Using Schoolhopper in Term 2

If you’re planning on using Schoolhopper to get to school in Term 2 there is an important change to note – you will need to pay a fare.

With a Smartride Card: $1.15
Cash: $1.60

Smartride cards
Using a Smartride Card is the fastest and cheapest way to travel.

All Schoolhopper students will be provided with a Smartride card through the school, which is pre-loaded with $10 credit. Please make sure this card is registered at as soon as possible, so that if the card is lost you can call 0800 884 880 and any remaining credit on the card can be transferred to a new card. 

Smartride cards with the pre-loaded $10 credit will be sent home with students next week.

Topping up
You can top up your card on the bus (either the Schoolhopper buses from term two or any Bayhopper bus anytime) or at the Tauranga iSite in Willow Street. You can also purchase new cards (the card is free when topping up with a minimum top-up of $10) from the same places.

While we would love to be able to offer online top-ups, unfortunately the technology our regional bus network uses does not allow this just yet, but we are planning a major upgrade in the next couple of years when it will.

For more information about using Schoolhopper, please visit

Fundraiser for Caritas Vanuatu Mufti Day

We will be having a Mufti Day this Wednesday 25 March to raise money for Caritas who will be using all funds collected for relief work in Vanuatu following the recent devastating cyclone.  We ask that students wearing mufti give a gold coin donation. A receipt may be obtained from the office for donations over $5.00.

Cyclone Pam

Caritas Oceania agencies, including Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand, are helping to lead a joint response in Vanuatu with the Catholic Church. Shelter is a major priority and a number of churches are being used as evacuation centres. A large number of tarps to be used for shelter will also be arriving in Port Vila in the next few days for distribution to those most in need.
Caritas staff members are working with the Disaster Committee that has been established by the Diocese of Port Vila to help coordinate humanitarian relief efforts. Shelter in the form of tarps have been sent to Vanuatu by CRS and will arrive in the country soon.

Caritas Oceania agencies, including Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand and Caritas Australia are leading a combined Caritas response helping to provide shelter to the thousands that are homeless, as well as providing people in evacuation centres with food, water and other necessities.

We thank you for your generosity supporting this very worthwhile cause.

Holy Week

We are fast approaching the great feast of Easter. Only one more week until Holy Week – the most important week in the church’s year.

During Holy Week we will be following events of Jesus’ last week on earth. There will be a Liturgy each morning in the Blessed Anne Marie Javouhey Centre which you are warmly invited to so you can journey with us as we approach Easter.

The timetable for the week is as follows;

Monday 30 March 10.00am
Liturgy to recall Palm Sunday, led by Mrs Wood and Room 5.

Tuesday 31  March 9.00am 
Liturgy to recall Jesus’ time of prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, led by Mrs Robbie and Room 3. 

Wednesday 1 April 9.00am 
Liturgy to recall the Last Supper, led by Mr Hesqua. At this Liturgy we will have a re-enactment of  the washing of the feet and Sursum Corda will be singing.

Thursday 2 April   
Stations of the Cross led by Room 10. Miss Benson has been busy preparing the students for this. All the school will be involved in coming together to pray the Stations. If it is fine we plan to hold the Stations outside in the grounds of the school. The Stations will take place at 9.15am and 11am. 

Thursday 2 April 7.00pm 
Mass of the Last Supper St Mary Immaculate Church, Cameron Rd.
Our Sursum Corda Choir will be leading the singing for this. They have been practising hard and I’m sure will sing really beautifully for this very special Mass.

Wishing all members of our St Mary’s School community the blessings and joy of Easter!

Sally Washer

Parent Teacher Learning Conversations

We warmly invite you to make a time to meet your child’s teacher for a Parent Teacher Learning Conversation on Tuesday 24 March between 1pm and 7.30pm.

You can book your ten minute Learning Conversation with your child’s teacher online following this link:

Event code: VYQPH

We know that a great working relationship between parents and a child’s teacher, where the child is placed at the heart of the matter, has a significant impact on student learning outcomes. 

We value your role as equal stakeholders in your child’s learning development and have designed these Parent Teacher Learning Conversations, as an opportunity for you to tell us about your child the learner.

Your child’s teacher will also share with you indications of how your child is tracking from observations and latest diagnostic assessment information.

Students will be supervised at school on Tuesday 24 March until 2.55pm.  

You are welcome to take your child home early, if your Parent Teacher Learning Conversation finishes before 2.55pm.

Buses will run at the normal times and After School Care will be available.

We look forward to talking with you on Tuesday 24th.

Kind regards
The Senior Leadership Team and Teaching Staff

Parent Teacher Learning Conversations Tuesday 24 March

A reminder to parents that on the reporting horizon are our Teacher Parent Learning Conversations, to be held next week on Tuesday 24 March.  The purpose of these interviews is to provide parents with an understanding of initial and potential student achievement during the coming year.

If you are unable to attend for any reason please make contact with your child’s teacher as the time together will establish key understanding of how parent and teacher work best together for the benefit of the child.

Teacher Parent Learning Conversations:

• An opportunity to share current achievement information and observations

• A dialogue about potential areas of achievement

• 10 minutes long (max.)

• Between the parent and the teacher

Tuesday 24 March 1 pm – 7.30pm

Times can be booked online by following this link.

Event code: VYQPH

Students will be supervised until school finishes at 2.55pm, and buses will run at the normal times.  After School Care will still be available.

You are welcome to take your child home early if your Learning Conversation finishes before 2.55pm.

Ben Fuller

School Mass Thursday 19 March

You are all warmly invited to join us tomorrow for Mass in St Mary Immaculate Church Cameron Rd at 9.30am to celebrate the feast day of St Joseph.
It is a special feast day here for us at St Mary's School as St Joseph is the patron Saint of our Cluny Sisters.

With kind regards and God bless

Sally Washer

Parish / School Mass this Sunday 15 March 2015

A reminder to you all that we have our Parish/School Mass this Sunday 15 March at 10.30am in St Mary Immaculate Church Cameron Rd.

We encourage you to join us for this Mass to show your support of the special character of our school.  Students are asked to wear their school uniform and sit with their families.

Sursum Corda students are also to wear their school uniform and meet in the overflow room at the back of the church by 10.20am.

With thanks and God bless
Sally Washer

IAAF Nestle Kids’ Athletics

On Friday 27 February, 26 of St Mary’s Year 3 & 4 students were involved in the official launch in New Zealand of the “IAAF Nestle Kids’ Athletics” at Omanu Beach alongside students from Omanu and Matakana Island schools.

IAAF Kids athletics is one of the biggest grassroots development programmes in the world of sports. 

The IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations) ambassador and long jump world record holder, Mike Powell, was a main feature of Friday’s event - he continues to hold the world long jump record from 1991 with his jump of 8.95m. 

Students were placed into teams and rotated around eight running, jumping and throwing activities in the sand, including pole jumping and hurdles which many had never tried before.  One of the rotations included a healthy eating message with a banana and drink of water for all participants.  The event was about having fun and encouraging the general development of the run, jump and throw skills which is part of our Physical Education programme.

Some of the students’ comments are:

Nathan Holmberg  “I liked the ball throwing because we were challenged to go over the highest score.”

Madison Smith “I mainly liked everything.  I hadn’t done the hopping on different number pads and it was a little hard because you had to go back to zero after each hop before going to the next number.”

Lily Cooper  “The pole jumping was good - I’ve used Mum’s planting stakes to do that at home.  The standing long jump was good because it’s hard to run and then get the jump right.”

Milla Mason  “The pole jumping made you jump higher but the Racing Car Run was my favourite because there were lots of challenges on the way.”

Gabbie Way  “Throwing the ball backwards over my head really tested my throwing skills - the balls went all over the place.”

Joanne Meehan, Teacher in Charge