Principal's Pānui - 2 September 2022
Parent Tutor Meetings
Last week we welcomed parents and caregivers into the school to meet with tutor teachers. It was wonderful be able to again have meetings with whānau kanohi ki te kanohi. It presented an opportunity to discuss the progress of our students, look ahead to setting goals, and provide guidance on subject selection for the following year.
My thanks to Wiri Warriner for his organistion of the two days. The decision to condense all interviews into one area of the School proving a success for parents and teachers alike.
Science Fair Success
Twenty-five schools from across the Auckland Region recently took part in the NIWA Auckland Science Fair. Students from Massey High School were among those who submitted projects. Head of Science, Elsie Combrinck was present on Thursday night to celebrate the success of our students who were prizewinners.
Liam Taylor received a prize and a Highly Commended for his project on cheese. Daniel Baker and Nate Bartholemew received Highly Commended for their project on the desalination of water. Congratulations to all.
The selection process for Gold Badge Prefects begins next week. Thank you to Hayley Garratt who has taken on this role (and will no doubt run it better than I used to). The first stage of this process is a ‘meet and greet’ for those students who have applied to be Head Prefects. From here, the first shortlisting will occur. Those who make the first cut will present to Year 12 at a special assembly. This is then followed by a rigorous panel interview. A reminder, students have made applications for more than one leadership position. This means that, if unsuccessful in their application for Head Prefect, they are still in consideration for other positions applied for.
This process runs in conjunction with our Deans beginning the selection process for House Leaders for next year.
Prefects and House Leaders for 2023 will be announced at Senior Prizegiving. Our Silver Badge Prefect selection process commences in the first few weeks of next year.
Our Senior Exam window is on the horizon (weeks 8 and 9). These exams are of huge importance for our senior students (Years 11 to 13) as they provide a key indicator of their progress thus far and highlighting areas that require further work.
For many, there are also dedicated slots throughout the exam window for subject specific catch-ups. Given the rolling disruptions through the year caused by COVID, these catch-up sessions allow students to engage with assessment opportunities that they may have missed through illness or isolation.
All senior students (and their caregivers) have been emailed with a personalised exam/catch-up timetable. We remind caregivers and students that attendance at these exams is compulsory.
This year, we will be targeting our Year 11 students to trial a real-time attendance follow up. Our Year 11 students are experiencing formal examinations for the first time and we will be trialling measures to ensure that these students are aware of the importance of attending and attempting their examinations. For those students who do not arrive in time for their examination, caregivers will be contacted by text, with a follow up phone call to follow so that arrangements can be made for that student to still sit the examination. A special assembly will be held next week for Year 11 to inform them of the process that will be followed.
It is important that our students are acutely aware of the importance of these exams. In the absence of unexpected event grades this year, these exams serve as evidence should derived grades be required.
We have a number of students across Years 12 and 13 who will sit Scholarship at the end of the year. The critical thinking, and depth of answer required for Scholarship differs to Level 2 and 3 NCEA examinations, and correct preparation is crucial. Thanks to Carol Bashford and Ben Strickland our students sitting Scholarship this year have had a series of preparatory workshops, the most recent of which was held this week. This included hearing from former student Jessica Woodhams (Dux 2020) who was successful in 5 Scholarship exams (two Outstanding). Jessica was in this week to share her insight, tips, and advice for those students on this pathway.
This week we have had five teams out competing at various tournaments. Our Girls and Boys Hockey Teams have been in Whakatāne, Girls Football in Rotorua, Premier Netball in Pakuranga, and Curling in Avondale. I managed to get across to Pakuranga midweek as our netballers earned a hard fought draw against Kerikeri High School. Unfortunately, given the distances involved I was unable to go down the line to see other teams in action – but reports back indicate that our students have thoroughly enjoyed the experience, and have been superb ambassadors for Massey High School, and for their whānau. I would like to thank our Nikki Witehira and Georgie Simmons for the mahi required to get these teams to tournament. Tournament Week also requires members of staff to give their time, and I would like to thank Callandra Field, Emma Soons, Tina Chisolm, and Eleanor Adviento without whom our students would be unable to participate. Likewise, our parent volunteers have proved invaluable.
The opportunity to compete in events such as this is one that I’d like to see more students take up next year.
Thursday 8th September sees the welcome return of our Cultural Night. One of our strengths has always been our diversity, and this years Cultural Night serves as a very real celebration of this. This year the evening will see performances from the following groups:
- Kapa Haka
- Cook Island
My thanks to our staff Cultural Coordinators, Teresa Kanuta and Protester Faiva for their planning of the evening, and to those staff members who give their time to allow each group to practice and perform Jane Setchell, Rihab Eed, Grace Fusitu'a, Hone Tobin, and Victor Kalolo. Special thanks to those tutors and parents who dedicate countless hours ensuring that each group is able perform to the highest standard.
The Cultural Night will be held in the Bruce Ritchie Performing Arts Centre. Tickets are limited and will sell out fast, they can be purchased online