Teaching and Learning Update
Kia ora koutou,
As of Thursday this week, we are literally in the second half of Term Three, as we begin Week 6 next Monday. Time, as they say, waits for no one… Just a few points from me as we race towards the end of term.
I am very pleased that the Year 7 and 8 Whanau Conferences were able to be held this week as we were able to meet all the Level 2 requirements. Thank you to the parents who came in to meet with their child and their homeroom teacher. The home-school partnership is very important to the success of our young people, and it was wonderful to see that so many parents had taken up the opportunity of this Conference. I would also like to acknowledge and thank our fantastic Year 7 and 8 teachers who prepared for each of these meetings and have had two very long days conducting them.
We are still investigating our options and hope to be in touch soon regarding how and when we will reschedule the Year 7 – 13 Whanau conferences with specialist teachers.
Another casualty of the Level 2 restrictions was our PBL Process Exhibition. This was meant to be an opportunity for our students to invite experts from the community in to see what they have been learning about, and seek feedback on their work so far. Unfortunately, this was unable to happen but, we were able to organise a more low-key exhibition during which students and staff were able to offer their critiques to exhibitors. The event went well and it was wonderful that our new Technology teacher Juliet Sorrel affirmed the students’ learning. Ms Sorrel has been involved in leading PBL at her previous school so knows exactly what to look for! We hope that the big night at the Town and Country on Thursday, 26 November will still go ahead, but, like everyone else, we will just have to make another plan if we need to, closer to the time!
You will be aware of the changes that NZQA has made to NCEA in response to the current pandemic. I met with all of the students on Wednesday and emphasised that there should be no reason for any student to be stressed regarding their ability to achieve NCEA if they are doing everything that their teacher is asking of them. Every interaction, every task, no matter how big or small, needs to be completed and completed as well as possible. We have structures in place should we end up unable to have face to face time with our students, but it is important that every minute in every class be used well. There are only 24 school days before the Derived Grade Examinations (practice exams) take place and 12 school days after those before the seniors leave school on exam leave. 36 days. It is not a very long time. Please encourage your children to be making the very best possible use of the face-to-face time they have at school at the moment, and check in with them that they are keeping up to date with all work and assessments that might be due.
As always, please feel free to be in touch with me by email.
Bridget Ryan, Deputy Principal