From the Principal’s Desk
Nga mihi nui kia koutou katoa. Welcome to the Westland High School September newsletter, end of another term!
E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā karangatanga maha, tēnā koutou katoa. Warm greetings to you all.
The end of the term is almost upon us. There a range of mixed emotions from students as we head into ball season, soon to be followed by NCEA examinations. Many changes are taking place this term and next, not withstanding, the Actual start of the Hall and Administration rebuild this is fantastic news and certainly long overdue. There is further information further down about access to school and restrictions that are going to be in place due to the hall / administration rebuild.
The excitement continues to build as the Westland High School ball nears. The Ball is being held at the Hokitika Primary School hall with the 'walk in' commencing at 7 pm. Parents, whanau and community are welcome to come along and view the students as they arrive at the venue and undertake their walk in. Vehicles bringing students to the ball will be able to set down the attendees outside the main gate of Hokitika Primary school. Remind students that they need to be at the ball on time and doors close at 7:45pm, after this time no further people will be admitted to the venue.
We would like to thank Hokitika Primary school in advance for allowing our students to hold the annual ball in their school hall. Thank you very much HPS it's much appreciated.
Year 8 and Year 9
Middle school students option choices are in the process of selection for 2021. The information has been shared with students and families. This is the first time we have trialed option selection through the Kamar student portal, for the middle school. Seniors have done so in the past successfully, but with the new version of Kamar there have been a few areas that have been confusing. These will be ironed out for next years selections. if you and your young people are finding it challenging please contact the school office.
NCEA Examinations and Study Leave
Senior students have completed their derived grade examinations earlier this term, and now their attention needs to re-focus on the remaining 6 weeks as they build up to NCEA. Seniors last day of school before they go on study leave is Friday 13th November. The first of the NCEA examinations commence Monday 16th November.
This can be an anxious time for students as they build-up to their examinations, Parents/Whanau, please continue to support and encourage your young adults to remain focused as they start to move into exam mode, your support and encouragement will assist tremendously as they prepare for their exams. The staff are only more then happy to work with students if they need extra assistance.
By now Seniors all need to have a study plan in place, if they haven't already, to start working on over the holidays. All Seniors will need to work hard over these holidays to revise and continue to finish off any assessments still required. Please seek assistance from your teachers before you head into the holiday break if you are unsure what you need to be focusing on.
Attendance + Attitude = Success
The relationship between attendance and attitude is strong, research shows that when students are attending school they are learning, so high attendance is paramount, when attendance is coupled with a positive learning attitude then a real difference in the student’s progress and learning takes shape. Our school attendance rates are above the national average and all statistics shown so far is that it is having a positive impact on our overall student achievement results as well. There is always room for improvement though, so keep striving for the best.
I would like to remind all students that cell phones during class time are not condoned. Phones during class are a distraction to all students, from their learning. If parents need to contact their young people urgently, they can do so through the school office.
Hall and Admin rebuild
Many of you may have already seen the Chris Yates Builders project cabins located in the school gravel car park, well this is not a mistaken storage location for these portacoms… The actual rebuild starts on the 21st September this year with the car parking area being the first items to be fenced off.
Once the area is fenced off vehicle access to the school will not be available. Parking areas will be on Park Street and across the road from the school on Britten Street. The school will have pedestrian access only, access to the school will be this way for approximately 14 months while the Hall/Admin rebuild is taking place.
the library will remain as the school office in the interim and access to the office will be by pedestrian access only, if anything changes we will let you know as soon as possible.
Miss Rebecca Davis recently has stepped down as Head Girl of Westland High School, I wish to thank Rebecca for the time and efforts she has put into the School during 2020. Deputy Head Girl Maddison Fraser-Golding will now fill the position of Head Girl for the remainder of the year.
2020 has been a tumultuous year with many wide-ranging challenges occurring across and within our school and community for our students. Our students can be applauded for the manner in which, under difficult circumstances, they have kept going. The same can be said for the professionalism and courage of our staff who continue to support our tamariki. This is also a timely reminder that students have access to the school counsellor Fiona Lauder, Fiona can be contacted at any time by students and should be encouraged to do so if they need to talk confidentially about anything that is concerning them.
Sam Hewitt recently competed in the NZ Junior World Freeride tour and placed 2nd in the U14's category. Sam is very talented on the ski field's and we are very proud of his achievements to date. We like to be able to celebrate our students who are achieving outside of school, so please inform us if you know of any past or present students who are doing great things in the community.
A big well-done to all our sporting teams who have been participating in a range of sports over the last few months, many of these team sports have been affected by COVID restrictions and as a result training has been challenging.
A big thank you to all our coaches, parents, students and staff who have supported our students across a range of different sports enabling them to take place, with a pending move back to level one on Monday the 21st of September midnight, all sporting activities should return to normal.
Ngā mihi nui