Newsletter Week 7 Term 2

Newsletter 17 - Week 7 Term 2 16 June 2021

Principal's Message

What a great Mass that was on Friday. Father Thomas certainly likes to involve the children and is pretty relaxed when it comes to children being involved as much as possible. The singing was awesome and the school choir added some punch also. I could hear them loud and clear. Thanks to Bernie Hall, our DRS, our musicians Tai Waititi and Lorette Tiedt and the teachers who were responsible for getting the readers etc ready.

Showquest is over and we received excellent feedback on children’s positivity and behaviour during the day and performance at night. The children involved performed with excellence and they must have been worn out by the end of the night. It was a long day for everyone, but very worthwhile. Thanks, Bernie Hall and Jane Trask for all the work you put into preparing the students. We are also so lucky to have so many parents willing to help with costumes and anything else that needed attending to. Thank you to them too.

Jill Dinniss and Leanne Rankin had two Rippa Rugby teams out on Wednesday and by all accounts, the children performed very well. Thank you both for taking our children to the tournament.

The Incredible Years programme for parents which was being held on Thursday nights concluded last week. I'd like to thank Brigitte Holmes for organising and being at all the Incredible Years Programme sessions. The programme ran on a Thursday night from February to last week. Thanks too to the parents who invested the time to attend. We hope you found the course useful. We appreciate the commitment from everyone involved. The sessions were facilitated by Erna Cullen and psychologist Corbus - from the Ministry of Education.

Mr G was out with our Chess team in Tauranga on Monday and Brigitte Holmes joined him yesterday with a larger team competing at Lynmore School.Our children are doing particularly well and a number of them have now qualified for the Nationals. That is excellent children and thanks must go to Mr G for his passion for children playing Chess.

You may have already heard that we won the Education Category of the 2021 National Access Alliance People’s Choice Accessible Business Awards. The awards recognise businesses and organisations that go the extra mile to enable everyone to fully participate in society. Thanks to a parent, Maree Judd, who nominated us for this award. Maree and Anne Cato were at the awards last night.

The Sacramental programme is due to start on 5th August. I will send a letter home shortly outlining the programme and dates. Father Thomas is also offering a Baptism Programme for all children between the ages of 5 and 7. There are four information sessions and then children can be baptised into the Catholic Church. More about that soon too.

Message from DRS Bernie Hall

‘Laudato Si—Prayer for our Earth’ by Pope Francis

All powerful God, you are present in the whole universe

and in the smallest of your creatures.

You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.

Pour upon us the power of your love, that we may protect life and beauty.

Fill us with peace, that we may live as brothers and sisters, harming no one. Teach us to discover the worth of each thing, to be filled with respect for every creature, to recognize that we are all part of one human family.

We thank you for being with us each day. Encourage us, we pray, in our struggle. For justice, love and peace.

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PB4L is a Ministry of Education initiative that was developed to help NZ schools build a culture where positive behaviour and learning is a way of life. A key part of this for our school is having our school values at the very heart of the way we live and learn at St Mary’s.

Our behaviour management system is based on the Golden Rules/Golden Time/ Circle Time model devised by Jenny Mosley. If you were to ask children what rules we should live by they would most likely talk about caring for others, looking after our environment and showing respect. These universal values are the basis for the Golden Rules. There are six Golden Rules with classroom and Playground variations. These are displayed in our classrooms and are referred to during the day. When used well, the Golden Rules/Golden Time/Circle Time model can help students to talk about behaviour and act as a guide to making good choices. How many of the Golden Rules can your child name?

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Parent Meeting 29 June - A Values Based Approach to Digital Wellbeing

Our school is offering a session for Y3-4 classes and a couple of sessions for Y5-6 classes of a programme called Te Iwi Matihiko™. This awareness building programme starts on the 21 June. The programme helps young people and their families understand how to reflect on and care for their own wellbeing while learning about the positive and negative impacts that digital spaces play in their lives. .

We are offering a parent workshop about Te Iwi Matihiko - it provides a foundation on which key values; mana (respect), manaaki (caring for others) and kaitiakitanga (guardianship) can be explored and activated. Our workshop covers the topics we have spoken about with your children and will highlight key challenges in the social media and gaming space while sharing their respective benefits. We will also speak about pathways into digital and creative tech by better understanding the gaming/esports ecosystem. Put this date in your diary. We encourage anyone interested to attend on Tuesday 29 June, 5.15-6pm in R14.

It is critical that we ensure our children and their caregivers understand the key values that underpin social interactions, know how to deal with cyberbullying, stay safe online, understand how to think critically, manage their emotions and make good choices.

Upcoming School Events

  • Wednesday - 16 - 17 -18 June - JPC Interviews at St Mary's

    Monday 28 June - School Photos

    Tuesday 29 June - Parent Meeting on Digital Wellness, R14 5.15- 6pm

    Friday 9 July Teacher only Day (last day of Term 2)

  • School Photos

    School Photos will be taken by Photolife ( on the morning of Monday 28 June. This week your child should bring home an information sheet regarding how to view and purchase your child's photos online. The keycode to use for orders for your child will be issued once photos have been taken and are ready for purchase.

    If you want sibling photos taken you need to collect and return a sibling photo booking form (from the School Office) BEFORE the photo day on Monday 28 June. NB Without a signed form being returned to the School Office NO LATER THAN 3pm pn Friday 25 June. Sorry, but you are likely to be disappointed if you don't follow these instructions. There will be no sibling photos taken without the signed form being returned by the deadline outlined.

    Sports News

    Rippa Rugby World Cup Tournament

    Last week we had two teams represent St Mary's School at the Rippa Rugby Tournament held here in Rotorua. Both teams came together on the day to display some amazing skills, fantastic teamwork and pure grit & determination to finish the day with some great results. Thank you to our Head Coach - Mrs Dinniss & Assistant Coach Jason for taking the teams, we couldn't have done it without you. Thank you also to our awesome parents for your help & support on the day, always much appreciated!

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    Central Bay of Plenty Cross Country

    We have over 40 students taking part in the Rural Cluster Cross country being held at Kaharoa School on Tuesday next week. Well done to those selected to attend.

    Waiariki Girls Football

    Waiariki Girls Football is putting together teams for some up-coming girls' tournaments. The Waiariki teams are combined teams from across all Rotorua clubs. These teams give girls who play regular football in mixed teams the opportunity to be part of an all-girls' team and play in an all-girls' tournament. They are also open to girls who are not currently playing Saturday football.

    They are not graded or ‘representative’ teams. They are open to any girls that want to take part.

    You can take part in one or both of the tournaments. If you are already in a girls' team, check with your coach if you are attending as part of an existing team. The dates are:


    Sunday 18th July (middle weekend of the School holidays).


    Saturday 25th September


    U8s (7th and 8th Grade - born 2013 and 2014)

    U10s (9th and 10th Grade – born 2011 and 2012)

    U13s - Waiariki Tournament only (11th, 12th, 13th Grade – born 2010, 2009, 2008)

    There will be opportunities for the teams to come together for training and skills sessions ahead of the tournaments, but the days/dates for these are yet to be determined.

    If you are interested in being part of these teams please complete the online form and we will contact you directly.

    Register your interest for the tournaments here>

    Waiariki Football Registration Form

    If you would like to stay up to date with other girls football activities you can subscribe to the Waiariki Girls and Womens Football mailing list here>

    Matariki Night Ride

    The Safe and sustainable Journeys Team from Rotorua Lakes Council is running a Matariki night ride on July 10th at 5pm.

    This is a free fun event for the whole family.

    Link to event on FB:

    Special Mentions

    We love celebrating your child's successes outside of school, please share them with us. Email a small blurb & photo (optional) to Whaea Leanne at by 12pm Tuesdays for the following days newsletter.

    Thank you to Living Well Church

    Our school community received a beautiful big bunch of flowers today from Living Well Church, congratulating us on our win in the Access Alliance Awards last night. Thank you Living Well Church. What a lovely surprise.


    Last week we had 46 senior students participate and compete in Showquest 2021! These students all showed courage and perseverance acting and dancing in front of a crowd of 900 people! They also showed joy in their performance. St Mary’s won an award for the Best Soundtrack. Special thanks to our teachers Jane Trask and Bernie Hall and all our fabulous parent and grandparent helpers.

    Filipino Celebration

    We had a number of students perform at the Night Market last Thursday evening as part of the Philipine Quincentennial and Independence Day celebration. It looked like a fabulous celebration of food, dancing & singing.

    Bulaklakan Dancers: Alexa, Nina, Celine, Marie & Sophia.

    Singers: Josh & Jana.

    Waterpolo Success

    Well done to our past St Mary's students Neela Stephens, Annie Neilson, Thornton Smart and Alex Cameron (coach) who represented the Rotorua Waterpolo Club in an Under 12 tournament in Auckland over the Queen's Birthday weekend. After 4 days of competition the team secured a gold medal in the B Grade division, which is a fantastic achievement -especially against the high level of competition from the mainly Auckland clubs. Congratulations team, it's fantastic to see our past students successes as players and as coaches.

    If anyone is interested in playing waterpolo, please come along to the Aquatic Centre (25m indoor pool) on Sunday's at 4.30 pm.

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