Board Talk

Board Talk

22 July 2019

It is hard to believe that we are halfway through the year. Winter has certainly landed with a blast with many cold evenings and beautiful sunny days. Your Board are keen to keep you informed about what’s happening within the school by the introduction of “Board Talk” panui.

New Board– We are pleased to announce your new board: Michele Hawe (Chairperson), Ngarepo Eparaima (Parent Rep), Lynette Walmsley (Parent Rep), Arihi Harvey (Parent Rep), Dallas Te Aonui (Parent Rep), Janice Simeon (Staff Rep) and Hinei Taute (Principal). If you would like to know what the board’s role and responsibilities are check out NZSTA - New Zealand School Trustees Association website herefor details on what they do. Remember board meetings are open to the public, so you are welcome to come along and see what we do. Alternatively, you can have a chat with any one of us on the board.

Property Update– Over the past seven years the Board has been very patient with the slow progress in relation to our school hall, Te Moemoea Pererika. Our hall was deemed a “leaky building’ and has now been reclassified by the Ministry and it is looking likely that remedial work will be done to rectify internal and external issues that were identified in 2012. It is hoped this work will start before Christmas or early 2020.

A review of our 10 Year Property Plan started earlier this year by a property consultant, funded by the Ministry, is a process in planning how we can best spend an allowance the Ministry gives us. This planning takes into account and primarily aims to ensure our buildings are maintained to a high standard. Capital work planned under this review plan is the upgrade of Korotiotio and Pohutu classrooms. The board will consider other options if the hall and classroom upgrade start at the same time. Again we hope this work will start before Christmas or early 2020.

Work completed earlier this year was the upgrade of our Memorial Swimming Pool. This project was important to our school and board because of its history to remember those former pupils who made the supreme sacrifice in World War I and II, and reduces the cost of transporting our children to public pools.

Roll Growth - Our community continues to grow, so too does our school roll which sits at 123 tamariki. To assist us in future planning please ensure that children who will attend our school in the future are pre-enrolled. We encourage you to remind your friends and neighbors to do this, even if they are not attending school for another few years. It is never too early!

Communities of Learning- The Community of Learning or ‘Kahui Ako’, is a government initiative which aims to bring educational professionals to work together to help streamline the education process within communities, i.e childcare centers to talk to Primary Schools, vice versa, primary to Intermediate, etc. Our school Kahui Ako, is called Rotorua Central CoL, there are 8 schools and 23 ECE’s in our group. The Kahui Ako collectively sets a very specific goal (achievement challenge) to work to, funding is provided by the Ministry to help achieve this goal, the CoL Lead Principal is Hinei.

Reviews- The Government is doing a huge review on Tomorrow”s Schools. Have a look at the recommendations here There are some big changes with the operation of school boards, and of intermediate and middle schools. You can have your say by clicking this link.

Staff– Our teachers continue to work hard to achieve very specific goals for our children. It is certainly not an easy job and we are very fortunate to have a team of dedicated, caring staff, and support staff when we are aware that staff are becoming difficult to find. This includes our caretaker who ensures everything is in good working order and our office staff.

Parent Involvement - I would like to thank all parents and whanau who have been involved in your child/ren’s learning, whether it is reading at home with your child, helping them with their homework, attending school activities, volunteering to help at sports events or taking them to their games and helping in the classroom. All these matter in building a solid partnership between the school and whanau for your child/s success in their learning and celebrating it. Well done parents and whanau, you are doing a great job.

Student Reporting to the Board- The most important thing at our school is students learning. At the last two board meetings, Whaea Janice, Whaea Whaiatua and Whaea Liz and Whaea Lisa shared the exciting learning taking place in their classrooms.

Purerehua Reporting - Whaea Janice and Whaea Whaiatua of Purerehua (year 2 to 4) class. Their presentation was based on the learning journey thus far for 2019. They outlined the learning needs and aspirations of the class and discussed the integration of Hangarau (technology) and Putiao (science) into their classroom learning. Looking at the students holistically underpinned much of their delivery. It was also refreshing to hear about all of the new learning, changes and achievements in Purerehua. Photos and a video of the students learning were also shared. A comment made was “the look on the children’s faces say it all”.

Korotiotio Reporting - Whaea Liz of Korotiotio (year 1 to 2) class gave an awesome presentation based on Korotiotio’s introduction to Play Based Learning (PBL)in the classroom so far this year. Liz attended a teacher’s professional development course in Palmerston North earlier this year, primarily to understand how PBL works with a focus on improving student engagement and learning. We can now identify child’s play urges and work toward implementing these wonderful aspects of play in the classroom. According to author’s Pennie Brownlee and Kimberley Crisp (2016) “Play has a critical role in unfolding human intelligences, imagination and creativity.” Liz has introduced PBL play with small sized activities to encourage students to engage in their learning such as Oral language, Reading and Writing. Thus far students are engaging with PBL in small bites, from constructing huts, role playing, retelling stories with puppets on a stick, making potions with water, sticks and glitter and a range of other similar activities. Korotiotio will continue their PBL journeyand we look forward to hearing more about our Junior school students engaging in their learning.

Pohutu Reporting - Whaea Lisa Reweti of Pōhutu Rūmaki (year 1 to 6) presented on her students progress as Visible Learners. What is visible learning? Visible learning is when teachers see learning through the eyes of our children and helps them become their own teachers. Children measure themselves and challenge their own progress. Students are able to recite and understand vision and mission statements confidently and have composed a waiata about learner dispositions and tupuna. Attached is a link related to our class dynamics. Ruma Pōhutu description

Next Meeting - Our next Board meeting is scheduled for 21 August at 5.30pm,this is a public meeting and you are welcome to attend, if you would like to raise an item please contact me or with any one of us on the board.

As a Board we are committed to the future of Whakarewarewa School and the education of our tamariki.

I hope you all enjoyed your holiday break tamariki ma and staff

Nga mihi nui

Michele Hawe

Board Chair