Kiaora Koutou

Greetings to our wonderful school community.  A very special welcome to Emelia Allen, Lucia Allen, Bethany Stowers and Abby Moore, who have joined us since our last newsletter.  

Last week I had the opportunity to visit Korea and meet with families of students interested in studying at our school.  It was great to both promote our school within another country and also to connect with the culture from which our many Korean families and students come from.  I was impressed with the level of hospitality afforded by the Korean people and look forward to welcoming some of those I met with to St Mary’s either next, or in following years.

Next term sees our Aroha team start with a camp which I know all are looking forward to.  We are also hosting the Tauranga Moana Ra Whakangahau Festival which will be the highlight community event for the term.  In week 6 we welcome the Education Review Office to our school and we will of course look forward to summer sporting codes getting underway.  A busy and exciting term is on the way.

PTA Quiz Night
Congratulations to our amazing PTA for the hosting of yet another successful fund raising event.  I am reliably informed that once again it was the St Mary’s Staff who topped the ‘assisted competitive’ section of the night (lucky for them) but of course the benefits of the night are in the funds raised for students.  Once again the night brought in excess of $10,000 which will make a substantial contribution to the funding of our strategic direction.  My thanks therefore on behalf of our students and wider school community.

No Fireworks Gala in 2016
As previously communicated we are not holding our Fireworks Gala this year.  The reasons, as explained at an earlier date, relate to a variety of factors including work required around meeting new health and safety requirements.  It is my understanding that our PTA hope to do more work in regard to this and stage our Fireworks Gala once again in 2017.

2017 Enrolments
As this term draws to a close and next year beckons, it is important that we as a school are aware of any intentions to leave the area and / or our school.  Presently we have approximately 20 students on our waiting list for next year and it is important that we communicate with their families accurately in regard to a potential place.  

Likewise, as in 2016 it is likely that we will be over subscribed in regard to New Entrant numbers in the coming year.  Therefore if you have children turning 5 next year or know of families whose intention it is to attend St Mary’s at any time during 2017 please ensure enrolment procedures are started as soon as possible.

Tauranga Moana Ra Whakangahau Kapa Haka Festival 2016

As previously announced, this year Hato Maria (St Mary’s) will be hosting the 2016 Tauranga Moana Kapa Haka Festival on the 24th and 25th of November.  As the first Catholic School to host this event we will be looking to work with our other Catholic Schools and wider Whanau to impart Kaupau o Katorika (aspects Catholic) throughout the festival.

Thank you to those who have expressed an interest in being a part of this amazing festival.  I will be in touch shortly with more details in regard to possible tasks you can involve yourself in. If being part of Ra Whakangahau excites you please email your name and contact details (phone and email address) to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will be in further contact regarding specific roles and responsibilities that may interest you.

75th Jubilee
2017 marks the 75th Anniversary of the commencement of St Mary’s Catholic School in Tauranga. St Mary’s Catholic School began in September 1942 managed and staffed entirely by the Sisters of St Joseph of Cluny, many of whom came to New Zealand from Ireland.  To celebrate this significant event in the life of the school a Jubilee weekend is planned to take place on September 22, 23 and 24 September 2017.

For more information please see our school website, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or follow us on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/stmarystga.school.nz

To make the jubilee a success we would be grateful if you would pass on the above information to past pupils, parents, staff and friends of the school.

Ben Fuller
Principal