Newsletter Week Three Term Three

St Claudine Thevenet 12 August 2022

A message from the Acting Principal

Kia ora Whanau,

I hope that you and your whanau have been keeping warm and well over the past few wintery weeks. There haven’t been many opportunities to get outdoors but despite this it has been great to see the Totara Hub starting to prepare our garden boxes, some outdoor PE dance sessions happening across the school, Rata learning in the outdoor classroom and students being able to get outside from time to time at break.

Our bike safety and scooter training was all set to go for Week 3 but unfortunately the wet weather has meant that we have had to postpone quite a few sessions. We are looking forward to some clear skies so we can be outdoors long enough to complete our bike and scooter sessions.

We have some new people in our school community so I would like to extend a warm welcome to these new staff members. Welcome to our new support staff member, Brenda McCormick, is settling into the Hinau Hub. Our new caretaker, Rob Spinks, is doing a great job with the upkeep of our property. We are also pleased to welcome back Miss Amela Nikolao who is teaching in Totara Toru on Mondays and Fridays, while back in Aotearoa.

Unfortunately, we are finding that there are quite a few students arriving late to school. Arriving at school on time enables students to interact with friends and prepare themselves for the day, it lessens disruption to learning in the classroom and ensures that all students have the opportunity to start with daily prayer together. It is also important that students arrive on time to school as our formal structured literacy learning is timetabled in all classes to begin at 9am. Your support with this would be appreciated.

We encourage students to demonstrate a sense of pride by wearing their correct school uniform every day. This includes having long hair tied back with a plain black or navy hair tie and no extra jewellery, nail polish or track pants please. Students in the Rimu, Hinau and Totara hubs are required to wear their PE uniform when participating in Fitness and skills sessions. Rimu and Hinau Hubs have PE every Tuesday and Thursday and Totara have PE every Tuesday and Friday. Rata Hub are not required to wear a PE uniform. Thank you for supporting us with these expectations.

On Monday we had school photos taken. All students and staff who were present on the day had their individual photo taken. There will be an opportunity for you to order individual photos and a class photo but due to covid restrictions and rules around mask wearing these may look a little different this year.

I know that many of our students have been looking forward to the Touch season and tournament. We are working behind the scenes to get this up and running for our students. If you would like your child/children to participate you will need to register your interest on our google form available on Facebook and in this newsletter. Students will need to be registered by Monday 22nd August so we can have teams ready to register with Total Touch. The fees for touch are $22.00 per player which need to be paid by Friday 23rd September. Each team also requires a manager so if you are keen please let us know. A school notice has been sent out with more details so please check your child’s bag or let us know if you have not received this.

Ngā mihi,

Sandra Page

Acting Principal


Every three years all State and State Integrated schools in our country hold elections for their School Boards. Catholic Schools which are State Integrated where the Boards have five governance responsibilities;

1. Works toward every student reaching their highest possible standard in student achievement

2. is the employer of all staff in the school

3. sets the school's strategic direction

4. is responsible for oversight of the management of personnel, curriculum, property, finance and administration

5. Ensures that Catholic Character underpins all key responsibilities.

On our current Board we have Jo Fenika, Sarah Ricketts (Proprietors Appointee), Ayen Santillan, Attila Va’a, Georgiana Vena - Aiomata, Maria Tali, Tony Harrington – (Proprietors Appointee & Presiding Member), Principal – Dr. Sue Jury, Staff Rep - Leeanne Neville and Board Secretary – Maria Ashkettle.

Catholic Primary School Boards are made up of a set number of parent representatives, Proprietors Appointees, the Principal and a School Staff representative.

Sarah Ricketts has served on the current Board as a Proprietor’s Appointee for close to 9 years with her term ending at the September 22nd election. On behalf of our School community thank you Sarah for your service and contribution.

What committment is required from Board Members.

Our School Board meets twice a term currently on Monday evenings at School where our meeting agenda helps guide our decision making about our Board’s key responsibilities. The Presiding Member also meets regularly with the Principal outside the term meetings. There are sometimes other Board related meetings that members will attend throughout the course of the year.

Of strategic and vital importance for the new School Board after the election will be the strengthening of the School Hall which has not been safe to use since the Christchurch earthquakes more than 10 years ago. Many of you will be aware that the hall is owned by our local Parish/ the Wellington Archdiocese and the only viable best cost option is for the hall to be restrengthened. Getting a firm committment from the Parish/Wellington Archdiocese to pay for the strengthening costs will be a key priority for the new Board.

What sort of skills do board members need?

Every member brings their own unique set of skills and life experiences to the Board. As a member of a Catholic School Board, it is essential that every member has an understanding of or a willingness to learn about Catholic Character and how it underpins all governance as well as school wide actions.

Catholic Character is the framework within which the whole school curriculum in any Catholic School is delivered. It is essential to everything that takes place in the school, or on behalf of the school and its community. When it is lived day to day it provides a culture of hope, inspiration and service for all members of any Catholic School community.

Other skills of value are the quality of being able to work in a team and having good communication skills. On our School Board we have key governance responsibilities where we work in partnership with our Principal to deliver on and achieve our governance outcomes.

Election timeline and process.

Our election date is the 22nd September of which there are two main parts.

In the lead up to the election parents/caregivers of children on the school roll will first receive in the post a nomination form with instructions on the number of available parent representatives being sought for the St Claudine Thevenet Primary School Board. Once complete, send it back to your returning officer by the date specified on your form.

Then by at least 28 days prior to the election eligible voters will receive in the post their voting papers and candidate profiles. There will be instructions to follow. If you have not received your papers, please get in touch with the main office at our school.

Once the election is over.

You can find out about the newly elected school board members in the school newsletter and/or website.


For weeks 3 and 4 of this term our faith focus with students is based around the theme of Curiosity. So what do we want our students to know and understand about curiosity?

Curiosity is by definition about being interested in learning about people or things around you. It is the desire to know the story or to know the details; it is the desire to know the truth. When our student’s curiosity is fostered they want to explore things, build onto their knowledge, ask questions and come up with answers or find solutions. This aspect of curiosity lends itself well to our Term 3 connected focus ‘From Little Wonders Grow Mighty Ideas.’

Alongside this, our Catholic teachings and RE programme are also about encouraging our students to be curious about God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, the Church, Faith, their families, friends, country, the world they live in, their rights and responsibilities, Social Justice and so much more. When their curiosity is steeped in faith they become stronger and richer members of our wider community and come to know their own identity through God’s Truth.

Wendy Wilson (DRS)

Big picture

Sacramental Programme

Due to the rising number of covid cases, the Parish have decided to postpone the sacramental programme until 2023. Lookout for information regarding this during term one of next year.


In connected learning we have been exploring what an engineer is and how they work. We have been exploring science concepts of force, wind, and gravity. We have been designing and building our creations and testing how they work and how we can make improvements. Some of us explored wind and kites. We learnt that wind goes underneath the kite and creates lift to make the kite fly. We learnt that the bigger our kite was, the better it would fly. Some of us explored paper planes and the forces at play when they fly.

“A plane needs wings to fly” - Josdan.

“Gravity goes down - we need it so the plane can come down at the end” - Shaun.

“Planes need lift. It’s a force like star wars force. It moves stuff up to the sky without touching it. You can’t even see it!” - Finn


Across the school in Mathematics, we have been learning about Fractions. In Rata, we know that if pieces are equal they are a fraction. If they are not equal it’s not fair and it can’t be a fraction. We can share a set of objects in half using materials. Our favourite way to practise our fractions is using playdough. We create cakes, shapes and pizzas and cut them into fractions. What Fractions do you see at home? Can you use fractions when you bake?

'Epetoma o te reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani

Last week was Cook Islands language week - and we celebrated the language of students in our Rata whanau and wider school. We loved learning new songs, listening to stories and learning more about the language and culture. Check out one of the songs started to learn - My God Loves Me

My God Loves Me (Cook Islands Māori)

Outdoor classroom

Rata Hub is blessed to have the outdoor learning space. It is a fantastic space to build our team skills of cooperation, negotiation and turn taking. Some of the things we love to do outside are -

Sandpit - we dig and build we are building our spacial awareness, developing our problem solving skills and gross motor skills.

Dramatic play - when we play shops or play with the dolls house we learn about positive interactions with others.

Construction - we love to build in the rata whanau! We use lego, duplo, blocks and giant jenga to make some awesome creations. This helps us to problem solve, use our creativity and persevere when our creations fall short.

Water table - when we explore the water tray we learn about how we can manipulate water. We learn about volume, capacity, pumps, pouring and measuring too.

There is so much learning to be had in the outside classroom.

Total Touch Summer Tournament

Kia ora Parents and Caregivers,

Presently we are working to get Touch up and running for our students. If you would like your child/children to participate you need to register their interest on our google form available on Facebook and in our newsletter. Students need to be registered by Monday 22nd August so we can have teams ready to register with Total Touch.

The fees for touch are $22.00 per player which need to be paid by Friday 23rd September. All students are required to wear a yellow PE top and black shorts. These tops are available from our school uniform shop and can be ordered through our school website.

Times & Dates

Year 1-6 teams

Hutt Park season dates - 28th October to 9th December (6 weeks- 1 week break on 18th November). These teams will play on Friday nights from 3.30pm.

Year 7-8

Fraser Park season dates - 27th October - 1st December (6 weeks)

These teams play Thursday nights from 6pm.

It is vital to have whanau support to enable all teams to be involved. Each team needs to have a coach/manager. This person needs to be available for each game and support the team to be organised and during games. This may involve ensuring the team is organised and ready at the correct field, substituting team members, supporting younger players on the field eg. running in the right direction, keeping score if required and having lots of fun with the children and community. The key requirement of this role is being available for games and encouraging our students to participate and have a great time.

Please note that Total Touch has informed us that there will be no official scoreboards for Year 1/2 or Year 3/4 this year. At these levels the focus is on fundamentals, participation and fun.

Touch has been a hugely successful tournament for us in the past and we are looking forward to seeing our students and whanau representing our school with pride.

Nut Allergies

We have a range of students (particularly juniors) who have allergies to all nuts and nut products including nutella. We ask that you do not send these to school with your child/children. These can be kept at home for afternoon tea. Thank you for keeping our tamariki safe.

Term dates 2022

Term One - Wednesday 2 February- Thursday 14 April 2.40pm

Term Two- Monday 2 May- Friday 8 July 2.40pm

Term Three- Monday 25 July- Friday 30 September 2.40pm

Friday 16 September TEACHER ONLY DAY- PLD

Term Four- Monday 17 October- Thursday 15 December 12.30pm