Newsletter 2023, Term 1, Week 9

Tawa College

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Message from the Tumuaki

As we approach the end of the first term I would like to acknowledge the students and our community for their ongoing support of the school. We are continuing to manage our way through the ongoing PPTA industrial action and we appreciate your understanding as we try to mitigate the impact of this.

Tawa College has an explicit commitment to value the achievement and success of the whole person. An important aspect of this is academic achievement. I am pleased to confirm that Tawa College continues to perform above the national average at L1 and L2 NCEA and is comparable with the national average at L3. In the final week of Term 1 we will celebrate student success with an academic prize giving for those students who were awarded their NCEA qualification endorsed with Excellence.

In line with our values we are looking for opportunities to collaborate with our learners to support them to make the most of their opportunities and strive for success. Next week on Monday and Tuesday parents and caregivers will have the opportunity to meet with subject teachers to discuss progress thus far and next steps for our learners.

It has been fantastic to see that scheduled educational, sporting and cultural trips have been able to proceed this term without the disruption we faced at the start of 2022. These are important educational opportunities for our students and have created a more positive and engaging atmosphere at the college.

We wish all our students a relaxing break and look forward to welcoming you back in Term 2 with renewed focus and readiness for learning.

Ngā mihi nui

Andrew Savage

Absence Reporting

Please report a student absence using one of the following three options:

1. Use the School App

2. Ring our absence line 232 8184 extension 1

3. Email

Please state your child’s name, form class and the reason for the absence. Please also ring the college office if your child plans to sign out at any time during the school day for an appointment.

An automated text message is sent by the Absence Manager each day after Period 1. Planned or extended absences of three days or longer require the prior written approval of the Principal.

All Year 9 to 12 students must sign out at the college office before leaving school for any reason.

Student Success

Cullen Breakfast 2023

On Wednesday the 22nd of March myself, Deputy Principal, Mrs Nicholas and Head Student Sala Fogavai attended the Cullen Breakfast. Out of the many honourable guest speakers in attendance, we were privileged enough to meet the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Chris Hipkins and the Mayor of Wellington,Tory Whanau. We had many interesting discussions surrounding the idea of democracy and student involvement with fellow student leaders. I think I can speak for all when I say I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and took away many exciting ideas and thoughts.

Kaita Hummel-Jibiki, Head Student

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Pictured at the Cullen Breakfast, Sala Fogavai, Tory Whanau and Kaita Hummel-Jibiki

NZ Surf Life Saving Championships

Congratulations to Hunter Gilligan who recently competed at the NZ Surf Lifesaving Nationals in New Brighton, Christchurch for the Titahi Bay Surf Club.

Hunter competed in both the U19 and U23 men’s surf boat races. His crew won two national titles in the U19 men’s short and long course races and walked away with two gold medals. In the U23 age group he competed with his brother Jacob and their crew came 4th nationally.

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Outward Bound Pōneke Course 2023

Congratulations to Kyle Owen and Mani Folau for successfully completing their 21 day Outward Bound course at Anakiwa, Marlborough Sounds. Below is a photo of their course participants.
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Tidy Kiwi

A special thank you to Year 12 student Kennedy Hughes who has singularly been very proactive in cleaning the school of rubbish that does not end up in the bins provided. A huge thank you from the property team and the college community.

Tawa College Formal Committee

The 2023 Formal Committee is currently looking for donations of formal wear, accessories and shoes. Each year over 300 excited students gather for a night of celebration and fun at the annual school Formal. The 2023 Formal Committee understands there can be a high cost involved in such an event and wants all students to look and feel their best regardless of budget. If you have any outfits, accessories or shoes in good condition we will be warmly accepting donations at the school office until the 9th June.

Languages Department and Te tai Māori

We held a pōwhiri to welcome our short-term visitors from Japan. Thank you to all the staff, whānau and students involved, particularly to Matua Jack and Mr Edgecombe. The visiting students have been blown away by the reception and warmth of the welcome at the pōwhiri. This is the first year we’ve been able to welcome back our visitors since the pandemic, so a very special moment for us as a school.

French Classes

Enjoy the photo gallery below of Year 9 French students preparing and tasting escargo, Year 10 students preparing and enjoying crepes and the French Club (Friday lunchtimes in E4) enjoying conversation and board games in French.
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Year 12 Geography trip to Tongariro National Park

Last week, the Level 2 Geographers travelled north for their annual field trip to Tongariro National Park. Over three days and two nights, students conduct geographic research at Tongariro for learning and assessment about large natural environments, and the impact of tourism on our natural landscapes in Aotearoa. Students walk over 20 kilometres and collect research data along the way, and study processes in real-time while in the field - such as altitudinal zonation, climate and weather variability, and tourism patterns. Along our journey, we stop at the Taihape Gumboot Throw, the Ohakune Carrot Park, Tawhai Falls, Iwikau Ski Field, the hot pools and more! This is a real highlight of the year in Year 12 Geography.

Careers Department

University Update

The first round of university visits has just about been completed including visits from Victoria, Massey, Waikato, Auckland and Canterbury who talked to students in Years 12 and 13 about study options, halls of residence, support services, and more. I am constantly amazed by the changing opportunities at NZ Universities as they respond to industry needs and the ever changing world of work.

Otago and Lincoln are scheduled to visit early in Term 2.

University Open Days - it is highly recommended that students attend university open day events so they can make informed decisions about where, and what, to study. A list of dates is attached here.

Other Information Sessions

Ara Institute of Technology/ Te Pūkenga visited the Media Studies class to talk about NZ Broadcasting school.

QRC (Queenstown Resort College) and PIHMS (Pacific International Hotel Management) have also talked to tourism students about career pathways.

Other visits planned include:

  • NZ Defence Force

  • Yoobee

  • Whitireia/Weltec/Te Pūkenga

Details of these, and others, will be advertised in the student notices.

Gap Years

Gap years are back for school leavers. Students can find information about a range of providers in the Careers corridor. Applications are now open with Letz Live closing on April 9th for positions starting in 2024.

TC Beanies

TC Beanies is back up and running with our first Mojo trainees for the year having completed their training course and learning the TC Beanies ropes from our trained baristas.

TC Beanies is open each Wednesday and Friday morning from 8am - 9am for coffee and hot chocolate. All are welcome.

PE Uniform and Lost Property

If you have a student or students who are no longer taking PE, the Department would be very grateful for donations of good quality used PE uniform items. These can be dropped off at the college office anytime. Thank you.

If your student has mislaid any uniform items, please ask them to come and check with the staff in the front office as we have a growing number of lost property items. Any items not collected by the end of term will either be donated or repurposed.

Canteen Menu

Kia ora, along with other confectionary items sold at the canteen, please note below our canteen menu and daily special items.

Free Period Products

The access to period products initiative aims to provide free period products to children and young people in all state and state-integrated schools and kura across New Zealand. Periods are a fact of life. Despite this, young people don’t always have access to the products they need to feel comfortable at school, engage in their learning, and manage what should be a normal and healthy part of life.

Poor access to period products can affect students’ attendance and engagement at school. Students also miss out on sporting and cultural activities and can feel embarrassed and ashamed about not being supported to manage their periods. This affects their achievement and wellbeing.

All people who have periods are entitled to come and collect two FREE period products each month. These will be available from the college office, your deans offices and Mrs Lodge's office in the gymnasium. If you have any queries please email

School Bridge

For seeing information about your student(s). Please remember to check and update your contact details so that we have current information on our database.

Tawa College School Communication

Tawa College uses many forms of communication to notify you of school events and student achievements. In terms of day to day operational information please use School Bridge to access information on student attendance, school reports and academic results.

The School App continues to be an accessible source of information about the school and is used by many caregivers to notify school of absence. It will also be used to push out information throughout the year and in emergencies - please subscribe via your app store.

The Tawa College website is for parents and caregivers to find information about the school.

E2Learn is the site for students to find information about the day to day running of the school.

Tawa College Alumni

White Ferns Melie Kerr - NZC Women's Cricketer of the Year

Congratulations to former Tawa College student Melie Kerr who is the recipient of the inaugrual Debbie Hockley award. This new award honours New Zealand's outstanding female cricketer of the year. The award was received at the ANZNZC awards ceremony held in Auckland on 23rd March by Melie's mother, Jo Kerr, as Melie is currently playing in India for the WPL.

NASA Scholarship

NASA administrator Bill Nelson has been visiting Government officials this week. We are pleased to read in a Stuff article that past student and Head Boy 2016 Daniel Wrench is one of five university students that have been selected for a space scholarship to attend the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California for 16 weeks.

Community Messages

Tawa College Staff Vacancies

Groundsperson - full time permanent position

Technician - part time permanent position

Details for each vacancy are available on the Tawa College website, follow the link

If you are interested in applying for either position please download an application form from the website and send this together with a covering letter and your CV to our Executive Officer, Freda Kelly @

Tawa College Community Education

Term 2 courses are now available for enrolment on the website. There are two Defensive Driving courses in Term 2. This is a great opportunity for our students to improve their driving skills and shorten their time on a restricted license. Due to popular demand we are adding an additional Bollywood class alongside our Yoga and Tai Chi exercises classes. We have a Beginners Sign Language class, many sewing based courses and more to keep you busy on cold winter nights. Check out our website:

Otago University Research Survey

We’d like to hear your opinions about later starts for Year 12 and 13 students.

Click the link below to access short University of Otago research surveys for students (age 16+), parents, teachers and principals, and Board members of NZ high schools.

The research is funded by CureKids and the study has been approved by the University of Otago Human Ethics Committee approval #22/105

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VakaCon is a FREE one-day immersive tech conference for Pasefika youth and families to discover the limitless possibilities within the technology industry.

Come along to the Te Raupahara Arena in Porirua on Thursday 27th April. The day will be packed with tech talks, free food, entertainment, activities and giveaways - plus the opportunity to connect and talanoa with tech companies and Pasefika people in tech

Designed and delivered by Fibre Fale.

About Fibre Fale

Fibre Fale is a purpose-led collective founded to create pathways for Pacific people in tech. Our mission is to create a future where Pacific People have digital equity, are confident pursuing pathways in digital technologies and see themselves as future creators.

We co-design and deliver immersive tech programmes and experiences; we share the stories of Pacific people in tech to create visibility and amplify the voices of our community; and we create platforms and spaces for Pacific people to connect, learn and grow.

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Tawa Business Group

Tawa Business Group has recently launched a job board on our website. The job board will contain jobs that are available within Tawa. There is a real shortage of staff at the moment with many businesses looking to recruit. Please check it out via the attached link:

Recycle Used Mobile Phones

Tawa College is great at recycling cell phones. The money raised goes towards keeping our waterways clean which is very important at the moment. If you have any phones to recycle. Please put them in the box in the student office.

Proudly Sponsored by

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