Balclutha Primary School - T1 Wk 7

Newsletter 19 March 2021


Kia Ora e te Whānau,

Another week has rolled around and I continue to be astounded by all the wonderful things that happen every day at our fabulous school. I hope that you are all enjoying the wee snapshots of school life in our new look newsletters.

This week we have held our first set of parent/ teacher goal setting interviews. This is a wonderful opportunity to share all the great things that are happening in the classroom and to set goals to ensure the learning continues. If you haven't been able to meet with classroom teachers this week, they will be in touch to either set another time to catch up, or have a phone conversation around learning goals. The continued success of every child is our core business, and we acknowledge the importance of our whānau in ensuring this happens. We really appreciate your support.

While we have had our formal interviews this week, please remember that staff are always available if you have any concerns or just want to see how things are going. Please just pop in or ring the office for an appointment.

I hope you all enjoy the long weekend,

Ngā mihi nui,

Vicki Neave

Thank You

A huge thank you to the Clutha Licensing Trust for donating and delivering 3 room dividers that we can use for our arts programme. These will be used in many ways including displaying our art work and as props for our drama.

Whānau hui

There will be a hui for the whānau of our Māori students on Thursday 25th March, 6pm (please note the change in time) in the school staff room to discuss how to grow Te Ao Māori at Balclutha Primary School to best support our tamariki. If you would like to attend this hui please rsvp to by Monday 22 March.

Parent concerns and social media

Recently the behaviour of some of our students was the focus of a rant on social media. While I do not condone the behaviour of the students involved, I would like to remind our school community of more effective ways of managing these concerns.

Please remember to:

Tell the person who can make a difference.

This is not generally the anonymous masses on facebook or other social media platforms. This opens up an opportunity for anyone to vent, often about unrelated events, which then in turn reflects poorly on every member of our school community.

I encourage all our parents not to engage in online conversations which reflect poorly on our school.

If you have any concerns regarding the behaviour of our students, please come in and talk to our school staff. We are here to help and may be able to resolve the issue quickly.

Please see the attached flowchart outlining our school procedures for dealing with concerns.

Board of Trustees

The BOT had their meeting this week on Tuesday night and we would like to share some updates of what is happening.

In early 2020, the Ministry of Education provided a lump sum of money to all schools to use on particular projects to be completed by Dec 2021.

Balclutha School has been allocated $110,187. Initially it was thought that this money would be spent on upgrading the kitchen in the school hall and creating a more useable space.

On further investigation, with a building specialist, in order to meet building compliance along with the upgrade, this work would likely cost more than what we have been allocated. We have therefore made the decision not to use the money for the hall upgrade at this stage, but we still recognise that it could be a separate project to work on in the future.

The BOT have decided instead to use the money allocated to remove the bark chips in the two playgrounds areas and install an absorbing playground safety surface. This will not only remove the issue of bark chips getting embedded in the current turf surface but more importantly we hope this will reduce injuries from falling off playground equipment. We are currently looking at quotes and companies and will make a decision at the April meeting.

The BOT has received funding of $6,288 from The Trust Community Foundation for replacing 20 chrome books.

The BOT has also approved money to replace and update our school website, which will be changed to the same company that we use for our school newsletter and school app. This will be great to be able to promote our school for potential new student enrolments and also include essential information for our wider school community.

This Ministry of Education funds the number of teachers based on the number of students enrolled at the school. At the start of the year, the school had less than 151 students. This is the magic number required for us to have 7 classroom teachers. The BOT decided that to keep class numbers down the BOT would fund the 7th teacher until the school had the required number of students. We have now reached this target and look forward to the Ministry now funding the 7th teacher!

If you are interested in reading the BOT minutes, these are currently available from the school office.
Have a great and safe long weekend
Regards - Jolene Ollerenshaw - Board Chair

Teacher Only Day

Our next Teacher Only Day will be Thursday 1 April. This is the day before Easter. School will be closed for instruction on this day. Staff will be working on Positive Behaviour for Learning and Data analysis on this day. Thank you for your understanding.

Welcome to Levi who started in Room 3 this week!

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Whanau and School Update

Easter Raffle Cards – can we please have all raffles returned to school by next Wednesday 24 March. Thank you to everyone who made a donation for the Easter raffle.

AGM FOR WHANAU and SCHOOL is on Wednesday 24th March at 7pm in the Staffroom, all welcome and general meeting will follow.

JINGO NIGHT – if you have any donations for the Jingo evening please get them in asap.

We still need helpers for set up, clean up and a courtesy van driver, please get in touch with Sara on 02102372282 or

Tickets are on sale and selling fast. Confirm your spot now for a fun night. $20 p/p for entry and jingo card, corporate tickets also available includes platter for $30 p/p.

Support Balclutha Primary School by grabbing an Entertainment APP.

2 for 1 offers, special rates and up to 50% off dining, takeaways, shopping, & activities

throughout Southland, Southland, Central Otago, Otago & Oamaru.

Until the 15th April receive a bonus $10 or $20 Countdown or JB HiFi voucher with your purchase.

Valid for 12 months from activation. Downloadable on up to 4 devices.

You can buy online here:

Your support is greatly appreciated!!

Have a great weekend

Whanau and School Co-Presidents

Sara Sutherland and Carleigh Frisby

BPS Cultural Group

We have been making great progress during the term in our Cultural Group. About 70 tamariki are involved in the BPS Cultural Group. This year we are including, waiata, karakia, Te Reo language and tākaro (games) into our weekly sessions. Each week we start with karakia and waiata that the children are encouraged to lead. Ka pai to Jonathan for leading both Karakia and waiata this week.

This week we broke up into kōtiro and tama rōpū (girls and boys groups) where the senior children taught the rest of the group the actions to waiata for the girls and haka for the boys. It is great to see the tuakana, teina relationships continuing to build within the school.

Sports Update

Another busy week of sport. Thank you to all the parents, caregivers and grandparents who supported the children in all sporting activities.

Gymsports festival - term 2

If you are interested in helping coach the children for the gymsports festival please contact Balclutha gymnastics club is holding a workshop on Tuesday 30th March for anyone interested. The workshop will cover skills and routines for the gymsports festival.


A big thanks to Kim Strawbridge and Stan Smith who supervised the children and counted the bike laps at the South Otago Triathlon on Tuesday morning.

Here are the triathlon results:

Year 6 Boys teams

3rd - BPS Blue - Ollie Sapstead, Te Ra Benington, Liam Huddleston

4th - BPS White - Harry Coote, Kade Buchanan, Nata Latta

Year 6 Girls teams

4th - BPS Blue - Aidan Cloete, Lilly Inglis, Angelica Kenworthy

5th - BPS White - Natalia Kinder, Holly Wilson, Tayla Smith

Year 7 individual girls

8th Mabel Ferguson

Year 8 Girls team

8th - BPS Year 8 Girls - Mathafasue Tanuvasa, Molly Paterson, Jade Maber

Room 1 (see pictures below) has been looking at the letter n. They had to make the letter "n" out of objects outside and inside the classroom. They are amazing! 

Room 2 have been finishing off their amazing pictures from Athletics Day, which are hanging in the classroom for their families to see. We’ve also been writing and creating art following a book about the Easter Bunny, and writing about swimming from last week.

Four lucky students went upstairs with different schools on Tuesday for Future Focused learning. They learnt how to use a new app and are excited to teach the rest of Room 3.

Room 5 Reading about and investigating pens and pencils

In Room 6 we were continuing to understand the Zones of Regulation and identify the feelings and emotions that fit in each zone. Here we are playing Zone bingo.

Room 12 children working on their art.

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Click on the links below to read Room 12 pupil's Beth (Family Fun at the Beach) and Lilly's writing (Diving in Rarotonga)

Room 11

Happy Birthday this week to....

  • Toby Knight- 17 March
  • Liam Huddleston - 17 March

  • Chloe Thomson - 19 March

  • Sonny Rolton - 19 March

  • Jaxon Young - 22 March

Upcoming Events to put on your calendar

  • Otago Anniversary - School closed Monday 22 March
  • Whanau and School (PTA) - AGM, School Staffroom - 7pm, 24 March
  • Year 8's HPV vaccinations - 26 March (note change of date)
  • Assembly - 26 March 2.30pm
  • Whanau and School Jingo Quiz Night - Friday 26 March
  • Teacher Only Day - 1 April 2021
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Bank Accounts

  • School Saveloys, sport fees and all camp fundraising - 02 0900 0000 452 00
  • PTA - Whanau and School, fundraising, school uniforms (2nd hand and new) -
  • 03 1734 0006449 00