender love; deliver them now from every evil and bid them eternal rest. The old order has passed away: welcome them into paradise, where there will be no sorrow, no weeping or pain, but fullness of peace and joy with your Son and the Holy Spirit forever and ever.

Blessings to you all.
Bernie Hall, Director of Religious Studies.

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PLEASE also remember in prayer those families who have lost relatives recently :
Shubh Parsad (Room 15) and family on the loss of their grandmother.
Krisha Patel (Room 4) and family on the loss of their grandfather in India.

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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

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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.

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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.

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We are seeking a musical volunteer to help run our school choir. If you have some time, musical talent and think you can help us out please contact Bernie Hall-021 258 7937 or at
We would love to hear from you!

Looking for part-time Nanny to look after 3 school age children, 2-3 times per (mid) week (from present to end November), from 3-5.30pm - and drop at activities. Call Margo 021 399689

Sports News


Thank you to all those who made it to the trial yesterday. Mrs Dinniss will send a notice home updating you today.

Tournament date is Tuesday 14th August

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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!!!

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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.

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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)

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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.

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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.

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The draw will be available on the BOP Hockey Website

Please check your game times carefully - all Grades/Pools will have different game times. If you are in the Maxi Development round you will have double headers in the first two weeks. This is so the season will end on August 18th. Please mark this in your diaries as there will be prize givings that day.

The Prize Giving for Minis will be held at 12pm on August 18th.
The Prize Giving for Maxi will be held at 11am on August 18th.

Calling U11 Hockey players in Rotorua -
If you are a keen Year 5 or 6 hockey player who wants to extend your hockey skills we have an U11 programme for 2018. Below is the fixture list. Registrations open at the start of Term 3 and close August 10th. The cost will be $45 plus the cost of a personalised hoodie.

We ask that players who register be committed to the trainings and they must be available for the tournaments.

Numbers will be limited by turf time and coach availability. If you are a coach or manager willing to help out with this programme please email or

Please go to the BOP Hockey website to register.

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)

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Tuesday & Thursday Lunchtime in the school hall

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A Special Mention

Well done Dylan on your two wins after your first ever race meet

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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