From the Principal

We are mid-way through the final term and gearing up for the final calendar month of school in 2023! Our teachers are busy preparing reports, and end of year assemblies, as well as looking ahead to their new students for 2024!

Teacher-Only Day

A reminder that Tuesday 14th November is a teacher-only day. This is one of a series of Ministry mandated teacher-only days provided for schools to prepare for the introduction of the new Aotearoa NZ Curriculum. We have managed to secure the support of an outside consultant to work with our team on this day, meaning we were unable to use a Friday or Monday to extend the weekend.

Biennial Community Health / Draft Health Curriculum Consultation

As required by the Ministry of Education, we are required to consult our community about our Health Curriculum. Parents should have received an email with a link to a 10-15 minute survey covering aspects of our Health Curriculum and providing you with the opportunity to add your voice or ideas to help us finalise our Draft Curriculum Document. If you have not received this email, please check your Spam folder, and contact our office to make sure we hold your current email address. 

Digital Disruption at PMPS Next Week

From Monday 13th November, we are undergoing a significant wifi upgrade to all areas in school. This work is expected to take a week to complete, and will cause significant periods of disruption each day. Please be patient if trying to contact school – it may take slightly longer than normal to respond to emails. 

Biennial 2023 Community Survey – Trends from open response questions

Following on from the data responses coming from our 2023 Community Survey in the last newsletter, we are now able to publish the collated responses from questions 8 (What are the strengths of our school?) and 9 (What changes and improvements would you like to see?)

Based on the provided open-ended responses of Question 8, the top 5 aspects that respondents mentioned as positive attributes of the school, along with the number of references for each trend, are as follows:

Community and Values (References: 50): Respondents frequently mentioned the sense of community, good values, and strong school culture as key aspects. This includes the importance of a welcoming and supportive school community that fosters a positive environment for students.

Academic Excellence (References: 44): Academic excellence and a focus on learning were significant themes. This includes mentions of great teachers, supportive learning environments, and the school’s commitment to academic success.

Leadership and Communication (References: 41): Several respondents highlighted the role of school leadership in terms of management, communication, and the use of various communication channels. They emphasized the importance of well-organized and effective leadership.

Student Well-Being and Inclusivity (References: 36): Aspects related to student well-being, inclusivity, and respect were also noted. This includes references to an open-minded culture, diversity, and the school’s commitment to students’ well-being.

– Parent-School Relationships (References: 34): Respondents highlighted the strength of the school’s relationships with parents and the importance of engaging and involving families in the school community.

These trends represent the most frequently mentioned aspects from the provided responses, indicating that they are highly valued by the respondents when evaluating the school’s qualities and characteristics.

Based on the provided open-ended responses of Question 9, the top 5 themes that respondents mentioned as aspects of the school which could be improved, along with the number of references for each trend, are as follows:

The results are as follows,

Communication and Transparency (References: 20): The theme of communication was mentioned multiple times. Respondents wanted more clear communication regarding school events and activities, such as inviting parents to certain events. They also suggested transparent learning agendas at the beginning of each term to help parents understand what their children will be learning.

– Academic Focus and Learning Support (References: 19): Several parents express a desire for more emphasis on academic performance and providing additional support for students, including more feedback on their progress.

– Infrastructure and Facilities (References: 11): Several respondents point out the need for improvements in school facilities, including modernization, maintenance, and creating a better learning environment.

– After – School Activities (References: 10): A common theme was the desire for more sports and after-school activities, particularly for Junior students (years 1-3). Some respondents emphasized the importance of providing more opportunities for students to engage in extracurricular activities and develop a strong work ethic through homework.

– Individualized Development (References: 5): Several respondents emphasized the importance of identifying children’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT analysis) individually. They suggested setting goals for individual development to support each student’s unique needs.

Mental Health Education in Team Pohutukawa

At Pohutukawa Team, we’ve had the privilege of using the book ‘Aroha’s Way’ by Craig Phillips as our guide, helping us unpack the wide array of feelings we experience and the actions we can take to change the way we feel.

Our students had the opportunity to explore the feeling of joy in a way that was both fun and educational. We encouraged them to express this beautiful emotion through a variety of creative outlets. They experimented with movement to discover what joy might look like, which led to an abundance of laughter as they shared their most joyful movements with their classmates. We also delved into the sounds of joy, listening to what joy sounds like, and encouraged our young minds to translate those sounds into drawings, effectively expressing what joy looks like to them. It’s heartwarming to witness the rich language of emotions that our students can so naturally draw upon, fostering empathy and self-awareness.

Learning with Whānau: Work with your child to create a soundscape of joy at home. Listen together to ‘What does joy sound like?’ and engage in a meaningful discussion about the different sounds that evoke joy in your family.

Dates for your Diary

Tuesday 14 November – Teacher Only Day

Prize-Giving Assemblies

Thu 7 December 

Puriri 9.15am to 10.15am

Manuka 11.15am to 12.15pm

Pohutukawa 1.30pm to 2.30pm

Fri 8th December

Kauri 9.15am to 10.45am

Titoki 11.15am to 12.45pm

Kahikatea 1.15pm to 2.45pm

Mon 11th December

Year 6 Awards and Graduation – 6pm (TBC)

Friday 15 December – School finishes for the year

Tuesday 30 January 2024 – Term 1 commences



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