Newsletter Week 7 Term 2
St Peter's College 18th June 2021
Kia ora e te whanau
We are reaching the halfway point in the school year, it is the middle of winter, it is dark in the morning when we leave to go to school and work, and for those with sports practices and jobs after school, it can also be dark when we return home. At this week’s full school assembly, I talked about the concept of time and how precious it is. We get one chance at life on this earth, and we want all our students to make the very best of it. To be successful in all that they do. People often spend time discussing their plans for their days off, whether it is time out of work or out of school. School tends to consume a lot of time on weekdays. There is the normal timetable, possibly some sports or music fixture after school and not much space for anything but homework between dinner and bedtime. However, the weekend gives us two clear days, so it is no wonder that we discuss our leisure plans and look forward to Fridays, when we can begin to do what we want to do rather than what someone else tells us to do.
There is one problem with looking forward to something special, it can sometimes encourage us to live our lives in the future. The problem is that it could take away some of our enjoyment of the present. A long time ago, a Christian man called Augustine prayed, ‘Lord, make me good, but not yet.’ Augustine prayed like that because he was having a great time and he didn’t want the fun to stop. Of course, the present is not always enjoyable; sometimes, it might feel like it is hardly bearable. Looking forward to a treat in the future, like a holiday or a special film, can help us when we feel a bit down.
However, living in the future is not really living at all. It is just making pictures in our imagination. The present - what the theologian Paul Tillich called ‘the eternal now’ - is all we’ve got. Our lives are much richer when we try to appreciate what is happening right now.
Our lives are made up of tiny moments and each one is important. We can spend each moment doing the right thing or the wrong thing. If we squander our hours, ruin our days, and throw away our weeks, our lives will be empty. However, if we see each hour as an opportunity, if we spend each day growing and if we use each week to move ahead, our lives will be full. Here at St Peter’s College, we want all our students to strive for, in the here and now, their own individual goals towards excellence in whatever field builds a fire in their belly.
As already mentioned in a previous newsletter, the Education Review office (ERO) is operating a new partnership model with schools. ERO has shifted from event-based external reviews to supporting each school in a process of continuous improvement. This more differentiated approach uses a developmental evaluation that reflects individual schools’ context, culture and needs. It aims to strengthen the capability of all schools through embedding a continuous improvement approach, strengthening schools’ own engagement with, and accountability to whanau. St Peter’s College has begun this partnership with Mrs Christine Gold and the initiating phase where they meet with the BoT chair and Principal as well as some key leadership staff has already taken place. They are now working with us to decide on an evaluation plan for the next few years. They are looking at our strengths and weaknesses and will be putting together a focus on what will be most useful for our continuous improvement. At this stage, this focus is most likely to be on Year 9 and 10 literacy which has had significant decreases in achievement over the last four years.
So, it is perfect timing that we now look to the future of St Peter’s and begin planning our school charter for 2022-2024. A charter sets the direction for the school and identifies the priorities the board expects the Principal to be leading. Last weekend the BoT along with Gigi Hollyer from the New Zealand Trustees Association met to plan the strategic direction of the school for the next three years. The BoT has overall responsibility for developing and reviewing the school's charter. It plays an active role in setting the strategic direction and part of this includes consulting with all our stake holders. This includes staff, students, and parents as well as local iwi. Therefore, we are excited to share with you our ideas and dreams for the school next week and welcome your input. I will be available in the fishbowl on the following mornings and afternoon to share the direction and invite you to add your input. These times are designed to fit around your drop off and pick up routines at school. Some BoT members and I will also be available on Thursday evening for those of you who work during the day. After next week a follow up online survey will be sent out to you all to add further ideas and input, especially for those of you who can’t physically make it into the school:
Strategic planning consultation times:
Tuesday 22nd June 8am-9am
Wednesday 23rd June 8am-9am
Friday 25th June 3pm-4pm
Special evening session with BoT members: Thursday 24th June 5pm-6pm
Your views, dreams, and aspirations for your children’s futures here at St Peter’s College is very important to us so please come along and have your say about the future direction of our school.
Charity fulfils the Law
We are looking at running a school-wide sacramental programme beginning early in Term 3. If you would like your son or daughter to be baptised, confirmed or receive their first Holy Communion or would like to learn more about the programme then please contact our Director of Religious Studies Mr Brendan Terry at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Board of Trustees News
On Saturday 12th June, the Board of Trustees, along with the Principal, Tara Quinney and our new Chaplain, Fr Jaime Lalaguna, met to commence work on the 2022-2024 Charter/Strategic Plan. The session was superbly facilitated by Gigi Hollyer, who has been involved with New Zealand School Trustees Association for eight years and provides Governance and Facilitation services to schools throughout the South Island. We are excited with what has come out of the session, and will be looking to share these insights with our students, staff and parent/caregiver community to get your input, feedback and ideas. Mrs Quinney will be providing more details in the weeks to come.
I wanted to thank all those involved for making time on their Saturday to participate!
Board of Trustees Chairperson
Career Pathways Department
Presently we have information on two scholarships that have come into the department.
- Gore Garden Club has two scholarships for students planning on tertiary study.
- New Zealand Forestry Service has nine scholarships available.
Details on both scholarships are on our Facebook page.www.facebook.com/StPetersCollegeCareerPathways
Do not forget to check out MoneyHub for all national/regional scholarships
This week we showcase two students out on Gateway.
Catherine Brady has started MITO (Motor Industry Organisation) papers and is working at Michael Kelly Auto Electrical. Here is Catherine working the lathe under the under the guidance of Michael Kelly.
Brianna Hedley is planning on a career in Primary Teaching. Brianna is gaining experience of what it is like in the classroom at her old school West Gore.
With winter upon us we have had a few requests for our female students to wear trousers and/or shorts as part of the uniform. Female students are allowed to wear the trousers/shorts that our male students wear and get them tailored to fit. We are looking at some suppliers of female trousers and shorts and hope to have these options available in the near future. It is an expectation that all students are in winter uniform and if help is needed in purchasing these items due to financial constraints, please do not hesitate to get in contact with the Principal.
Our amazing rugby committee volunteers meet once a month at school to deliver the best outcomes for all our rugby students. With nearly 150 students at St Peter's College playing rugby across Saturday and Monday evenings with practices almost every day it takes a village to cover so many essential areas:
- Organising and driving vans/cars to away games
- Organising hospitality after games
- Making changing rooms available and ready
- Setting up, sometimes up to 3 fields a game day
- Fundraising and organising community events
- Running club days
- Organising and attending tournaments
A big thank you also goes out to our coaches and managers for running training and games and to all our enthusiastic parents for supporting us at the games!
Making it Happen
Hockey Winter Tournament - (Years 9-13). Please fill in the sporty form below if your child would like to play in the hockey winter tournament which is held from 29th August - 3rd September. We have opened this up for all students Year 9 and above who would be interested in entering the tournament.
Upcoming sporting events:
Southland Primary Cross Country – Friday 18th June
Senior Netball Tournament – 4th - 5th July
SISS Junior Netball Tournament – 12th - 14th July
Ski Trip – 24th - 25th July
Sports Registrations/ Events/ Draws will be online!
For registrations and draws, please use the St Peter's College Facebook Sports page and also the St Peter's College website.
Schools Apps NZ (if you do not have this go to Play store app and download).
If you require any further information email email@example.com or come and see Jess Young in the PE office.
Feast Day Mass - 30th June - Church of the Blessed Sacrament, 10am all are welcome
Eisteddfod Eliminations - 30th June and 1st July
Board of Trustees meeting - 30th June
Rosmini House Open Day (Hostel) - 3rd July
Eisteddfod Concert - 8th July
School Holidays - last day of term 9th July
Back to School - 26th July
SchoolPickUp is an online store, selling a very wide range (currently 10,000 items and growing) of high-quality products. Most importantly, any purchases you make will mean 50% of the profits go straight to St Peter's College Gore.