Tēnā koutou katoa. Nga mihi atawhai nui.
Nau mai – it is now the first week in Term 4. I would like to welcome two new members of our Senior Leadership team.
Mr Graham Atkinson is returning to us as Deputy Principal, Learning Organisation. Graham previously taught here as a Maths teacher about 5 years ago. He was HOD Maths at both Kristen School and more recently, Westlake Girls. Graham is taking over from Sheryl Henderson who resigned from this position at the end of last Term.
Mrs Elizabeth Walker has many years of experience in senior leadership positions in both Auckland and Hamilton. For the past 3 years she has been teaching Year 8. Liz will be taking over the relief and Health and Safety portfolios.
I am sure you will all make them feel very welcome in their new roles when we get to meet in person again.
It has been a tricky week to start in these new roles, as we navigate the latest Government announcements about schools returning to onsite learning for our senior students. We are putting in place all the practical health measures that are required to ensure the safety of both our students and staff.
We understand that this is quite an anxious time for students and their whānau. Some will be worried about returning to school and increasing the health risk, having to weigh that up against staying home but not able to participate in face to face learning. What I can assure you is that we are making every endeavour to make it as safe as we can for the return to onsite learning – compulsory mask wearing, keeping classrooms as ventilated as possible, sanitiser, and maintaining social distancing as much as possible are the main ones.
What we can’t do is continue teaching online while simultaneously teaching onsite. If a student does not attend onsite, may I suggest that those students nominate a study buddy for each of their classes to take notes on their behalf. Teachers will still be posting material online for all students to access. I acknowledge that this is not ideal for those students who are not attending in person but there is no other practical way we can manage these circumstances. All of our staff will continue to ensure that our students are well prepared for these upcoming external examinations. For our Year 7-10 students, online learning will continue.
We keep each and every one of you in our prayers as we navigate these next steps.
Hope lights a candle behind every cloud.
Faith holds firm in every storm.
Love makes a difference – and makes trust possible.