Although our focus this year is on Compassion, the focus this week has certainly been on Community! During this week St Peter’s has been very engaged with the wider community.
We have a very good representation on the Gore Youth Council again this year and it was a privilege to be part of their swearing-in ceremony on Monday evening. It is pleasing to see some younger members of the school already prepared to contribute to the community they live in. Congratulations to Alex Parish (a third term councillor) who was voted in as Deputy Chair.
On Tuesday, a group of our year 7 & 8 students took part in the Cultural Festival held at Mataura School. Mrs Susan Winters has done some excellent working helping to prepare the students for this and it was exciting to be able to join with St Mary’s to make this happen. Well done to Maegan and Nicola Mitchell (year 7) who joined big sister Jenny, in an individual performance on the day.
Another big day for our community is on Monday (weather permitting!) when we hold our Athletics Sports. We are trying to strengthen our House spirit and will be encouraging year 7 – 10 students to see a year 13 student on Monday morning to get ‘face painted’ in their house colour. Please see the email that was sent home yesterday regarding house colours for sports day. We would love to see parents and members of our wider community attend this day. Everyone is most welcome.
We are fortunate to have many opportunities for students to take part in Southland school sports events. We have students currently entering waterskiing champs, triathlons, mountain bike competitions, touch and volleyball to name a few as well as the cricket season being well underway and netball and rugby trials beginning – it is a busy time for sporty students and the staff and parents involved in the preparation! We need and truly appreciate the help of the parent community, however we also understand the work commitments many have. It costs the school about $300 every time we release a staff member to accompany a team to an event as well as potential learning disruption for the classes they would usually be teaching back at school. Although teachers are keen to be involved in these activities we do need parents to help as managers, coordinators and drivers throughout the year or continued student participation in these events may be at risk. Please consider whether you can contribute in some way. Please bear in mind that due to legal requirements we need to police vet anyone who will be in contact with our students. If you would like to help with school camps, coaching, managing or any other events in school please pick up a vetting form from the office or email us to have one sent to you.
2015 NCEA Highlights:
Every Year 12 student who was enrolled at school through to the end of the year gained level 2 – 100%!! Many of our leavers had already gained Level 2 when they left to apprenticeships and further training during the year.
71% of students at Level 1 gained a merit or excellence endorsement which is well above national school wide data (54%) and national decile 8-10 school data (69%). This is our best result in 5 years.
At Level 1, 32.7% of our year 11 students gained an excellence endorsement compared with a decile 8-10 schools average of 27.3% – our best result in 5 years
Level 3 excellence endorsements were at 22% compared with 17% for decile 8 – 10 schools nationally and again our best in 5 years
Congratulations and thank you to all those students and staff who worked hard to produce these impressive statistics.
Another very important piece of data we look at as a school is our destination data. Of last year’s leavers all have employment, further training, apprenticeships or polytech/university underway for this year. Although NCEA qualifications data of a school is important, I believe the true success of a school is measured by the number of students who leave school with a meaningful pathway tailored to their individual talents and aspirations and at the same time are prepared to contribute positively to their community. Thank you to all our hard working staff who prepared our 2015 leavers for this next stage of their lives.
We pray for ourselves and our leavers as many of them embark on new environments this month.
O Lord, you mark the journey of life with change. Change is your instrument of growth that brings us to a deeper relationship with you. May your Word be the lantern that guides the roads of change in our lives. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen