Newsletter-Week 6 Term Two

Newsletter 15 31 May 2023

Principal's Message


This week is Samoan Language Week and our Pasifika Group is performing for our school on Thursday at 11.15am (for about 30 minutes). Parents are most welcome to attend the performance. Tai Waititi has organised activities for children to do in their classrooms highlighting the Samoan language.

Thank you for supporting teachers today by picking your children up early so teachers can meet to discuss their latest pay offer. I know it may have be an inconvenience to you, so again thank you.

We are now in the second half of the term; isn’t time going so quickly?

During this weekend a large number of our children were Confirmed and made their First Holy Communion. The children looked stunning and there were some very excited children and proud whanau. I think the children will always remember this occasion, as we all who have received these sacraments do.

Our Teacher Only Day is next Tuesday (6th June). Our Kahui Ako is meeting at Aquinas College with seven other Catholic Schools with some very noteworthy presenters and a number of workshops on offer. The theme is "Whāia te Iti Kahurangi - Leading Inclusive and Empowering Schools". There will be no school on this day. If you require child care for your children you can contact Maryanne Roling on 0211 215599.

It is King’s Birthday weekend this weekend so Monday is a Public Holiday.

Pentecost Mass was celebrated together as a school on Friday. It was a lovely occasion with some great singing from our children. Thanks to our DRS Lorna Dobson and to our musicians Lorrette Tiedt and Tai Waititi for coordinating the Mass. Thanks to Father Thomas for celebrating Mass for us and thanks to the parents who joined the celebration with us.

Our Chess team performed particularly well in Taupo on Friday and on Monday we hosted the Regional Chess Tournament here at St Mary’s. We had a large number of students competing in this tournament. Thanks to Mr G for organising the event. Thanks also to Brigitte Holmes and the many parents and whanau that came to help with catering and helping to run this successful event. In Taupo our teams were placed 1st and 2nd and in Rotorua, we came 2nd and 3rd. Claire Delos Santos and Albin Joseph were Top Girl and Top Boy for the tournament.

A reminder to parents of Year 6 students, if you wish to enrol your child at John Paul College, enrolments are open and can be found on the JPC website. If you need help completing this please make contact with our school office.

JPC is also hosting two open-to-view days for prospective students. They are to be held on Wednesday 31 May and Thursday 1 June from 9 am - 3 pm. Guided tours of the campus will

depart every 30 minutes from in front of the administration building. Please allow 1 hour to complete the tour.

Tofa Soifua

David Macmillan.


Director of Religious Studies

Thanks so much to everyone who attended our Pentecost Mass on Friday. The Kakano children wore flames of fire to celebrate the occasion and the singing was superb.

Last weekend I had the pleasure of attending the Masses at St Michael's and St Mary’s where our children from the Parish received the Sacraments of Confirmation and First Holy Communion. It was a delightful celebration and it was lovely to see the Churches packed with parishioners. Attending Sunday Mass where possible, will be essential to our young people's faith journey. Thanks to all our whanau for helping to guide them. We will continue to pray for you all. Have a wonderful week.

Take care, God bless.

Lorna Dobson

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Chipmunks - childcare option for Teacher Only Day

School’s Out! Chipmunks is in!

With the upcoming Teacher Only Day on the 6th June, we are here to take care of your kids! Send them to us at Chipmunks and we will keep them entertained for a day.

We will set up the movie theater, we will have art, crafts, baking and don’t forget our massive playground with our inflatable slide!

We have your kids covered for $40 per child. For an additional $10 we can provide them with morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea on the day. Booking is essential please contact Melinda on 0272051641 or email us at Bookings and payment must be made by 1 June.

If you don’t want to leave them for the day but want to bring them for a play, we have a school day special of $12.90 where you bring them in and stay while they play, you can even treat yourself to a cuppa in our on-site cafe. You don’t need to book to play when the parents stay. Just come on in!

Chess News

Our chess players have just finished competing in regional tournaments at Taupo and Rotorua and did really well.

At Taupo our two teams of 9 players finished in first and second place respectively.This qualifies us for the NZ Nationals in Auckland later in the year.

Individually Eric Yang (1st overall, Claire Delos Santos (2nd) and Alvin Biju (3rd) did exceptionally well. Both Eric and Claire finished with a picket fence , that is they won all their 7 rounds of chess.

For the Rotorua event which was held here at St Mary’s, there were over 100 children competing (40 from St Mary’s) - 68 juniors and 34 Rookies (new players).In the Junior division there were 9 schools and 10 teams of which we had 3. A really good test for our chess players. The day went really well in spite of the wet day which meant children weren't able to burn off excess energy outside.

Our teams finished 2nd (½ pt behind Lynmore), 3rd and 7th.

Individually Alvin Biju finished first overall and Claire Delos Santos was top girl (again).

Overall we had around 17 children playing in their first ever chess tournament which was so exciting. Elva Lin, Kieran Taylor, Lydia Hardman, Emily Tane and Iquita Valenzuela did particularly well, winning 4 or more games.This is no mean feat for your first tournament.

Also it was great to have a team from St Michael’s competing with some of my ex pupils playing.

On the day, thanks to parent support, we ran a sausage sizzle and cake stall to raise funds for our Chess Club. We made approx $400 (Wow) which will go towards subsidising our future entries into tournaments and towards competing in the NZ Nationals.

Keep up the good work! Mr G.

Dental Fluoride treatment for students

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Eastside Buses

To all schools using Eastside buses-

Waka Kotahi has advised to expect delays of up to 30 minutes for up to four months at the SH30/33 junction due to the construction of a roundabout:

This means, delays are to be expected on the following routes:

  • D040605 (05/Maniatutu).
  • D040612 (12/Lake Rotoma).
  • D040617 (17/Tikitere).
  • D040623 (23/Lake Rotoma School).

GO BUSES will be monitoring the delays and will try to report to the school if possible during this 4 month period. It seems we will just have to be patient.

Euan Cameron - Depot Manager.

Bus Request

St Mary's has a new student from the Phillipines, aged 8 years, who only arrived in the country on 23 April. She is living in Pohutakawa Drive, Owhata. They do not own a private motor vehicle. She has been enrolled to travel on the bus to and from school but she is afraid of riding in the bus.

Is there any family in that area who could accommodate a pick up and drop off for this little girl.

This would only be a temporary measure as the family are working on getting a vehicle and the mother would then be able to do the transporting.

Please contact Shanelle in the office if you think you may be of service. Thank you.

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Please keep the 24th of June in your diary as this is our next Football Club Duty day.

Please remember any team from grade 9 up needs to email in their score, so it can be entered into Comet.


We are on duty on the 17th of June. Please email or call the office to see where you can lend a hand.


Monday lunchtime is gymnastics fun gym for all and Thursday afterschool is gymnastics for years 3 -6 who are interested in doing competitions. If interested in the Thursday after school gymnastics there is an online form to fill out. Please see our website under sports.


Lakeview Golf fun Competition is on the 21st of June. Registrations close on the 9th of June. See details on our website under sports.


Students in Years 4-6 have been rehearsing with Mrs Trask a performance piece depicting Maori stories from our local area. Students from these classes will perform in a school performance AND they also have the opportunity to perform as part of ShowQuest. We can only take 100 students from the seven classes. There will be a fee of $25 per student.

As this years' ShowQuest is in Rotorua, all parents /caregivers will be responsible for getting their child/children to the day event and picking them up at the completion of the evening show.

To register your child for ShowQuest please head to our website and under sports you will find all the information and links.

Please send any team photos through to

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