Forward to a Friend
13 April 2017
Dear Parents and St Mary’s Community

With a heightened media alert about ‘stranger danger' it is a good time to remind your children about safety measures. As mentioned in one news item, a child avoided a potentially traumatic experience by being armed with a family password. The offender upon being asked for the password realised the game was up and fled.
Don’t assume you daughter knows what to do when faced with approaches from strangers. Safety messages need to be reinforced regularly even when the response can be dismissive. Be assured that the message is usually hitting its mark.

I remember when my teenage children were starting to venture out to parties and becoming more independent, we had a code word that would alert us that they needed us to come and get them. We knew if they phoned and spoke about ‘Grandma’, that was the signal that they wanted collecting.

There are simple but effective tips that we need to teach our young adults. And these days we extend the message to not only keeping yourself safe but also looking out for mates. Talk to your daughter about strategies she can call upon if needed. More information and material for discussion can be found at:
We will return after the holidays to a wintry term. I am always concerned about some of our students who are standing out on New Street waiting to be collected by parents in the early evening dark. Last year a student proposed the idea of setting up a “Wait space” and we are going to follow through on this. The “Wait Zone” will be the foyer of the CM hall where students are asked to wait to be collected. It is a safe warm area, well lit and the PTFA has agreed to furnish it with bean bags to make it a comfortable spot to wait. Please arrange with your daughter for this to be the place from which you will collect them.

As we look forward to Easter and the holiday break, take time to remember the message of hope that Easter brings with the Resurrection of Christ Jesus. Let us pray for peace in our world and that there is comfort for those suffering great losses, particularly in Syria.

“Do not abandon yourselves to despair. We are the Easter people and hallelujah is our song”. Pope John Paul II

Happy Easter
Bernadette Stockman
       EXCELLENCE - creating Hauora for one and all
"The simplest and most practical lesson I know is to resolve to be good today, and better tomorrow" - Catherine McAuley
He Inoi: Prayer
In search of Easter light

Me rapu tātou i tōu mata, e te Atua –
your face, Lord, do we seek.
As this Lenten journey unfolds
lead us by your Spirit to see you anew
in our neighbours’ need.
Open our eyes and soften our hearts
by your mercy, to see you beyond our borders
in friends waiting to be met and welcomed.
Give us faith to encounter
those longing to be loved.
May we see the face of Christ
and reflect your love in unexpected ways.
Make us prophets in our times,
able to hear the voices that first reach your ears.
Let Mercy be a power in our world
for standing with fragile communities,
for bringing hope and light.
Let our Easter joy be the blessings we have shared
in Mercy’s name.



Thursday 4 May - 8MSG will be on class Mass this week.

Marianne Bray, Director of Religious Studies


Helena Kohlhase and Olive Keely led 8RLY on their class mission effort to collect Easter eggs for the residents of Mercy Parklands, Sr Sheryl from Mercy Parklands came to St Mary's College to pick them up and was delighted with the donated Easter basket.

mercy2earth weekend


teaching & learning news

I have had a number of phone calls from parents asking questions about NCEA organisation. Please click here for the link to a general page on the NZQA website which gives some basic information. I hope you find it useful. Understanding how NCEA works can be quite challenging, especially if it is your daughter’s first year. Please don’t hesitate to call or email if you would like to discuss any aspect of your daughter's NCEA programme organisation.

Next term Miss Ogden will be the NZQA liaison person at school. Her contact details are Ph 376 6568 ext 701 or
As I am on leave until Term 2 in 2018, I want to wish all girls the very best for their NCEA this year.
 Christine Barlow, Deputy Principal 

school app

Approximately 500 people have downloaded our school app. If you haven’t done so yet follow the below instructions.

To download the app you will need to enter “St Mary’s College Ponsonby”
The newsletters, notices and calendar, Kamar portal, can be accessed via the app.
When your daughter is absent you can notify the school using the app.
Go to the three bars on the side to access maps, alert subscriptions, and information about the app and to enlarge the text.
Subscribe to the groups that you would like alerts for e.g. basketball.
Term dates and additional links are also available for easy access.

Sport Tab - this has links to key websites with sport draws. Access the calendar, then access the particular event. If there is an event that you would like to add to your personal calendar on your phone use the download tab as indicated below.
Click here to access additional information.  Click here to access more helpful tips and an instructional video.

Elena Grant, Deputy Principal


A reminder in Term 2 we change to the winter uniform. To check our uniform requirements are please click here for the link to the school website.

Elena Grant, Deputy Principal


Next term we are trialing a new structure for our school assemblies. On Wednesdays there will be a rotation between Full school assemblies, Junior Assemblies and Senior Assemblies. The students not involved in the Junior or Senior assembly will be doing some other activities such as study skills, careers or talks pertaining to pastoral care eg friendships.

Elena Grant, Deputy Principal

staff changes for TERM 2

Please note the following staff changes for Term 2, 2107.

We thank and farewell Alana Khoo from the Science Department.

Senior Leadership Team 
We send best wishes to Christine Barlow from the Senior Leadership Team who will be on a year's Refreshment Leave beginning Term 2, 2017.  We welcome Teresa Ogden who will be joining the Senior Leadership team while Christine is away.

Bernadette Stockman, Principal

term 2 start

Term 2 begins on Monday 1 May at the normal time. Please note that Year 11 students will be going into their first set of mock examinations in Week 4, 22 May - 25 May.
Have a great Easter and a good holiday break.

Brian Nolan, Deputy Principal

calendar - planning ahead

Just a little forewarning about the major events at the College for 2017. Please mark in your calendars.

Friday, 2 June 2017 - College Ball
Tuesday 15 August 2017 - Option Evening for Years 10-12
Friday 1 September 2017  Mid-term break - School closed
Thursday 28 September 2017 - Cultural Evening
Thursday 26 October 2017 - Leavers Mass & Dinner
Friday 27 October 2017 - Leavers Assembly
Thursday 2 November 2017 - Senior Prizegiving
Friday 3 November 2017 - Thanksgving Mass
Monday 11 December 2017 - Junior Prizegiving

Brian Nolan, Deputy Principal

study group



Pacific Island Leaders Of Tomorrow (PILOT)
Seven of our Year 13 Pasifika students attended the Year 13 PILOT programme last Thursday and had an enjoyable and informative day participating in workshops and meeting key liaison people from various tertiary providers.
Year 12 Students
The holidays are a good time to research and find a Work Experience Placement for 28 & 29 June.  The two forms that were emailed to parents (Permission form and Work Placement Details form) need to be completed and submitted by the 15 May. There is Work Experience information available to help students on the Platform 365 Careers site.

Year 13 Students
The next two terms (particularly Term 3) will be very busy ones with regards to exploring options for 2018 and beyond. Many universities, tertiary providers and industries hold events such as Information Evenings, Expos and Open Days over this time. The holidays could be a good opportunity for students to begin exploring the websites of universities, tertiary providers and training organisations they are interested in, to find out about the courses offered and key dates for open days, information evenings etc. Information is also available on the Platform 365 Careers site which is updated regularly. Please encourage your daughters to be proactive in researching their future options and possibilities.
For your Diary: Below are some key events coming up for senior students.
AUT Student Experience Days 19 - 28 April
These days are an excellent opportunity for students to experience the AUT campus and develop an understanding of what their choice of degree will include. For further details and to register go to
Dunedin Tertiary Open Day Monday 8 May
Otago University and Otago Polytech are welcoming prospective students on campus for the day. Find out about study, student life and living in Dunedin, experience lectures and visit Halls of Residence (Residential Colleges). For more information and a programme for the day go to
Pickering Lectures 16 May 6.30-8pm
Free entry at Auckland Girls Grammar School: For students interested in Engineering: “Writing the Script for the next revolution in Surgery”  Dr Catherine Mohr – a world-leading surgical robotics expert from Silicon Valley – talks about how advances in technology can save lives. Follow the link for further details and to register
University of Waikato Open Day Friday 19 May
Learn about study options, scholarships, university life and lots more. Register to attend by 5 May  
NZ College of Chiropractic Open Day Saturday 20 May
12.30pm- 3.30pm. Find out about study pathways and careers in Chiropractic. Booking is essential. RSVP to
University of Canterbury Info Evening Thursday 25 May
6.30pm ASB Showgrounds. Information about degrees, scholarships, accommodation and more visit
Careers Expo 25 – 27 May
ASB Showgrounds, free admission. The Careers Expo provides young people with a valuable opportunity to make important connections as they plan their careers. A wide range of exhibitors from employers, industry, tertiary providers, training institutes, government departments and corporate NZ will be there for you to meet and talk to. For more information go to
AFS New Zealand Around the World Travel Expo Sunday 28 May
6.15pm St Marks Church Hall 95 Remuera Road. Hear returnees talk about their experiences and about the Go Kiwi gap programme. Register to attend by contacting

Judith Adams, Careeers

lego - donation plea

We are looking for some lego to enhance our proposed ROBOTICS resources. If you have any lego you or your children no longer use we would really love to be able to use it here at school. Please drop it off to the school office or T3 (for students to drop off). Thank you.

Debbie Morrow, Faculty Leader, Technology

year 8 camp

The Year 8 camp is in full swing and despite the weather conditions the students are enjoying all the activities.  

Brian Nolan, Deputy Principal 

Graduation Gala Concerto Competition

Joella Pinto (1st on the left), a distinguished alumnus of St. Mary's College and current itinerant teacher of violin, has been selected as one of three finalists to perform in the University of Auckland Grad Gala Concerto Competition, with a total prize pool of $15,000.

This free concert will take place on Thursday, 4 May at the Auckland Town Hall at 7.30pm, and attendees need to register in advance.  Joella will be performing the 1st movement of Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto. We encourage students and families to attend and show St. Mary's College support for a former student.

To register and for more information, click here for the events page.

Ben Zilber, HOD Academic Music and Rachel Snelling, HOD Instrumental Music

science - specialised cells

Year 7 students have been learning about plant and animal cells this term. 7SGN have been teaching each other about how these cells work. In this picture there are 3D models of a Nerve cell, Palisade (leaf) cell, White Blood cell, Root Hair cell and Ciliated cell.  Can you guess which is which?

Sheherazad Bhote, Science Teacher

What does our future college look like?

St Mary’s College extensively reviews its charter every 3-5 years, the last being completed in 2015. An interim review is to be conducted by St Mary's College Board of Trustees who will be considering future trends that could affect the school.

If you have expertise in facilitating such a review please contact Suey Bignall, BOT Secretary,

Craig Brownie, BOT Chairperson

Article Heading

Students can register by clicking here  to attend a FREE seminar to listen to ‘Doctor Robot: Writing the Script for the next revolution of surgery’.
It is in Auckland on Tuesday 16 May 6.30pm – 8.00pm

Join Dr Catherine Mohr – a world-leading surgical robotics expert from Silicon Valley – as she talks about how advances in technology can save lives. 

Debbie Morrow, Faculty Leader, Technology


Some students in Year 9 and 10 French enjoy an end of term escargot or two - a delightful blend of garlic, onion, butter and...snail!!

Priscilla Lynch, Faculty Leader Languages

photo orders from photolife

Your daughter has been given her individual Shoot Key to order her photo, sibling photo and Form Class photo. Photos can be viewed online at  The “Free Delivery” deadline date is 30th April for the photos to be delivered free of charge to the school.
Mavis Thorpy, Teacher in Charge of School Photos

sport at st mary's in term 1


Sports Fees
A reminder that all sports fees are overdue.  Reminders will be sent out over the holidays if you have not paid.  If there are any problems, please contact the Sports office.
Tennis wrapped up last weekend for the term.  We were able to field 4 competitive teams in the inter-school competition and had over 60 girls participate in the Beginner sessions.  Thank you to all team managers who looked after our 4 teams each Saturday.  Congratulations to the Junior White team who finished first in their pool;  Bideah Bruce, Fionnuala Omeri, Bridie Rooney-Allison (captain) Charlotte Squire, Ella Satherley, Kate Garland, Tayla MacDonald and Lily Kelly.

The Orienteering team also wrapped up their Summer sprint series with a morning tea this week.  Look out for further events coming up. 

Intermediate teams first playing day is Tuesday 9 May. 
All other teams first playing day is Saturday 6 May. 

Pesio Matiseni, Sports Co-ordinator

groundsman - vacancy - st mary's college

Groundsman Part time – St Mary’s College – 8-10 hours per week, school terms only

We are looking for an energetic person to work 8-10 hours per week, term time only to keep grounds tidy, manage rubbish and to undertake any additional duties as may reasonably be required.

A Police Vet check will be required. Applicants need to have good interpersonal skills & be able to work in a team environment. Please complete the non-teaching application form on our website - (Community/Staff Vacancies) and send with a covering letter & CV to

Bernadette Stockman, Principal

event sponsers needed - meet the makers

Become an Event Sponsor at Meet the Makers!

Event Naming Rights, Gold and Silver Sponsorship Packages available.  As a Meet the Makers 2017 Sponsor, you will receive great branding opportunities for your business and the chance to engage with the St Mary’s College community.  For more information, email Jacob Sheehan at or phone (09) 376 6568 ext 733.

Jacob Sheehan, Development Manager


UPDATE - 2nd Meet the Makers Newsletter  - CLICK HERE!!!

Please click here for the 1st Meet the Makers Newsletter.

St Mary’s PTFA  - pop-café  Freemans Bay Art Mart

St Mary’s PTFA is running a pop-café at the Freemans Bay Art Mart
When - 29 April 2017
Time - 10.00am – 3.00pm (Art Mart closes 4.00pm)
Where - Freemans Bay Community Centre

The Art Mart will have: original art, prints, pottery, linen, sculptures, garden art, crafts and jewelry. The Art Mart is hosted by Rotary Westhaven.
What the Café will have - We will serve tea, coffee, Oratia 100% apple juice, hot and cold savouries and delicious home baked scones, cupcakes, biscuits, loaves and slices.
Activities at the Café - Kids activity table.
On display - St Mary's College student art on display (not for sale).
Special bonus - St Mary's College girls will be busking to raise funds for their Brisbane trip.
Café profits are earmarked for outdoor shade and seating at St Mary's College.


dove catholic fellowship

stabat mater

The grieving Mother stood weeping beside the
cross where her Son was hanging
A Choral Music offering for Good Friday.
7 pm, Good Friday, 14th  April at St Patrick’s
Cathedral. Featuring the Age of Discovery
Vocal Ensemble directed by James Tibbles. 
Entry is free. A retiring collection will be taken.
Validated parking will be available at the Wilson’s Car Parks on Hobson St ($4) and Durham Lane ($2




Thursday 13 April

2 June 

12 August


Term 1 - 31.1.17-13.4.17
Term 2 - 1.5.17-7.7.17
Term 3 - 24.7.17 - 29.9.17
Term 4 - 16.10.17-11.12.17

11 New Street, Ponsonby,
Auckland, New Zealand Telephone (09) 376 6568 Facsimile (09) 376 0206

Whats in the newsletter this week?
*Meet the Makers 2nd newsletter
*Assembly changes
*Groundsman vacancy
*Winter uniform
*NCEA assessments
*Term 2 start date
*PTFA Art Mart
*Careers update
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Telephone (09) 376 6568
Facsimile (09) 376 0206

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