Issue 11 - 22 August 2022



E ngā reo, e ngā mana, rau rangatira mā, ngā matā waka, tēnei te mihi nui atu ki ā koutou katoa. Ko te wawata me te tumanako ka noho ora mai koutou katoa.

Identity and belonging

Identity and belonging are integral to engagement in school and with life. For our young people to feel that they have their identity valued in school is important, as when they see themselves in the learning they do and their passions and interests available in the classroom, curriculum and wider school we know that our students will belong. When our young people have a connection with what happens in their education we know they are more likely to engage in school.

We encourage identity and belonging by listening to our young people and their whānau about what happens for them at WHS, what their experience is like as a learner and what their experience is like at school. We encourage identity and belonging by striving for quality teaching and learning where teachers adapt their practices based on solid research and feedback from their students.

We encourage identity and belonging by ensuring Māori culture is represented and valued in our school and in our classrooms. Strengthening and supporting Te Aka Maatua will strengthen ALL our school in our understanding of Te Ao Māori and Ngāti Awatanga.

We encourage identity and belonging by listening and learning from students' curriculum experiences to build better programs that engage and inspire them, making sure they have pathways that help them get to University, tertiary study or into the workforce. Our upcoming subject selection evening on Wednesday 24 August will expose students to the 120+ senior subjects they can choose from. This will help them make great decisions for their subjects for 2023 and these will be shared and discussed at the Mentor Interviews on 7 and 8 September.

We encourage belonging and identity by enabling our students to have opportunities and experiences that often sit outside the curriculum. Encouraging participation in Sports from badminton to surfing, sailing to soccer (Football) and the 30+ sports in between means that students are able to play in a range of teams and events that connect to their strengths and interests is invaluable. We have over 500 students engaged in Sports in 2022.

We encourage identity and belonging through events like the recent Arts Festival which included performances and presentations from over 100 students. The opportunity for students to express their interests and passions is so powerful. We were lucky to have over 1000 members of the community see our amazing show. The opportunity to have our teachers make this happen is testament to the quality of our teaching staff and another example that when our teachers (who are learners too), are passionate about their work then great things happen for our young people at our school.

Martyn Knapton



Kia ora kōutou

Kia whakatane au I ahau has been our motto for 100 years. As a BOT we have been exploring what this actually means for our school and our students over the past months while writing our strategic plan. Our strategy defines who we are, what our values are and what we want to achieve.

My question for everyone involved with our school is what does kia whakatane au i ahau mean for you.

The essence of this statement is conveyed in Māori by the famous statement attributed to Wairaka, daughter of Toroa the chief of the ancestral Mataatua canoe, according to Ngāti Awa tradition. Women were not permitted to paddle the canoe under normal circumstances but rather than see the waka fall to the fate of the river’s current and rocky outcrops, Wairaka called out “Kia Whakatane Au I Ahau”, which translates as “I will act as a man”. She manoeuvred the canoe back to shore, therefore diverting a potential tragedy. Her famous saying has been the school’s motto from its beginning and is now used to encapsulate the qualities of leadership, determination, achievement and success to which the vision alludes.

Drawing on this story I believe we want our students to be leaders of themselves, being brave, resourceful, proud, healthy and make good decisions. Represent themselves, family, our school, our town and our country. These are just some of my ideas, you may draw others from this whakatauki. Kia whakatane au I ahau.

The BOT has a vision for Whakatane High School to continually improve, to be one of the best schools in New Zealand. My question here is what does one of the best schools look like? What indicators would we use? Attendance, achievement, wellbeing, academic scholarships, literacy, numeracy, critical thinking skills, data about what our students do after school? I am excited about bringing more thoughts to this concept and welcome feedback from the community via the Principal.

We are always looking for ways to help all our students reach their potential. We meet regularly with our HOD’s and leaders to find out what is happening in the school. We are happy that we see initiatives all the time to raise achievement, excellence and equity. We were excited by the idea of a Construction class in 2023 that will build an entire house on the school grounds that will, when finished, be sold to Kainga Ora. Let's hope we see more in this space soon.

Congratulations to all the staff, students and parents involved in the arts festival. It is always amazing to watch our young people display their many talents.

BOT Chair

Paul Julian

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Voting is open for Parent Representatives on the Board of Trustees. We have 14 wonderful nominees for five positions. All eligible voters should have received their voting pack in the mail. If you haven't received it, please contact the Returning Officer at

Voting closes 7 September 2022.

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Senior Subject Evening

We invite current Year 10-12 students and their families to a Subject Information Evening from 6-7pm on Wednesday 24 August.

We will start with some short presentations at 6pm - Year 10 students will be in the hall and Year 11-12 students are to meet in the Library.

After these presentations you have the opportunity to speak with specific subject teachers and find information to help you make your subject selections for 2023.

Arts Festival success

The Arts Festival this week was a great success. It was lively, colourful, moving and entertaining. We were proud to bring together Kapa Haka, performing arts, drama, music, art and film to create such a fun showcase of our student talent and staff dedication.

We want to thank everyone who made it happen, especially the staff who worked tirelessly rehearsing their groups, preparing displays and facilitating the shows themselves. We were expertly supported by the Whakatane Theatre and our students who ran the technical aspects of the show. We look forward to many more occasions of this kind in the future, including next years' musical, "Little Shop of Horrors".

Adventure Racing

The school had a big week two weeks ago when the Junior Get2Go team went to the Regional Finals. This event leads to a week on Great Barrier Island which students have said in the past, is the best week of their lives.

The Get2Go regional comprises four disciplines; rock climbing, biking, orienteering and kayaking. We were in the same group as Trident and John Paul College which we knew was going to be tough.

The first event was the climbing. The team did well in this but had no idea where they had come so we then moved onto our strong discipline - the water event. The team pushed hard here and won by a solid margin. A great boost as we then went to the biking which we knew Trident would be very strong at. The teams do laps of a track and we were pretty sure that we had just about matched Trident so we were super pleased about this one. The final event was the orienteering which saw the teams running around the back of the Toi Ohomai Polytech collecting checkpoints as they went. There were 30 to collect and the four boys cleared the course with the girls collecting 27. This was a superb result which led us to winning the regional and taking the BOP title and with it a trip to Great Barrier Island in December. This is only our second win so we are so excited to be going again.

Now the hard work begins with training and fundraising for the team of Ashlyn Bennett, Ben Peat, Finn Jones, Jai Julian, Lily Isaac, Monique Prasad, Sam Littlejohn and Zoe Giles.

If there is any business out there that would love to sponsor one of the students please get in touch with me at

We also had a B team(Yr 9) that did really well to come 6th out of 24 teams so we hope for great things next year.

Following that we took 4 teams to Whangamata to race in the 6hr and 12 hr races.

A 2.30am start for the Seniors was hard work but they loved every minute (at least I think they did). Navigating in the dark, biking long roads and running around the bush, and kayaking to an island all for the love of the outdoors. The boys just pipped the girls in points but the girls won the Open 4 person woman's division which was awesome.

Our two Junior teams had a more respectable start time of 8.30am. They spent 6 hours out doing much of the same and all had a great time. The team of Ben Peat, Jai Julian, Monique Prasad and Zoe Giles took out the school event with our second team coming in 3rd.

Thanks go out to Craig and Lani Julian and Jenny Jones for getting the students there and looking after them over the weekend.

Sports Leadership

It was fantastic to see so many WHS students giving back to the community, volunteering their time to help out at the EBOP Primary 7s tournament. The students helped referee rugby, football and netball at four different venues.


It was Junior finals night for the Whakatane basketball competition.

The WHS Junior girls won by default and so took 3rd place and the bronze for the Junior Girls division.

The WHS Junior Boys B took on Te Wharekura o Ruatoki Junior Boys in their final game of the season. The WHS Boys came away with a close 29-28 win.

The WHS Junior A boys were up against Trident in the Junior Boys final. The WHS boys played well and were unlucky to go down 58-111 to take the silver medal in the competition. Coach Mr Jarrod Braddock said the boys were an awesome team to coach this year as they are all high quality people. I am proud of what they were able to produce on the court and even prouder of the way they carried themselves while wearing our crest.

Congratulations also to Te Tokatumoana McGarvey and Te Mauri Stevenson for being named in the All Star team. Many thanks to Mr Braddock for his time and commitment with coaching these teams. Senior teams will be in action next Monday night for their finals.


It was the Seniors turn on Wednesday to attend the BOP SS Senior badminton finals. WHS sent four teams to the BOP finals - 1x Boys and 3x Girls. Some close games were had especially for the number 1 Boys and Girls teams who had a tough day playing in the top division. Final results were -

Division 3 Girls

1st - Aria Gibson, Molly O’Leary, Kaitlyn Hands & Jorja Fenwick

3rd - Isabel Lambert, Fifi Portsmouth, Macy Haddock & Kaitlyn Burke

Division 1 Girls

5th - Lauranze Juan, Lara Longney, Catelyn Santos & Mackenzie Reid

Division 1 Boys

4th - Ryan Schwass, Deepak Joshi, James Elliffe & Xavier Reid

Special thanks again to parent helper Mr Reid for driving and helping out on the day. Congratulations to all players, well done.


The WHS 1st XI Boys football team played Trident High School 1st XI on Saturday 13th August.

Coach Sam Robinson said it was a fantastic game between two teams that were both up for it. WHS gained the lead early and won the first half but were lucky to stay in when their fitness gave out and Trident came out swinging in the 2nd. Trident dominated the 2nd half in this evenly contested bout but were unable to break down a strong WHS defensive effort. The goal scorer for WHS was Joshua Allison and Levi Williams scored Trident's goal.


A number of Junior girls have jumped at the chance to get started on volleyball training. Junior girls volleyball skills training sessions are running every Sunday in the school gym. These sessions are overseen by Mrs McKane with a number of Senior girls also helping out with the sessions. Any Junior girl interested in playing volleyball this year is welcome to attend - Sundays 3pm to 5pm in the school gym.


On Saturday 13th August, our girls played Gisborne Girls in a friendly game to prepare for tournament week. They had a slow start to the game to fall behind 1-0 after leaving an attacker free in the circle. They soon hit back with a good team goal to Zoe Giles. Gisborne then scored another goal from a deflection to lead 2-1. The WHS team went hard in their attempt to find an equaliser but couldn't get another goal despite coming close.

The teams also practised their eight-second shootouts, Chloee Munn made some great saves for WHS as they won 2-1.

The girls also played their last round robin game in the Whakatane Womens League, beating Waiohau 4-0.

You watch a replay of the game here -


The WHS netball teams had a busy few days recently. On Friday 12th, the Senior Prem and Senior Prem reserve team along with the Junior Prem team all travelled across to Tauranga to play the last of their pool games. Due to girls being away on the Ski trip as well as sickness and injury, the Senior Prem team was down on numbers. The girls started well in their game against Aquinas, however as the match went on, WHS struggled to keep up with the Aquinas team going down 32-52.

The Senior Prem reserve team took on the girls from Otumoetai College in the OTC Junior 1 team. The WHS team went down to the Otumoetai team 39-46.

The Junior Prem team also took on an Otumoetai team, OTC Prem 2. The WHS Junior prem team were too strong for the Otumoetai team taking the win 51 - 25.

On Saturday, the girls were in action again in the Whakatane competition finals. The Senior Prem reserve team went down to Trident Prem 3, 27-47 to finish as runners up in the Tupanuku B division.

The WHS Junior Prem reserved team played Trident Prem 4 in the play off for 5th & 6th. The WHS girls took the win 37-20 to finish 5th in the Hiwa-i-te-rangi C1 division.

Finally, huge congratulations to the WHS Junior Kowhai team who played TWTOP Ravens in their final. The girls came away with the win to be Champions in the Collegiate Grade 3 division.

Big Congratulations also to the Junior Prem team who played Opotiki College Junior girls. The WHS girls came away with the win to take the trophy in the Hiwa-i-te-rangi C1 division.

The Senior Prem team then played in a Tauranga based tournament on Sunday in preparation for tournament week taking place in Auckland later this month. The team had mixed results with wins over Otorohanga College A and OTC Prem 1, and close losses to Tauhara Open A, TNT Prems andWHHS Senior Prems.

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We look forward to welcoming all Year 8 students and their families to our Open Day and Evening on 13 September. Please contact your child's current school for information on when they will be visiting during the Open Day. For the Open Evening, we ask that you arrive at 5.30pm ready for a 5.45pm start. Please ensure you follow our Facebook event to keep up to date with enrolment information:

We look forward to seeing you there!

Learning Recognition Credits in 2022

To provide some relief due to extended periods off school, this year, students will be entitled to 1 Learning Recognition Credit (LRC) for every 5 credits earned through assessment, up to a maximum of:

  • NCEA Level 1 - maximum of 10 LRCs
  • NCEA Level 2 - maximum of 8 LRCs
  • NCEA Level 3 - maximum of 8 LRCs

To receive a Certificate Endorsement, students will need 46 credits at Merit or Excellence level, instead of the usual 50.

To be awarded University Entrance, students will need 14 credits in each of two UE Approved Subjects, and 12 credits in a third UE Approved Subject (they will also need to attain NCEA Level 3 and meet the regular literacy and numeracy requirements).

The submission dates for some have also been moved back one week (from Weds 26th Oct - to Weds 2nd Nov) this provides some relief but avoids overlap with end of year examinations.

This will apply to the following subjects:

• Technology (NCEA Levels 1-3 and NZ Scholarship)

• Design and Visual Communication (NCEA Levels 1-3 and NZ Scholarship)

• Education for Sustainability (NCEA Level 3)

• Dance (NZ Scholarship)

• Music (NZ Scholarship)

• Health and Physical Education (NZ Scholarship)

The dates for Visual Arts and the Digital Technologies and Hangarau Matihiko Common Assessment Task (DCAT) are not changing.

Rangiatea School for Young Parents

Rangiatea - Whakatane School for Young Parents had an awesome time away at the snow last week. The weather was amazing so we were able to experience so much that the region offers. On our way to our accommodation on the first day we stopped at Te Porere Redoubt. This is the site of the last battle of Te Kooti against government soldiers who were determined to finally capture him. He escaped despite their efforts. The Redoubt is very impressive as you can see how it was used to protect Te Kooti's fighters from attack. It is protected by Heritage New Zealand because it is so important to our history.

Our second day was spent on Mt Ruapehu. Getting the snow gear on was pretty epic exercise before we even got on the snow! We started with sledding and enjoyed getting some air! Happy Valley was very busy with school groups, including some from Whakatane High School on the senior snow trip. After lunch we had a ski lesson. It had looked pretty easy from a distance but the lesson was challenging. Despite some embarrassing wipe outs, students were determined to ski from the top of the Happy Valley slope. It was awesome to support each other to try something new and keep persevering. The icing on the top was the heavy snow which began to fall as we learned. When we had arrived, the only snow at Happy Valley had been from the snow machines. By the time we left the rocks on either side were covered and we even managed to build a small snowman.

That evening we went for an adventure to find some local glowworm caves near Kakahi. They are located in an amazing tunnel which is created by high cliffs either side and bush which meets at the top. When we first walked into the tunnel in the pitch black, it seemed as if there would be nothing to see. But as we went further, amazing pin pricks of light appeared all of the cliff walls. It was stunning and so cool to see something that was just hiding down a rural road.

A huge thank you must go to our teacher, Cathryn Rowland, for the work she put in to make the trip such a success and we are hoping that we can return again in 2023.

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Below is a small list of events coming up.

For the full calendar of events, check out this link:

  • Senior Subject Information Evening - Wednesday, 24 August
  • NCEA Teacher Only Day - Thursday, 25 August
  • BOP Chess Champs - Friday, 26 August
  • Winter Tournament Week - 29 August - 2 September
  • Student Mentor Interviews - 7-8 September (students to study at home on 8 September)
  • Model United Nations - Friday, 9 September
  • Maori Language Week - 12-16 September
  • Year 8 Open Day and Evening - Tuesday, 13 September (Seniors to study at home)
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Outdoor Education Department Request

If anyone has any unwanted lifejackets lying around at home, we'd love these for the Outdoor Education Department!

Student Health Notice

Health services provided FREE in school:

  • School Nurse: daily except Wednesday morning
  • School Doctor: Tuesdays P2
Visit the Student Office to make an appointment.

School bus information

If you require information about your student/s bus route or timetable for any in-zone routes, please contact Go Bus directly on: 07 846 8796. If you're wanting information for out-of-zone bus routes, please contact Uzabus on 07 308 6169. Masks are mandatory on all school buses.

Rangiatea Whakatane School For Young Parents

Check out the Rangiatea Facebook page and see what our fantastic teachers have been up with with our young parents:
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