Newsletter 9 May 2022

Newsletter – 9 May 2022
Nau mai haere mai, Greetings | Tena Koutou | Talofa Lava | Malo e Lelei | Namaste | Ni sa bula | Noaia’e mauri | Fakalofa lahi atu | Kia Orana | Asalam Alykum | Ni Hao | Konnichiwa | An Nyung Ha Sai Yo | Nay Ho | Goeie Môre | Привет

It is great to be back knowing that the staff ably led by Mrs Sue Kandasamy have done an amazing job under what can only be described as challenging circumstances.  The challenges of Covid-19 pandemic continue as it impacts on the cost of living, work and our way of life.  At Pakuranga Heights we will make changes as and when needed, to face any new challenges, especially with winter on the doorstep.

Road Safety Week New Zealand

This Week Is Road Safety Week New Zealand

May 9, 2022 – May 15, 2022. This year, it coincides with the UN’s Global Road Safety Week. 

What is Road Safety Week? 

In New Zealand, Road Safety Week is an event that is promoted by Brake, the road safety charity.  Road Safety Week was first started by Brake in 2012 as an annual, community event that aims to spread awareness of the dangers of the road. As well as working to educate and inform the public in the hope of preventing crashes, the charity also supports the victims of road traffic accidents and bereaved families. Through Road Safety Week Brake aims to encourage communities to take action on road safety and promote life-saving messages. Organisations that get involved in Road Safety Week include schools, youth clubs, corporate employers, sports clubs, local councils, driving instructors and more get. 

What is the theme for Road Safety Week?     

Last year, the theme of Road Safety Week 2021 was speed. This year’s theme will be Road Safety Heroes. The theme for this year celebrates the great work that has been put in by road safety professionals across the country from designers of safer roads to carers of people after crashes. It also places a focus on how every one of us can play a part in making the roads in New Zealand safer for everyone. 

How to participate in Road Safety Week 2022?                                                                 

There are a number of ways you and your child can participate in Road Safety Week this year. 

  1. Help and remind your children about road safety. 
  2. Start a discussion at the dinner table or in the car about why road safety matters.
  3. Celebrate the work of professionals who work towards reducing casualties. 
  4. Celebrate the people who care for victims of road crashes. 
  5. Speak up for the universal right to make safe journeys in your own neighbourhood. 
  6. Equip your child with the skills they require to be safe on the road. For example, teach them how to cross a road. 
  7. Reminder – Orange Traffic Light 

At Orange, face masks are no longer mandated at school, however, public health advice is that mask wearing continues to be strongly encouraged when indoors. 

It has been great to see a large number of senior school students wearing masks inside.  Wearing a mask is a key health measure that slows the spread of COVID-19 in indoor settings. For that reason, we ask that visitors to the school, including parents and whānau, wear a mask whenever they are indoors on school grounds.

Students are encouraged to wear masks in the classroom; teachers will support students who choose to continue wearing a mask. We also ask that your child (if they are in Year 4, Year 5 or Year 6) continue to bring a mask to school every day unless they have an exemption. There may be times that we will ask them to wear a mask, for example, if a number of classes are gathering. If there are a high number of Covid cases at school or in the community, we will revisit the requirements here at Pakuranga Heights.

We continue to keep all the other health measures in place at school that we know slows the spread of COVID-19. These include ensuring our indoor spaces are well-ventilated, maintaining good hand hygiene and cough and sneeze etiquette, appropriate physical distancing whenever we can and, most importantly, staying home if we are sick. 


What is Seesaw?

Last year we introduced Seesaw across the school. Seesaw is a digital platform for student engagement that inspires students of all ages to do their best. Students use creative tools to take pictures, draw, record videos and more to capture learning in a portfolio. Together on Seesaw, we can support and celebrate learning inside and outside the classroom.

Makes your child’s thinking and learning visible, allowing us to see and celebrate their growth over time

Opens communication between home and school, so we can share ideas best support your child’s learning at home and at school

Gives your child an authentic audience for their work — you! — which motivates them to do their best

If you have not already, you will soon receive an invitation from your child’s teacher to connect to your child’s learning on the Seesaw Family app.

Follow the instructions for connecting and using the Seesaw Family app or watch this intro to Seesaw video.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact your child’s teacher.


No Large Assemblies This Term

We are avoiding having large number of students gathering so assemblies will continue virtually this term.   


Bullying-Free New Zealand Week 16-20 May

Empower students to take the lead and prevent bullying behaviour.

This year’s theme is He Kōtuinga mahi iti, he hua pai-ā rau – Small ripples create big waves. Below is some great advice form the Bully Free NZ website

If everybody says something, we can change everything.

Why is this important? 

It is important to talk about bullying and not let it live or grow in silence. Talking about it shines a light on it and stops bullying from being hidden or ignored. If you are being bullied or know that someone else is being bullied, tell someone you trust. You might think it will make it worse, but doing nothing will not help it go away.

Now’s good, later’s good. It is not when we speak up, it’s that we do.

Why is this important?

There are no magic words to support someone who is being bullied.

There are a range of ways you can help and support someone who is being bullied and they depend on the situation. Sometimes it feels too hard to say something at the time, but you can still make a real difference by reaching out afterwards.

No one wants a box of crayons all the same colour. Be You

Why is this important? 

Just like crayons, we are all a little different. We live different lives and have different ideas, interests and experiences. Together we make the world a more vibrant place! If we were all the same, the world would be much duller. We are all unique and we all matter. Learning to accept and celebrate our differences (as well as our similarities) makes the world brighter! It is important that we have space to be ourselves and to feel safe.

Kindness costs nothing but means everything.

Why is this important?

Showing kindness to others and ourselves can create a chain reaction. When kindness becomes expected and normal then bullying is less likely to happen. Even the smallest acts of kindness can change how someone is feeling. 

One of the best things is that when we spread kindness, we feel just as good as the person we are being kind too. There is also a great whakataukī that you could use to spread the message of kindness.

He aroha whakatō, he aroha puta mai. 

If kindness is sown then kindness you shall receive.

Let my voice shape my now

As young people, they have a unique and important voice to share. They understand what works best for young people. They can help adults around you learn from you too. When they get involved encourage them to share their thoughts, ideas and feedback, they can make a real difference.

What is bullying?

We hear the word bullying a lot. What is really important is that we understand what it is (and what it is not). 

When we all have a shared understanding of bullying, we can recognise it, deal with it when it happens and most of all stop it from happening in the first place.

Bullying is harmful.

It hurts and some people carry it with them for their whole life. It is not normal and it is not part of growing up. Other things can hurt too (like teasing, having an argument or fighting) but they do not normally happen repeatedly. They still need to be dealt with so that they feel happy and safe.

What can I do if I see bullying?

When we speak to people that have been bullied, many of them remember that it felt like no-one helped them. They felt alone and that nobody cared.

There is no perfect thing to say or do if you see someone being bullied that will make everything magically get better.

Remember the key message:

“If everyone says something, we can change everything”. 

What matters is that we do say SOMETHING. When we do nothing, the message we send is that what is happening is ok (and it isn’t).

Bullying is done on PURPOSE; there is nothing “accidental” or unplanned about bullying.

It is a PATTERN; it happens over and over again.

It is all about POWER; one person (or a group) has more control and influence than their target.

Please encourage your child to talk to their teacher ring or you as a parent or guardian come and see us or ring if you have any concerns. The sooner we deal with any suspected bullying the better.


School Behaviour Model

We have introduced PB4L- Positive Behaviour for Learning

PB4L School-Wide looks at behaviour and learning from a whole-of-school as well as an individual child perspective. The framework is based on international evidence.

The Positive Behaviour for Learning School-Wide framework, otherwise known as PB4L School-Wide, is helping New Zealand schools build a culture where positive behaviour and learning is a way of life. The framework is tailored to our school’s own environment and cultural needs.

It is not about changing the students; it is about changing the environment, systems and practices we have in place to support them to make positive behaviour choices.

PB4L School-Wide is based on the Positive Behavioural Interventions and Supports (PBIS) framework developed at the University of Oregon in the 1990s. PBIS is now in thousands of schools across the United States and there are over 700 School-Wide schools in New Zealand.


Lost Property

The lost property bin is located on the deck by the Parent and Whanau Centre. Please encourage your children to look there as often they have left their clothing on the playground or field and gone back to class.


We will be running a second hand uniform sale on Wednesday 3pm-4pm for donated and unclaimed uniforms (from 2021) – Jackets/Polar Fleece Jumpers $10, everything else $5.   This will be held outside uniform shop or in whanau centre, if weather requires.                        

Student Safety

Thank you to everyone who is respecting the clearway areas. This makes it safer for traffic flow, just a small reminder that parking half on the curb and the road is not legal and you will get ticket by the council parking wardens. If you see someone please politely, point out the signs as sometimes-new parents or parents from the Day Care maybe unaware there are restrictions.


Emergency Contact

Please make sure you let the office know if there are any changes to phone numbers, emergency contacts or a new addresses. Several times this year we have had difficulty contacting parents because of changed information. Thank you in advance. 


Staff News

Congratulations to Mrs Claire Stretch who gave birth to a beautiful baby boy whom they have named Alfie. 

A new baby is like the beginning of all things – wonder, hope, a dream of possibilities. – By Eda J. Le Shan

Over the holidays, we said farewell to Mrs Bronwyn Horne. We thank Bronwyn for her eight years of service in and for the Pakuranga Heights School community and wish her all the best in this new chapter in her life.               


School Projects 

Hall, Hall Kitchen and Toilets

The hall, hall kitchen and toilets are nearly ready. The council is due to sign off this major renovation so once this happens the Pukeko Programmes and classes can use this upgraded facility. You are welcome to pop in and have a look.

Room 18 and Room 19 Upgrade

The upgrade is taking much longer than expected for a number of reasons including new regulations and requirements for new building standards.

Visitors Toilet and Sickbay Area Upgrade

The renovation is now complete with a functional sickbay and a modern toilet facility.

Volleyball Area

This has now been installed by the senior playground. Thank you to Mr Ward and Mr Mears for their hard work.


School Zone                                                                                                                              

The Ministry of Education has informed us that the placement of a school zone will continue for not only for us but Elm Park School, Riverhills School, Anchorage Park and Riverena School. The Ministry will consult with the community during the next two terms and once finalised will be in place for the 2023 school year.            


Mobile Phones

We do not recommend that students bring mobile phones to school. Mobile phones are not necessary to have during the day. However, we understand that some parents need their children to have a phone to communicate with them after school.

If a student does bring a phone to school, the following guidelines apply:

The phone must be turned off and handed into the office between 9:00 am and 3.00 pm.

The school does not accept responsibility for lost, damaged, or stolen phones.

If a staff member observes a student with a mobile phone during school time, the student must hand it to the staff member immediately when asked. The phone will be kept in the office and can be collected by the student at the end of the day.

If a parent needs to contact their child urgently during the day, they should call the office.


Please be aware that the school has been supplied with a range of sanitary products, so these are available to our students at any time from the office.  Young people should not miss out of their education because of something that is a normal part of life for half the population.


Thank you 

Thank you for entrusting your children in our care. Visitors and parents often comment on the positive, caring and happy atmosphere that exists at Pakuranga Heights. 

Ongoing research shows that family engagement in schools improves student achievement, reduces absenteeism, and restores parents’ confidence in their children’s education. Students with involved parents or other caregivers achieve at a higher level, have better social skills, and show improved behaviour.


Fintan Kelly


Need to Know

We will be conducting a lockdown exercise on Friday 20th May under the guidance and support of Harrison Tew.  Harrison Tew are an independent company who specialise in emergency management planning for schools and whose procedures have been successfully implemented in hundreds of schools throughout New Zealand.

During the exercise you will received a notification from the school, so it is important that your emergency contact details are up to date and correct.  The notification will emphasise that this is an exercise/practice and will explain that all updated information will be posted on the school website.

In a genuine incident, should you become aware of a lockdown or evacuation at the school, can we please ask that you do not attend the school or phone, as we will not be able to respond. Your presence or contact may make it more difficult for us or the emergency services to manage a situation.

We thank you for your support.


Upcoming events

In Room 2, we are focusing on Health – we had great fun practicing teeth brushing and learning about the importance of oral hygiene.

Room one remembered the ANZAC’s by each drawing a single poppy.

Together, we now have a field of poppies to honour all the people who have gone to war to make New Zealand a peaceful place to live.

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