Kiaora Koutou

Greetings to our amazing St Mary’s community.  It is great to see that we are well into spring with summer not too far away.  This of course signals a change in sporting codes and it is great to see so many children taking advantage of the amazing opportunities St Mary’s has to offer.  Please join me in thanking our new Sports Coordinator Steve Finlayson for the remarkable job he is doing.
New season also signals a change of uniform.  From the beginning of next week all children need to be in the summer variation of our uniform.  The main change being foot wear (black roman sandals).  It is of course, essential that all children have a sun hat from Tuesday. 

Sun Safety
Sun block will be available in classes but I would suggest applying sunblock to your child in the morning before school as an additional precaution.  As I am sure you do as parents we encourage children to manage themselves when it comes to sunscreen.  Our teachers will always give reminders but are unable to apply sun block to their entire class.
We will be reviewing our sun smart policy this term.  Look out for details so that you can contribute.

Year 5 and 6 Camp
I thouroughly enjoyed my opportunity to visit our Year 5 and 6 campers in week one of this term.  Totora Springs is an amazing facility filled with many challenges and opportunities for kids to make the most of.  Thank you to Aroha teachers for their organisation and leadership of such a successful EOTC activity and to the many parents who gave up time from work and family to support the team.

Traffic Safety
You may have noticed an increased presence from both Tauranga City Council and our local Police before and after school.  I have been working with both Angela Joyce of TCC and Emma Buxton of the New Zealand Police to refine traffic management proceedures around our school.  However, the onus sits with parents to ensure they are taking the utmost care when driving around our school.  It has been extremely disturbing to see parents dropping children on the oppostie side of 13th Avenue and expecting them to cross the street unsupervised.  This is an extremely dangerous practise and one that should be avoided at all times.
Please ensure you have plenty of time to park your vehicle appropriately and accompany your child to our school gate.

St Mary’s Pasifika Group
On behalf of our school community I would like to wish the students and parents of our Pasifika group all the best for their upcoming performance at the Bay of Plenty Schools Pasifika Festival being held at Te Aku Ki Papamoa next Wednesday.  Congratulations to all involved for the work you have done leading up to this festival.

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.

Tauranga Moana Ra Whakangahau Kapa Haka Festival 2016
Thank you to those who have expressed an interest in being a part of this amazing festival.  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.

2017 Enrolments
A reminder to all who 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 enrollment procedures are started as soon as possible.
End of Year change of date
Our last day of school will now be Thursday 15 December, with our End of Year School Prizegiving being held on Wednesday 14 December.

New Families to St Mary’s
In closing I would like to personally welcome the following students to St Mary’s since my last newsletter;
Alexis Cardey, Leah Cunningham, Evie Dumbleton, Coco Jacobs, Aaniya Jithu, Connor Kenny, Rex Lu, Elliot Olsen, Johann Shijo, Bethany Stowers, Palmy Townsend, Lola Verran, Zara Willers.
I look forward to welcoming you officially at our New Families liturgy next week.
Nga Mihi Nui Kia Koutou

Ben Fuller