Principal's Pānui - 19 August 2022
A slightly shorter newsletter this week.
On Wednesday we held our latest NCEA Accord Day. The focus of the day was on junior courses and resources that would better prepare students for changes in NCEA requirements. Part of the day was set aside for faculties to work on digitising aspects of their knowledge books, transitioning them closer to being vibrant, engaging, interactive learning materials. There was effort expended on ensuring greater consistency across subject areas and ensuring that they are easily accessible for our students within Microsoft Teams. The collaboration between faculty areas was great to see throughout the day.
Unfortunately, our First XV had an untimely stumble in their semi-final against Manurewa High School. They played well, but sport being sport, it just wasn’t to be on the day. The game was marred by a serious injury scare involving one of our players which required the game to move to a different field as we waited on an ambulance. It was incredibly moving to see how the team rallied around the player and sang and shared stories to keep his morale up. Luckily, following a visit to the hospital it has been confirmed that there was no break or fracture.
I am incredibly proud of their season though, and incredibly proud of how they have conducted themselves throughout – whether it be on match days, at trainings, supporting other teams, helping out with projects, but most importantly how they conduct themselves around the school. They have been outstanding role models for younger sports people in the school this year.
On Wednesday afternoon I had the pleasure of seeing two more of our teams in action. Despite the driving rain, our Football Girls First XI defeated Birkenhead College 3-1. It was wonderful seeing how much these footballers enjoy their game. Later that evening I was at the Albany Hockey Centre (managed to get undercover this time, unlike when I went to see the Girls team play) for the First XI Hockey Boys as they played for first place in their division against Rangitoto College. I was hugely impressed with this team. It is made up of a range of players from Year 9 through to a few ‘old heads’ in Year 13 – despite this range, they gel as a truly cohesive unit. With our Year 13s leaving at the end of the year, the rest of the team are well placed to keep building on what is a solid platform of good young players. Most impressive was the culture in the team and being able to see their coach Randal Bartholomew in action. Randal was calm, supportive, and really understood how each member of the team would respond to instruction or guidance. It was apparent that the boys all know how luck they are to have such a coach. In the end, they did concede the final 2-1, but they did themselves, and their considerable parent support proud.
Some of our Academy students have been taking part in an initiative organised by our Academy Prefects – the initiative involves making planter/garden boxes for use by the Arohanui School (who have a campus on-site with us). It is always great to see our students forging closer links with members of our community.
On this note, thank you to Mrs van der Kraaij who has been overseeing our Level 3 Tourism Plus students who are also undertaking community projects. Their projects are based around the concept of Tiaki Promise (Keep New Zealand Clean, Protect New Zealand Nature and Show Respect). Destiny Mongpraneet and Paige Knauf made use of the Accord Day on Wednesday to visit Lincoln Heights Primary School. They worked with a group of 20 Year 5/6 students to help plant some native Psedopanax bushes. As the bushes grow, they will help provide more privacy to that area of the school as it is very close to nearby houses. They will be presenting their project at Auckland Zoo next Wednesday.
Our Community Gym project took another step this week, with an additional $90,000 of equipment arriving. The equipment complements what is already onsite, this is used by our PE Department as they incorporate the Thrive Nation programme. It is also used by a number of our teams for strength and conditioning training and will eventually be available to the community as well.
The Week Ahead
Our Under 14 and Under 15 Rugby Teams play their final games of their season in the Auckland Competition this weekend. Both teams are kicking off at the same as each other on our top field. The young men in both teams have grown considerably through the course of the season and I am looking forward to seeing them play their season closers. I will also be heading across to Te Pai to see the final games for our Year 10 Netball Teams.
Visit from Rolleston College
Some may remember Rachel Skelton who used to be a Dean at Massey High School. Next week we welcome Rachel home as she visits as Principal of Rolleston College. Rachel is bringing some members of her Senior Leadership Team to see the work that our Academy Programmes do and the pathways they provide for a number of our students.
Remember, nominations have closed and voting papers have been posted out. All voting forms must be received by the school by 4pm on 7 September 2022.
Parent Tutor Meetings
Our first on-site Parent Tutor meetings take place on Thursday and Friday next week. This is an opportunity for whānau and tutors to connect and discuss both progress and aspirations, there will also be opportunities to discuss option choices and pathways for those students returning to Massey High School next year. All interviews are 20 minutes long, and all take place in the Bruce Candy Science Block. All whānau now have the ability to book their meeting times with tutors (instructions elsewhere in the newsletter). Our tutors will also be making contact with parents in the days leading up to the interviews.
These meetings then dovetail into Futures Week (Week 6) which focuses on student option choices.
We look forward to seeing as many parents and caregivers as possible across those two days.