Newsletter 2 Term 3

Onerahi School 24 September 2021

Te Karere o te Tumuaki/Principal's Message

Kia ora e te whānau,

Coming to the end of Term 3, I would like to thank everybody for the response to the Covid Lockdown - 2021 edition - that was announced so suddenly and to the subsequent changes of levels that saw us all return at level 2. We very much appreciate everyone's cooperation with the requirements we have had to put in place for Delta level 2. The children have settled back in really well and have engaged in their learning at school with enthusiasm.

Sadly, we farewell Donna Broughton our LSC at the end of term and thank her immensely for the work she has done at Onerahi Primary over the past 14 years. We wish her, and her family, all the very best for their next adventure.

We also wish Maraea Durie all the very best with the birth of her 2nd child. She will be taking leave from the end of this term.

We will do proper introductions next term, however we are excited to let you know that Emma Boustead will be finishing the year for Room 8 and Mrs Karen Johnsen will be taking on the role of Learning Support Coordinator.

Next term we also welcome a second Deputy Principal to our team, Grace Williams. All these new staff are excited to be joining the whanau at Onerahi School.

There will be a powhiri for the new staff and students on Monday the 18th of October from 9:30, weather permitting. If the weather is not in our favour there will be a much smaller mihi whakatau in the library.

Enjoy the upcoming holidays and we look forward to a fabulous Term 4.

Nga Manaakitanga

AnnMaree MacGregor


Lockdown Learning

Although lockdown snuck up on us fast, with little warning, it was great to see so many staff and students engaged with online learning. There were some fantastic things created, and tasks that looked not only educational but a lot of fun! From cooking lessons, to music, amazing feats of engineering and design, physical activity and chances to really brush up on some numeracy and literacy skills. We would like to thank our whanau for their support of the school and their students' learning during this time.

Te Wiki o Te Reo Maori

OPS celebrated Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori in a number of different ways this year. We had Kahoot quizzes to identify where our strengths in Te Reo Māori lie. The school participated in the nationwide 10 mins of Te Reo Māori Tuesday the 14th at 12pm by gathering on the blue courts and raising their voices in several waiata. Classes learned many new kupu (words) and a new whakatauki (proverb). And check out Oscar Woolford's great translation of his account of lockdown. Tino pai tō mahi Oscar!

Water Safety/Wai Haumaru in Term 4

We have decided to once again open our school pool in term 4, with a focus on Water Safety. Students will learn skills based on how to manage themselves in and around water. We will confirm a date for this to begin, closer to the start time. The classes will be using the pool on a rostered basis during the week and will need to bring along named togs, towels and (if preferred) goggles on their scheduled days.

Akonga/Students Corner

Recently we challenged our tamariki to write an account of their time spent in lockdown. Many wonderful entries were submitted and we would love to share one of these with you here. Thank you to Amelie Blackburn for your lovely poem (see pic left) and to Loretta Lambly, both of Ruma Rima fame, for your account of the Bike Ride below.


It was supposed to be a normal Wednesday, it was supposed to be a normal bike ride. Fun and enjoyable. IT WAS NOT!!!!! Before I knew it we were once again in lockdown!

There was no school, no sleepovers, no fun. AKA BORING!!!!! So far I had mostly spent my lockdown feeling bored and doing learning when I could. My brother and I had been begging my parents all day to go for a bike ride. Now we finally were going on one but somehow it felt wrong. The bike ride started normally with my brother complaining. When we finally got to the garden we started exploring. The garden was quite a pretty place with many plants and greenery. So far it was going well until... It started raining!!! And not a nice rain like the type when you stick your tongue out and wait for rain drops to fall on it. It was a hard rain, a wet rain, a cold rain, A NASTY RAIN. Quickly we ran under the covering at the nearby church. After five minutes the rain stopped and we decided it was time to go. Sure the rain had stopped but the cold HAD NOT!!! After two minutes my hands were numb and the bitter wind was blowing so hard in my face that at some parts of the journey home I had to hop off my bike because the wind was pushing me back! My brother and Father were far ahead of me and my Mother (my brother had started finding it hard to breath so got help from my father to keep him going) way before it REALLY got cold. My hands were so cold that it hurt to open them. The bike ride home was a long one but once I got home and put my hands near the warm fire I felt relieved I had finally finished the bike ride. In some ways this was like lockdown - supposed to be normal but didn’t turn out right but like most times when you finish a journey you always learn something new. – Loretta Lambly

Kei hea koutou inaianei/ Where are they now?

This is the section of our school newsletter, sharing stories from our past students who have reflected on their time at OPS and how it has impacted their journey through life. After a bit of a search we have found our 2nd candidate. We thought you might enjoy this account from Sharlene Dawson of Kind Hands.

Kia ora koutou,

My name is Sharlene Clements I attended Onerahi Primary school 42 years ago!! I remember my first day very well as I fell over and ended up cutting my chin and going home early! However, this didn’t deter my love for school. I had some wonderful teachers throughout my time at the school and I was also lucky enough to make true friends. These friendships that I made that started at Onerahi Primary go back 40 years, I often think how lucky I am to still have made such special friends from such a young age. We all share the same September birthdays, still catch up whenever we can and they remain an inspiration in my life.

Some of my other memories from when I attended Onerahi Primary school was the rope…... we used to ‘catch’ or ‘hold’ the rope to walk part of the way home. This was to keep us safe when we were young. We would all hold the rope on a knot in a line and walk past the Onerahi shops. Another memory I have is the Gala Day on the last day of the year. This was huge. We had the morning of stalls, toffee apples, bric a brac, guess the lollies in the jar etc then in the afternoon it was athletics sports. Everyone loved these events, parents and children – I never enjoyed the sack races however! Another highlight was buying lunch that came from outside and it was a real treat for many children to buy your lunch on occasions like your birthday. It usually consisted of a pie, donut, and burger rings! We used to go to the incinerator afterwards and shrink the burger ring packet down in the heat – this is what kids these days call ‘shrinky dinkys’, we thought they were super cool!

Where am I now? I finished school in the 7th Form and went into nursing which I love. I specialised in paediatric nursing and have been a nurse for over 25 years! Three years ago, I decided to use all of my skills to open ‘Kindhands’ which was set up to give families of children with medical needs and or a disability a break in a home-like home environment. Kindhands now offers Early childhood education as well as respite care and more recently I trained to become an early childhood teacher. My other accomplishment is being a mum to my three children.

Words of advice “you can be ANYTHING you want to be”! “Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, I believe in you”.

Nga mihi nui

Sharlene Clements

Kirsty's Corner

Kia ora,

Just wanted to give you all a heads up, that we will once again be running book week and the book character parade next term. Perhaps you could start thinking about your costume during the school holidays?

It was great to see a number of new Te Reo Māori translated and created titles utilised so well during Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori. We are building a nice collection of books in Te Reo Māori along with a good range of NZ history, Myths and Legends and non fiction stories. Come and check them out!

Kirsty Oliver

School Librarian and Resource Co-Ordinator

Year 7 Enrolments

Many of our Year 6 parents have already begun the enrolment process for their Year 6 tamariki for next year. There are a number of options for students to transition to for their intermediate years in the Whangarei Area.

We have been given an amended enrolment timeline from Whangarei Intermediate, which has been adjusted due to Lockdown and this is as follows:

WIS Parent Information Hui, cancelled due to Covid. August 24. See our website, to view a recorded version.

Student enrolments completed online - Deadline is October 22.

Friday 20 & 27 November WIS Orientation Mornings Induction day. Pupils enrolled should attend. The proposed day is 03 December for Onerahi School.

● The induction day will include several activities designed to demonstrate learning activities that take place at WIS. ● Each session should be 2.5 hours at WIS. ● Buses will be provided for Onerahi.

School Photos Update

Keycodes have come out for your tamariki's individual and class photos. These can now be ordered online. If you complete the order by the 10th of October, they can be delivered for free to the school in term 4.

On the lookout...

With term 4 rapidly approaching and end of year planning sneaking up on us, could we please ask all families whose tamariki received a trophy last year, to start looking for these trophies, and return them early in term 4. We need these back sooner, rather than later, as its a bit of a process to prepare them for this year's recipients and there is a deadline we need to meet. Many thanks.


We have had children in Room 13 working with Tahi NZ to ensure we still have a good supply of 2021 honey cleverly made by the bees in our hives. Now is a great time to buy! Still a bargain at only $5 a jar, available at the school office. Cash only.

Upcoming Events

  • Tuesday 28th September - Rm 3 Hatea Loop ride
  • Wednesday 29th September - Rm 31 Waimahanga Challenge
  • Friday 1 October - Last day of Term 3
  • Monday 18 October - First day of Term 4
  • Monday 18 October - Powhiri to welcome new staff and students
  • Monday 25 October - Labour Day
  • Thursday 18-Thursday 25 November - Scholastic Book Fair
  • Friday 9 December - Te Whanga Festival
  • Friday 17 December - Final day of Term 4

Accord Teacher Only Days 2022

The remaining three days will be held in 2022 on Thursday 03 and Friday 04 February (Students will start school on Tuesday 08 February after Waitangi day), and on Thursday the 23rd of June, prior to the national Matariki holiday.



The weather is slowly warming up but can still be unpredictable and it is still a good idea for children to bring raincoats and a change of clothes along to school. A reminder to all parents also that in Term 1 and Term 4, hats are compulsory while our tamariki are outside. We would like all of these items to be clearly named so they can be returned to your children should they be left behind. Each term we do a last call for found property to be claimed or it is donated.


School gates open 8:15am (in Alert Level 2, this is 8:30am)

School begins 9.00am

1st Play Break 11:00-11:30am

2nd Play Break 1:30-2:00pm

School finishes 3.00pm

School gates close 3:15pm

There are two eating breaks within the day, taken at times that suit each class. Please ask your child's teacher when their times are.


Medication: If your child requires medication be brought to or kept at school, please be aware that due to health and safety concerns, this must be kept secure in the school sick bay. It is not to be kept in children’s schoolbags during the day. This is to protect the safety of not only the child requiring the medication but also all other students. All medication requires an accompanying permission/approval form signed by their parent or caregiver. This includes epi-pens for allergy management, inhalers for asthma or any other medication your child requires on a short-term or as needed basis.

Community Notices

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