St Mary's School

Thursday 3rd November

'There is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in' - Leonard Cohen

Dear whānau,

This week's newsletter is one that I’ve been humming and harring about for a week now and it is one that I haven’t written lightly. I’ll give you the heads up now, this week’s message addresses ‘the black dog’, mental health and the crisis we are currently facing as New Zealanders.

Why have I decided to roll with this topic you might ask.

Usually I listen to ‘The Morning Rumble’ on The Rock FM on my way to school, something I find always puts in me a good space for the day. Some mornings the yarns and banter between Rog, Bryce, Mulls and Mel is SO good, that I have to sit in the car park until the end of the segment and it usually ends with my eyes welling up with tears from laughing so much.

Last week was quite different. I had to pull over because of the tears in my eyes. Unfortunately, this time it wasn’t from laughing, it was from hearing Bryce share that they’d received a message from a listener who had lost their mate over the weekend. He then went on to share some very upsetting statistics and pointed out that ‘there's a real chance we lose a Rock listener every day. Like, every single day’.

Then on Tuesday, they interviewed Mike King, the founder of I Am Hope, the foundation that has set up Gumboot Friday, which we will get behind here at school tomorrow and he said we need to ‘stop being silent’ and he’s absolutely right.

Silence isn’t making the change we so desperately need, silence isn’t getting our friends and families the help they deserve, silence isn’t saving lives, so enough of the silence, it’s time to talk about it and it’s time to work together to make a change.

What can we do to make a change? Well, that’s a real tough one and I’m certainly no expert in this field. What I do know is that giving a donation to ‘Gumboot Friday’ tomorrow will make a difference. If you didn’t know, the money raised goes straight into giving young people (under 25) an opportunity to connect with an expert that will be able to help them. You can also text BOOT to 469 to make an instant $3 donation or visit their website.

Another thing I’m not an expert in, but know a bit about, is our school values and they’re something I think we can lean on to help us do our bit.

From our school vision: ‘We are there for each other, supporting staff and families through good and bad times, always showing hope.’

Our St Mary’s School community is unique and special because each and every one of you are part of it - that’s kids, parents, grandparents, staff, the parish, and friends. Whether you realise it or not, you have all made a contribution towards our school being the best in all of the land - you have made the little people the amazing kids that they are today and for that, we’re forever grateful. Just know that our community is better with you in it.

Love - ‘We belong to God, all in us is His’

That’s right, God made you and God doesn’t make mistakes as far as that’s concerned. You can put our value of love into action anytime, anywhere just by smiling and saying g’day to someone. You might be the only person that speaks to them or smiles at them all day. You can put love into action by popping round to see a mate for a coffee or a stubbie and asking them if they’re okay. You can show it in a text or phone call. You can show it by listening.

Faith - ‘Put your whole confidence in God’

Sending up a prayer or two has never hurt anyone. You can pray for yourself or you can pray for others, or you can just have a chat with the big man upstairs. He’s non-judgmental and a great listener (He doesn’t tend to interrupt) and don’t forget, He loves you unconditionally.

Hope - ‘Good today, better tomorrow’

It’s really hard to have hope when things seem so desperate. Know that your actions, no matter how big or small, may provide hope to those who are struggling. You could be the change.


You can find the links to Bryce and Mike King’s emotional interviews on ‘The Morning Rumble’ at

Just a heads up - there is the occasional swear word in the Mike King video but it’s still well worth watching.

You can also find links to mental health helplines on their website, scroll down to the bottom and there is a huge list -

Thanks to the crew at The Rock FM, I know their honest chats, fundraisers, live events etc have already opened many important conversations and have helped save many lives.

So, let’s do our thing, the way we do it best, and let’s work together to bring about some change.

God bless you all.


Acting Principal

On a side note, please remember, if you have something you'd like us to celebrate in the newsletter, send me through a picture and a wee blurb by Thursday 9am each week and I'll make sure it gets in -

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Disco Dancing

We had a fantastic turn out to our Home and School Disco last Friday night. The kids (and some parents) had a great time dancing and sweating up a storm. Thank you to all the people who helped make it happen including the committee, St Peter's for the use of their hall, Hayley Stevenson for the use of her DJ gear, Peter Moir for lighting and also a big thank you to everyone who hung around at the end to put chairs out.

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Tori Peeters - Ex Pupil

Thanks for the great picture, Sarah. Sarah took Max & Lily to the Breakfast with Tori Peeters at The Thomas Green last week. This was run by Longford Intermediate with proceeds going to the Cancer Society.

It was a great morning with Tori sharing her inspirational sporting journey with her javelin accomplishments. Great for the kids to hear what a girl from Gore (and St Mary's) can achieve and also what she is continuing to strive for. Sarah didn't want to brag or take credit for Tori's success but she did mention that she taught her when she was a pupil here at St Mary's.

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Truck Loads of Talent

Wow, here's a kid to watch! Chloey Eslava, what an amazingly talented artist you are! I reckon this would look good framed and on my wall ... hint, hint.
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Ka pai Myia

Myia was enrolled in Gore Out of School Music (awesome programme) during the year in 2 classes (Speech and Drama) and Drums. Classes once a week in Tuesday afternoons. She is a first time student in both areas. Wednesday night was their last class for the year and there were certificates and trophies handed out. Myia received Highly Commended Certificate for Speech and Drama and was presented with the Junior Percussion Trophy for Drums. Ka pai, Myia! Super work!

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Science Roadshow

On Tuesday our year 5 and 6 students went up to St Peter's College to explore the Science Roadshow. The Science Roadshow comes to Gore each year and is a hands-on science education programme. Live shows, hands-on exhibits and teacher resources that broaden student knowledge and experience; connecting with science and technology and the world around them ... plus it's lots of fun.

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'What does the fox say?'

Elliott and Chase have been working hard at their art REAP course to produce these epic fox portraits. Ka pai, girls. This must've taken a lot of patience.
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Upcoming events

Week 3

Room Kereru and Mrs Knowler - Gospel

Monday - Friday - Rosary in Room Kiwi

Tuesday - Science Roadshow for years 5 and 6

Tuesday - Levi in for bike tricks

Friday - Eastern Southland Athletics Day

Week 4

Room Pukeko and Mrs Cruickshank and Mrs Thacker - Gospel

Monday - Friday - Rosary in Room Kiwi

Tuesday and Wednesday - Sports Activator

Friday - Group art course with Jacqui Byars and Janet de Wagt

Friday - Armistice Day - Whole school at RSA then to the Cenotaph for the service 11am

Week 5

Room Ruru and Miss Smith - Monday prayers and Gospel

Monday - Wednesday - Year 3's to Gore Main for frisbee golf

Thursday - Year 3's to Dolamore Park for frisbee golf tournament

Week 6

Room Takahe and Miss Bond - Gospel

Monday - Advent Prayers - Church

Week 7

Room Moa and Miss Hood - Gospel

Monday - Advent Prayers - Church

Tuesday and Wednesday - Sports Activator

Wednesday - Karla from UTB in - Microsoft with year 6's

Thursday - Tūrangawaewae celebration and cultural Mass

Week 8

Room Piwakawaka and Mrs Christie - Gospel

Monday - Advent Prayers - Church

Friday - Final leavers assembly for our year 6 leaders

Week 9

Room Kiwi and Mrs Gray and Mrs Hansen

Monday - Advent Prayers - Church

Tuesday - 6pm - Junior Nativity - Church

Thursday - 6pm - Whole School End of Year Mass and last day for 2022