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Term 3, Week 1 2016

Welcome to Term 3 everyone. It was great to see excited kids rushing in the doors on Monday morning, obviously pleased to be back with their friends and teachers.
A special welcome to new families to our school - we are confident you will be pleased to be part of Team Hokowhitu! Always ask if you are unsure or concerned about something, as we want to do our best to communicate well with you and have a strong home/school partnership.

I am delighted to be back ‘at my desk’ following last term’s sabbatical. Over the time, I completed school visits and research into ways to support effective personalised learning in both flexible learning spaces and single cell classrooms. I now look forward to sharing my learning with the staff so we can further develop learners that are confident, connected, actively involved, life long learners!

My sincere thanks to our Board of Trustees who supported my sabbatical application. Special thanks go to Sam Bradnock (ably supported by Helen Griffin, Juls Honore and the rest of the staff) who kept the school running so effectively. 

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Term 2, Week 10, 2016

We have now approached the end of Term 2. I think it has been a fun- filled, engaging and enjoyable term here at Hokowhitu School. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time as Acting Principal this term. It has been challenging but very rewarding. It has also been excellent learning for me, and a superb insight into what it takes to be a Principal at a highly successful school. I must thank my staff here for all their hard work and commitment this term. I have taught in a number of schools in a number of countries and continue to praise the staff here at Hokowhitu School. They are the best collection of professional, energetic and quality classroom practitioners I have had anything to do with in education. Juls and Helen have been a fantastic sounding board for me and want to acknowledge all their help this term. My final thanks must go to all the children, parents and Board of Trustees of Hokowhitu School. I have received a number of positive comments on how the term has gone and really appreciate the feedback. I hope you all have a great break. I’m looking forward to a good break, time to relax and unwind, hopefully even win a couple of FitBit challenges as I will hopefully keep myself active and outside. I will be found again next term back in my old office, which after this term will take a bit of adjustment but it will be fine. Have a safe, enjoyable and relaxing break and I look forward to seeing you all again after the holidays. 

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Term 2, Week 9, 2016

The term is flying by and next week is our last week of Term 2. It has been an enjoyable term despite the weather being rather wet in recent times. You will now see that the pavilion on Te Kete Tangaroa is now complete. This is going to provide another great space for learning to occur both in the winter and summer months. Also this will provide a great place for outside assemblies and our Christmas Prize Giving at the end of this year. Thank you to all those people who read last week’s rant about parking and I’m happy to say that we have noticed a marked improvement. Te Kete Pounamu is in its final stages and with the external decks complete now just waiting on the completion of the roof structure and footpaths. Internally it is almost complete and looks fantastic. 

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Term 2, Week 8, 2016

The winter solstice has been and gone so we are officially on the road to summer once again. I know that I’m probably tempting fate but if this is the worst that winter is going to throw at us I’m pretty happy. I must congratulate all of the children who represented Hokowhitu School at the recent Interschool Cross Country. All of the students gave it their best effort. Special congratulations must go to George B from Te Kete Tangaroa who won the Year 6 Boys race which backs up his first place in last year’s Year 5 race – awesome effort George. Thank you to all of you for the donations in today’s ‘Just Zilch’ mufti day. We will be delivering the goods to Zilch at the beginning of next week along with the monetary donation. 

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Term 2, Week 7, 2016

This term is flying by now already at the end of week seven. It’s been nice to have rather settled weather also which has helped the children to play during breaks and it has also sped up the couple of construction projects we have on the go. I can now confirm that the new building to be known as ‘Te Kete Pounamu’ will be ready for operation on day one of Term 3. Having been in there yesterday the space looks amazing with the carpet tiling and joinery being installed this week. The rain we have had has hindered the outdoors part of the project and the area outside Tararua 1 has become a mud pit due to heavy machinery. I must commend the staff and students of Tararua 1 for their maturity, as I know how enticing it must be for 5 and 6 year olds to have a great old time in lots of mud accessible to them on their classroom doorstep.

I can also announce that we have appointed Laura Flaus to take over from Mrs Handcock in Term 3. Laura is an experienced educator who has experience in both primary and early childhood sectors. She is going to be a great addition to the Te Kete Pounamu team with Mrs Mildenhall and Miss Coley in Term 3 and we look forward to having her as part of the team here at Hokowhitu School. 

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