From the Acting Principal’s Desk
Nga mihi nui kia koutou katoa. Welcome to the Westland High School newsletter for June 2023.
Tēnā koutou katoa
This is the final message from the desk of the term two Acting Principal. In just over three weeks we will welcome the next Principal for Westland High School - Mr Nic Richards.
It has been a busy term. Everyone from students, to teachers, support staff and parents/caregivers have felt the pressures of a term which has been heavily impacted on by the PPTA industrial action. It was heartening today, to have all students back on site preparing for one more week of focused learning before the 2 week July holidays.
Resiliency is a key attribute for any young person and while the rostering home was not ideal for continuity of learning, it was an opportunity for all rangatahi to ‘step up’ and take charge of their learning journeys. The New Zealand Curriculum has seven key competencies including self-managing. If there was ever a time when students needed to enact this, it was during the period of rostering home.
The word homework has a tendancy to cause a range of reactions most frequently, “nah the teacher didn’t give us any”. On many occasions this is likely to be true. However, a resilient, selfmanaging learner with clear academic goals will always find ‘work’ to do ‘at ‘home’. This might include:
- reviewing work covered in class
- reading a book
- checking out the subject learning site
- doing online research related to current inclass topics
- checking out studyit (https://studyit.govt.nz/)
- writing a personal blog
- getting a study buddy…………………..
It is key for students to take responsibility for their learning; the teacher is there to guide and facilitate but a successful teaching and learning relationship needs to be reciprocal. On that note, our senior students in particular should be using the July holidays to complete unfinished work and to start studying for the derived grade examinations which are calendared for week 6, 21 -25th August.
At the beginning of next term we will hold another values assembly where a number of students will be awarded values badges. These badges are awarded to students who demonstrate the school values - Manaakitanga, Whanaungatanga, Rangatiratanga, Kaitiakitanga. Recipients are often surprised to receive the award, they don’t realise that we (all staff) do actually take note of the great things they do.
This week Year 8 students coming into Year 9 in 2024 were invited to the school to get a taster of learning in a high school setting. It was a successful morning. The incoming students were excited to be at high school, the Westland High School buddies showed manaaki and the teachers provided memorable learning experiences for all of the students. It was a proud occasion for Westland High School.
A reminder also that we do have an ‘open door’ policy at Westland High School, and if parents/caregivers have concerns please feel welcome to contact the office to arrange to talk with one of our staff.
On Monday 17th July (term 3) we will have a powhiri to welcome Mr Nic Richards and his whānau to Westland High School. But for now it is my time to sign off and to extend a heartfelt thank you to everyone I have worked with during this term in the capacity of acting Principal. Ten weeks seems like a short period of time, but in a secondary school setting a lot can happen.
Ngā mihi nui
Acting Principal Term 2