Newsletter No 27, 5 September 2018

Mālō e lelei (lit. congrat. on being well, the being in good health is worthy of gratitude). This week is Tongan Language Week.

We are officially into Spring now, Hooray! For me, I always get a great lift when Spring arrives. Next season, summer is not far away. Bring on the warmer weather.

Last week we hosted two teachers from St Joseph’s, Taree in New South Wales. They are experiencing extreme drought conditions in their area, and the government has had to put in some measures to help the poor farmers. The wet conditions they had here were definitely a novelty and something they had not experienced for months.

The teachers visited five Catholic Schools in Auckland before coming to Rotorua, then spent time with Brigitte and Kakano. They were very impressed with what the Kakano team are doing and felt this was the best they saw in their time in New Zealand. This week we have had teachers from seven different schools from around Rotorua visiting Kakano to observe the oral language programme. These teachers were also impressed.

The Totara Team had their speech finals on Monday. Two students from each class were selected to speak in the finals. The topic was ‘I wonder…….’. Kaitlin Pola was placed first, Harrison Roberts second and Flossy Smith and Nevan Winmill third equal. I have to say the standard of the speeches was very high this year. Kaitlin will now go through to the Rotorua Primary Schools’ Final on Monday evening. Thanks to Georgia Lovegrove and Heather Tootill for judging the final.

This Friday we are celebrating Nativity of Mary Mass at 9.00am. We really enjoy having you join us for school Masses. If you have some time we would love to see you. We are also welcoming our new families after Mass.

One of the major issues identified by the schools in our Community of Learning is the prevalence of ANXIETY amongst students in its many forms.

Paulene Walsh (John Paul College SENCO) has arranged for a speaker to share her expertise on the issue, building resilience. This talk is open to all parents who may be affected in any way by their children’s anxiety. The public lecture starts at 7.00 p.m. in the Edmund Rice Centre. A gold coin donation would be appreciated.

Students are to start Term 4 in full summer uniform. Our Uniform Shop is open Mondays (8.30-9.00am), Wednesdays (2.30-3.00pm) & Fridays (8.30-9.00am) during term time. The girls’ summer dresses are currently only available from our school uniform shop.
Summer uniform is:
Boys - Grey drill shorts and a royal blue short sleeved polo shirt.
Girls - Blue check dress.
All students need a royal blue sunhat.
Feilding Red woollen school jersey
Black sandals for footwear (no socks to be worn with sandals).

We also sell school uniform via our school website. You can order and pay online and pick up your uniform from the school reception after you have been notified by email that the uniform is ready to pick up. Hopefully it will be easier for those parents who find it difficult to get to our uniform shop.

We intend to have a working bee on the second Saturday after the holidays: November 3rd. There are a number of jobs that need to be done. I was amazed at the support we received for last year’s working bee, so I would really appreciate your support with this one too please. Children are welcome and we will have a BBQ lunch.

Next week we welcome a team from the Education Review Office. Our school hasn’t had a review for four years, so we will be welcoming their feedback. I think they will be impressed with our students’ learning.

Have a great week….

David Macmillan, Principal.

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Our condolences and prayers to the Stefadourous family (Charlotte Room 15) on the death of their great grandfather.

From our Director of Religious Studies

Tēnā koutou everyone,

Our Nativity of Mary Mass is this Friday. READ MORE HERE: We will welcome all new students and families to our school at this Mass also.


I would like to say a big Thank You to all our helpers at our school Masses. Many people help our school Masses to run smoothly:
Our priests-Father Tovio and Father Eamon, our technicians and Mr James, our readers, altar servers, our Eucharistic Ministers-Mrs Dalton, Mrs Tootill and Mr Macmillan, our piano player-Mrs Smith, Deacon Mike and the teachers who assist with welcoming new students-Mrs Todd, and the junior teachers and the wonderful Mrs Jensen who keeps our new families updated!

We appreciate you!

Social Justice Week 2018 runs from September 9-15 and will focus on disability and inclusion. The title of the resources is Enabling Communities: Everyone has a part to play. The Caritas social justice in schools promotes awareness and increases understanding of social justice issues through the lens of Catholic social teaching.

Noho ora mai,
Bernie Hall, Director of Religious Studies.

COMMUNITY SURVEY has now closed. Thank you to those who participated in the survey.


We are currently reviewing the following policies in Term 3:

  • Behaviour Management
  • Complaints
  • Board, Staff and Parents will be involved in this review.

If parents/caregivers wish to be involved in this review, please follow these instructions:

Visit the website
Enter the username (stmarysrotorua) and password (3010).
Follow the link to the relevant policy as listed.
Read the policy.
Click the Policy Review button at the top right-hand corner of the page.
Select the reviewer type "Parent".
Enter your name (optional).
Submit your ratings and comments.
If you don't have internet access, school office staff can provide you with printed copies of the policy and a review form.


PITA PIT : Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays
orders online via

FRIDAYS: Sausage Sizzle and Juicies available. $1.50 each item. Order from your classroom teacher.

PITA PIT Classroom Competition: (Term 3) results to date....a very tight competition!
Room 1 - first
Room 3 - second
Rooms 5, 17 and 13 - third

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Mandarin Speech Competition :Congratulations to the following students who participated in the Mandarin Speech Competition held on 17 August - Kris Zhang, Laris Chan, Millie Lucich and Vanessa Liang. They all spoke clearly and confidently in front of a large audience. There were 26 schools from the wider Bay of Plenty competing. Thanks also to our Mandarin Language Assistant, Eva, who prepared the students for this event.

Congratulations to the following students on their recent ICAS Spelling Results

Alan Antony Y6
Harrison Roberts Y6
Ariel Muchirahondo Y5
Harrison McLeod Y5
Emma McCowatt Y5
Lorenzo Ersando Y3

Nathan Graham Y6
Ysabella Pagaduan Y6
Francis Larkin Y5
Paul Michael Y5
Neela Stephens Y4
Alice Konyves Y3
Rosa Hingston Y5

Nyla Fulo Y6
Sahr Kortequee Y5
Tyler Graham Y3


Alan Antony Y6
Nyla Fulo Y5
Harrison Roberts Y6
Emma McCowatt Y5
Harrison McLeon Y5

Charli Parkinson Y6
Kris Zhang Y5


Online Uniform Sales:
Uniforms are available online via our website using paypal.

Change of Address/Contact Phone numbers:
For change of personal contact details : Please notify the office or email :
The school newsletter is available on Wednesday afternoons via email.

IT clubs:
Minecraft Wednesday lunchtimes with Mrs Dobson
Angels Flying Squad Friday with Mr James
Kapa Haka:
Kapa Haka meets Thursday afternoons from 2 - 2.50pm. Contact Mrs Dunkley. Families welcome to come and visit.
Pasifika Club: Meets Fridays at 11am in the school hall with Mrs Wallbank.
Homework Club: Room 15, 3-4pm Thursdays. All students/parents are welcome to attend if you are needing homework support.
Gymnastics: Tuesdays & Thursdays in hall 12.30pm to 1.15pm. See office for details.
Choir:** Meet Fridays at 11am in school hall. Years 3 - 6. Boys, we would love to see
you as well!

Library is open:
Lunchtimes 12.30 - 1pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays
After school 3pm - 3.45pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays

Sports News

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 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.

St Marys Tauranga Inter School Competition

If your child has brought a notice home regarding this trip please complete the permission form and return it to the office by the end of the week. Thank you


We are DUTY club this Saturday. Please email Catherine if you are available to help

Check on the website for your child's draw.

FINAL day of football is this Saturday 8th of September.
Grades 9, 10 and 11 you are playing in the McDonalds Junior tournament on Sat 15th of September.

All netball has now finished for the season.
Uniforms need to be handed in at the office with your child's name please.


Next games are Mon 10/09 and Fri 14/09

Miniball draw is on the website


All hockey has now finished for the season.
Uniforms need to be handed in at the office with your child's name please.


Saturday Sept 8th 1.30. Manuka Crescent. All Welcome

TERM 4 and 1 program

Wednesday year 1-5 3.30, year 5-8 4.30

Friday Year 1-6 3.30 -4.30

For further info contact Debra Dowland or 021335492

Holiday Programmes

MIGS Rotorua

Click here for the Rotorua Touch Holiday Programme

A Special Mention

Congrats to our ski team who came home with some impressive results last week.
Giant slalom senior boys (134 competitors), Sterling came 33rd, Liam 71st and Francis 76th. Junior boys; Joe came 76th and Fynn 84th.
Second day dual slalom they all did well finishing and grabbing extra points for the team with Joe and Sterling winning both their races and Francis one.
Well done team!

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Te Ariki Ellis Shield 2018 2.PNG

Congratulations to Te Ariki who is part of the rep rugby team who WON the CBOP U11's Ellis Shield. He is the youngest player in the team and has played well this season.
Well done Te Ariki!

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St Mary's is collecting oral waste - collection box outside Room 6.