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Waitaki Valley School 
Newsletter


31st August 2016
 

Tena koutou katoa, greetings.

I want to remind you about the Teacher Union meeting next Thursday (8th September).  School will be open as usual, however buses will run 2 1/2 hours later, and there will only be a 'skeleton' staff on board from the beginning of the day.  Please make sure that if you haven't already, that you get the form back informing us of your intentions of your child/ren on this day.  We will be staffed accordingly, and usual classes will resume when teachers return at 11.30.

The current political challenges on our education system are of significant concern for us as educators and should also be for you as parents and community members.  While this union meeting is about the current review of funding underway (with the intentions that staffing for teachers will changed radically), there are further concerns that are running alongside this.

Are you aware that the current government are intending on shifting the current funding for Special Needs?  We are not sure of the implications that this will have on Primary schools however we do know that funds will be redirected from older children to younger children.

Are you aware that the new 'COOLS' (Communities of Online Learning) where families can choose to educate their children at home and online, may well be administered and delivered by non educationalists? In the 21st Century we certainly support the role in online learning to support learning opportunities, however there is no doubt (and while the research supports this, I'm sure you will agree) that education is a social event, one in which the interaction of others - teachers, peers and others, have an influence and role in educating our youngsters to be successful in the world.  The 'COOLS' are an untried social experiment.

Are you aware that in May the government has placed a freeze on components of our Operations funding - the parts that pay for support staff wages and essential school running costs? Obviously the running costs don't freeze because our funding has, so this money now needs to come by reducing the learning costs (ie resources) that directly effect teaching programmes.  And why shouldn't Support Staff be acknowledged with a pay scale that recognises their role in our schools?

It seems a bit heavy - and given the chance I could continue further - but hopefully my point is clear - there are so many external challenges being put upon us as educators, that it really requires more than just teachers to be voicing their concerns.  I urge you to read any media statements on education policy and reform.  While you might initially think that it is a Wellington issue that doesn't directly affect you and your children, the reality is that all of these reforms are having a direct effect on ALL schools and MANY students across NZ.  Please stay interested and informed.

On a much brighter note - we can celebrate our Jump Jam team again being selected for the National Finals. Well done to Miss Bremner and her team.  We also wish Fynlay Bishop and Sam Chilton all the best as they represent our school at the Otago Cross Country Champs in Dunedin on Friday.

Tomorrow Mrs Jepson and myself are attending a day at Waitaki Girls' High School, where most of the Primary Schools and all Secondary Schools in Oamaru are getting together to talk through the processes of transitioning children from our Primary settings through to the Secondary settings.  This has never happened before and to have all of these people in the one room aligning our understandings of what happens in each others' schools will be important in supporting our children to be successful at High School, regardless of whether it is an Oamaru school, or a school in another area.

We hosted another group of 5 teachers yesterday from a Timaru school.  The feedback that they gave us about our children and our learning spaces was very positive and they were very grateful for the time that they were able to spend in our school. 

Our Writing Book that will be published in Term 4 is generating a number of sponsors to support the printing of it.  If you know of any other businesses who may wish to support this by purchasing advertising space, then please let us know.

Have a great week

ASSEMBLY CERTIFICATES THIS WEEK . . .
CLASS AWARDS:
Mahutonga:     Quinn Gledhill and Jessica Solomon
Pukepuke:       Carlos Scadden and Scott Hay
Moana:            Ben Thomas
Hauwhenua:    Ben Gray

PRINCIPAL'S AWARD: Ellie Scotland
CANCER SOCIETY 

MERCHANDISE STILL FOR SALE


We now have Oscar the Daffodil Bear for sale at the school office.

$10 each

If you could let Michelle know if you wish to order one and have your money to the office by Friday 2nd September.
There are still some outstanding slips for:
  • the Paid Union Meeting on September 8th,
  • the Community Oral Heath Consent form
These need to be returned to the office ASAP.
The Jump Jam team the 'Waitaki Bobs' have made it to the South Island Regional competition in Christchurch on Saturday 29th October.
Miss Bremner will get information about this trip in due course.
"Waitaki Bob has come with us to Pembroke School in Oamaru so I can do my reading and writing."
 By Shay Warwick
YEAR 5 & 6, 7 & 8
EDUCATION OUTSIDE THE CLASSROOM 

In the first week of Term 4 our Tuakana students will be heading away on their EOTC programmes - also known as camps!  We are excited this year that our Yr 7 & 8s are heading to Wainui at Akaroa from 10th-14th October, while our Yr 5 & 6 children will be heading to Camp Iona at Herbert from 12th-14th October.

We are grateful to the Friends of the School for their contribution to support our camps. The fundraising that has taken part has also contributed to reduce the costs, bringing the cost of camps to just $55 for Yrs 5 &6, and $200 for Yrs 7 &8.  (These costs are both less than half of what it actually costs to run the camp).  Invoices were sent out earlier this week.

We ask that camps are please paid for in full by WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 21st.  These can be paid as a lump sum, or 'drip fed' over the next 3 weeks. If this creates difficulty for you - please see your child's teacher, or Mrs Senior. 
 
Aoraki spent yesterday afternoon in the garden with Bianca.  They tasted some of the salad vegetables and herbs, before digging the compost over and watering the rest of the garden. Here are some photos of them in action!
School Vision: 
We are currently working with a Curriculum Advisor from the University of Otago to review our curriculum programmes.  A review of our school wide vision and direction has resulted from this.  We are interested in hearing your ideas, about our school.  The questions relate to values that we can share in 'child speak', what you ultimately want your children to leave Waitaki Valley with, and the gathering of some ideas about a 'slogan' that we could use.  Thank you to those of you who have already contributed to this.  The survey will remain open until tomorrow - Sept 1st.  Please take the time to share your thinking here.  Again - we will have a lucky prize draw for someone who completes this for us.
Thursday 1 September     Kids For Kids Concert - Oamaru
Thursday 8 September     Paid Teacher's Union Meeting
                                          Buses running 2 1/2 hours late
Friday 9 September          Yr 8 Rural Schools' Career Day
Monday 19 September     BOT Meeting
Tuesday 20 September    Ski Race Day  (Please note date change)
Friday 23 September        End of Term
Netball Draw Saturday 3rd September 2016
 
Kurow Red vs OIS Steel - 9:45am BNZ

Year 5 & 6's vs North Magic 9:45am Fitness 24
Youthtown are running a holiday programme in Oamaru these school holidays.
26th September - 7th October
If you would like further information please contact Michelle at the school office.
Riverside Football (Soccer) Club wish to thank players and their families, schools and coaches for their support during another successful season. It has been wonderful to see nine strong teams out there and active allowing children from Twizel, Omarama, Otematata, Hakataramea, Kurow, Duntroon and Papakaio (and a few in between) the opportunity to unite over a competitive and fun game.
 
Special congratulations to the Riverside Hammers Intermediate Grade for being overall winners of their grade when they still had four games to play.
 
Riverside Club wish to acknowledge the generous support of Network WaitakiMeridian and SPARC travel fund. They have provided equipment, uniforms and travel assistance to help us keep costs to families to a minimum.
 
We look forward to celebrating the success of all players at our prizegiving on Saturday 10th of September at Duntroon Domain at 1:30 pm.
 
Check out our Facebook page – search Riverside Junior Football Club.

Due to line maintenance the following areas will experience a power outage on Tuesday 6th September between 3:30pm and 4:30pm: all of Kurow, except residents living west of Grey St and those living in Freyberg Avenue.
Waitaki Valley School
1 Settlement Road
KUROW
Principal: Deidre Senior

Important numbers: 
School phone: 03 4360 660
Absences: School Mobile Text: 0277142774
School Bank Account: 02 0900 0000532 00

 
office@waitakivalley.school.nz






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Waitaki Valley School · 1 Settlement Road · Kurow, Otago 9435 · New Zealand

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