From the Principal’s Desk
Nga mihi nui kia koutou katoa. Welcome to the Westland High School newsletter for March 2021.
Tēnā koutou katoa,
Term one is well underway and students have settled into their learning programmes. This year we have again seen an increase in student numbers which is a good sign for the school. The buzz around the school is positive.
A reminder about attendance, students with attendance below 93%, will not be permitted travel and or to represent the school, attend the school ball or other non-curriculum-based activities like most sports events. There are a few exceptions to this, such as absences beyond the student’s control like illness etc.
Absences such as holidays during term time, sleeping in, etc. are not acceptable and reduces the student attendance percentage. Westland High School is required to ensure the Ministry of Education's attendance rules are adhered to at all times, and we do so.
Regular attendance is essential; otherwise, gaps in understanding grow, and eventually, this means learning will suffer. We care about every student and their education and expect everyone to be the best they can be and at school all the time.
To check your child’s school attendance follow the link below and enter the username and password previously provided. Contact the school office if you have misplaced the username and password.
The majority of students understand the need for regular and consistent attendance. We will continue to work with students who struggle with attendance including family’s where assistance is required. If you are a family that has a concern with your child's attendance please do contact the Whanau teacher for an initial conversation, when we work together there are better outcomes for our young people.
NCEA for our senior students is also a point of interest with changes to resubmission of work, essentially students can no longer resubmit work once handed in to request a merit or excellent grade, but can resubmit for a not achieved to an achieved grade, In essence this means students need to and should ensure any work submitted for assessment is of the highest standard in the first instance
On occasion parents and Whanau may need to contact the school. The classroom teacher or Whanau teacher should be contacted in the first instance if you have a concern or need to discuss learning related information. Contact can be made through the school office by phone or email. firstname.lastname@example.org
We are currently still in Alert level two, however we remind people that some actions need to remain at Level one such as Hand washing to prevent the spread. Keep it simple and wash your hands well.
- Washing hands with soap and water before and after eating as well as after attending the toilet
- Covering coughs and sneezes with clean tissues or with an elbow
- Putting used tissues in the bin
- Encouraging staff and students to stay home if they are unwell
You will be aware that advice from the Ministry of Health asks everyone to wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, making sure you dry them thoroughly. Singing Tutira mai or Happy Birthday twice, slowly should take about 20 seconds. To assist with this messaging, there are a couple of useful videos from the National Health Service (UK) that might help teach good hand washing techniques:
Teaches hand washing technique (UK NHS):
Hand washing happy birthday (UK NHS): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGJNspLRdrc
The Hall and Administration block are well underway with the first of the steel frames in place, over the next few months we will see a structure grow in size, this is an exciting time for the school, students, staff and whanau to see strong progress on the rebuild. As part of the wider construction phase the staff room is almost complete, the students support hub in A Wing located next to the library should be completed mid year or before. Work on the Wharenui is yet to be started. The hall and Administration along with the Wharenui are scheduled for completion and to be opened at the commencement of the 2022 school year.
Westland High School is a digital learning school and computers are an essential tool in this environment. It is expected that all students have their own device; preferably a school purchased chromebook which can be paid off up to three years.
We are now midway through term one and all classes are well into the first assessments for the year. Teachers have designed their teaching and learning programs to include digital devices (computers / laptops). It is therefore essential that all students bring a fully charged device to school every day. If the device requires charging during the school day, then students also need to bring their named charger to school. Covid and lockdown last year has shown us how important digital learning and access to educational material can be.
If you would like to purchase a chromebook through the school please contact: email@example.com or pop in and chat with the administration staff.
These devices come Westland High School ready, have an excellent insurance/warranty package and can be serviced by our on site IT technicians.
Stay safe, our thoughts are with those communities that have been evacuated over the night due to the Tsunami threat from the recent earthquake activity. Keep up to date with the Civil Defence website and communication to ensure you have the most correct information regarding our area.
Ngā mihi nui