WHS Newsletter | Issue 2.01 | 06 May 2022
Kia ora and welcome to the Wakatipu High School newsletter at the start of the second term. Term 2 is always action-packed, and both this week and the newsletter below are testament to that and the fact that we are well and truly underway.
I will begin with Covid. As expected, student and staff absence due to Covid is still an issue. If you recall from last term, staffing becomes a problem when staff absence exceeds our relief capacity, and we have had a couple of days that have been tight this week. Accordingly, as per my email last weekend, while we really hope we don't have to, rostering home remains a possibility - fingers crossed. In terms of student absence, we have had approximately 180 to 200 students (but not all Covid) absent per day this week. Students who are not at school but able to work should be on their Google Classrooms and emailing teachers and classmates to ensure they do their best to continue with their schoolwork. Mask-wearing has been mixed, and we continue to encourage students to wear masks inside at school.
Phase 2 is a good news story this week with the opening of the new NE wing - which is looking great (see photos below). More challenging has the movement of English and Performing Arts to the temporary classrooms while the south side of the building is modified this term. Staff and students are being really good about the changes, but it is another Phase 2 disruption - just one term to go. Covid permitting, we will look to run some parent tours next term when everything is open and we settle to our new normal.
With the move to Orange, this week we have had two important assemblies. The first was for our Year 9s. Under normal circumstances this would not be at all notable but with Covid it is the first time our Year 9s have gathered formally as a group at WHS. A key purpose of the assembly was to show the Year 9s how formal assemblies work before our Excellence and Ad Alta assemblies in Week 3. We were clear with our expectations and it went well.
This afternoon we had our Summer Sports assembly. Despite the disruptions and negative impacts of Covid it has been a very good summer of sport for our students, and it was great to gather and celebrate their achievements in a wide range of sports - including national champions in rowing and adventure racing. It was also great to have parents in attendance, and to have senior students play an important part in the running of the ceremony.
As I noted, there has been a lot going on this week - including the first of our university trips, to Canterbury and Lincoln, and the House netball competition getting underway, as well as the launch of the Year 11 health and wellbeing programme this morning. Next week has several events to note:
- Senior Next Steps - next Tuesday 10th. NB school finishes and buses run from at 1.50pm for all students.
- Covid Care and Connect evening - next Wednesday 11th, see below for more.
- Accord NCEA (Teacher Only) Day - next Friday 13th.
The following week has House Excellence/Ad Alta/Akonga Passport assemblies - more information on these to come.
As above, it is a sizable newsletter. As well as important pieces on attendance and uniform, the sports and arts sections are full of events and the efforts and achievements of our students, and if you missed it previously a piece from Branches Trust - including supporting Branches Camp to the tune of $55k, amazing!
Term 2 is always a busy one with a focus on teaching and learning, as well as winter sport and a number of trips and events, including the Formal and Matatū to finish the term. As well as these exciting events, particularly with the Covid disruption of term one, students need to be very focused on their learning and achievement this term.
A mixed autumn weekend of weather ahead, with tomorrow definitely the best day for outdoor activities.
Phase 2 - NE Wing
The new North East wing of the school was opened to us this Term. The new wing includes
- new Science labs and more Science classroom space
- a lecture theatre - Mātuitui
- new learning common - Brow
- an open flexible learning space - Waipuna
- an outdoor gym in the external area to the north.
Its exciting to see progress on Phase 2 coming to completion with one more term until the SE wing opens.
Senior Next Steps
Senior Next Steps - parent/teacher/student meetings will be held on 10 May from 2:30pm. Booking may be made through the School Interviews website here.
NB: school will finish for all students at 1:50pm on this day and buses will be running at this time.
Attendance and Truancy
Many of you would have noticed the concerns about school truancy in the media lately. You would have also heard about the Government making allowances for this in their budget through a funding package and strategy which will be welcomed by all schools, including us. Attendance and truancy in particular are complex issues which require ongoing focus and support across the board from schools, whānau, and our wider school hapori (community) including the likes of external agencies. As many have mentioned in the media, there is no magic wand.
I'm pleased to report that our latest attendance report from the Ministry of Education was very good and shows that our attendance systems and procedures are working well. We appreciate the ongoing support from whānau and we know that every day has a cumulative impact on a child’s learning and there is no ‘safe’ level of non-attendance. Every day matters.
Ngā mihi nui ki a koutou,
Acting Deputy Principal l Kaihāpai Māori
This week we carried out a school-wide audit of the uniform during Ako Time. Wearing our uniform correctly is an expectation of students attending WHS and a way in which students can demonstrate their pride for themselves and for our school. The vast majority of students are wearing the uniform as expected and we thank parents and caregivers for their ongoing support of our uniform expectations.
A small number of students were identified as having either missing or non-regulation uniform items and there will be contact with their parents and caregivers in the coming days as a result so that we can support them to wear the uniform correctly.
A full break down of the uniform expectations can be found on the school website, but for clarity:
A reminder that hoodies should not be worn on the way to, from, or at school.
Black jackets (such as puffers) can be worn in June, July and August.
Ties are compulsory for all students.
Blazers must be worn to formal events such as assemblies.
Students should wear navy socks and have black polishable low-top shoes.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me and once again, ngā mihi (thanks) to all of our whānau for their tautoko (support) of our uniform expectations.
Acting Deputy Principal l Kaihāpai Māori
Head Boy Message
The halls of WHS are once again filling with noise and activity. The doors to long-awaited classrooms swing open, and a new term begins. Seeing everyone back at school has made me grateful. For now, at least, we are together again and committed to learning.
It may be a bit of a shock, as we move back into our routines and schedules and away from holiday life. It's definitely been a big change for me. With the incredible financial support of Colliers, I've spent the last 3 weeks in (mostly) sunny Anakiwa, improving myself at the NZ Outward Bound school. This is one of the privileges allotted to me as Head Boy, therefore I focused on learning skills and planning goals to help me in my leadership position. It was a bit of a surreal thought that I had such a role to return to. Even whilst hauling a pack through the bush, hauling a raft across a beach, or hauling myself and a waka through the Sounds. Always in the back of my mind were the students and staff of WHS. How I had a responsibility to succeed there and to succeed now.
Even whilst writing this article, a lot has already happened in our first week back. The University of Canterbury trip went off (almost) without a hitch, and for the first time, all 5 houses have taken to the netball courts. The house points at stake in this new competition are sorely needed by all participants, for what is shaping up to be a very tight house competition.
Orange should also bring a lot of positive changes as school returns to a semblance of normal. It’s crazy to think that many of our students were yet to attend a proper assembly. It’s also been heartwarming to see everyone’s faces, with the polymer layer cast aside for many students. However, despite there no longer being a legal obligation, there’s still a social obligation. My advice is if you aren’t wearing a mask to school, keep one handy for walking through hallways and assemblies. Make sure to also respect and even encourage students who have kept wearing their mask. Let’s keep everyone safe and make sure we can continue learning in person.
It’s good to see you all again. I hope your holidays were relaxing and fun, and can’t wait to get started with another term at WHS.
The Business Pitch
This week Year 13 Business Studies students participated in their annual business pitch. Students presented their innovative and sustainable products to local business leaders, in a friendly “Dragons Den”. Feedback provided by panel members was invaluable for students to improve their product and business planning. The pitch is a requirement as part of evidence of consultation for their internal assessment.
A special thanks to our panel members: Angela Spackman, Mike Diash, Paula Ryan, Charlie Phillips, Ryan Gilbertson and Steve Hall. We truly appreciate your time and support.
Products will be on sale at school and within the community during week three and four of this term.
HoLA Social Sciences
Mihi Whakatau - Te Iti o Tāhuna
Te Iti o Tāhuna, our kapa haka performed a mihi whakatau (welcoming ceremony) for Tararua in the lead up to the Whakatipu Music Festival. Tararua are a music group that incorpoarates taonga puoro and pūrākau (stories) into their waiata. The rōpū did the school and Whakatipu proud providing a fitting welcome for our esteemed guests, who then performed a waiata in response. Me poho kererū koutou!
Gifted Education - Junior Kiwi Assessments
Kia ora Year 9 and 10 students!
Every year students test their aptitude in Maths, English and Science against other students across Aotearoa in the University of Canterbury's Kiwi Assessments. The assessments will take place at school between the 20th - 19th June and cost $9.50 per each exam you wish to do.
Please fill out this form by the 12th May if you wish to sit any of the exams:
For more information please go to:
Ngā mihi nui,
Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award at WHS
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award is a great opportunity for students to:
- Gain an internationally recognised certificate for the time and commitment they put into extracurricular activities
- Discover new interests
- Support the local community through Voluntary Service
The Award is split into three levels (Bronze, Silver and Gold), which involve progressively greater levels of commitment to three Sections (Physical Recreation, Skills and Voluntary Service).
Participants must also complete an Adventurous Journey (usually a tramp). Students receive training to plan and complete a Practice and Qualifying Journey.
- Saturday 14 May - Training day for the Adventurous Journey (Bronze, Silver and Gold)
- Saturday 28 - Sunday 29 May: Adventurous Journey Practice (Bronze)
- Friday 27 - Sunday 29 May: Adventurous Journey Practice (Silver and Gold)
- Saturday 6 - Sunday 7 August: Adventurous Journey Qualifying (Bronze)
- Friday 5 - Sunday 7 August: Adventurous Journey Qualifying (Silver)
It is not too late to register for the Award!
You can start earning recognition towards the Bronze Award from the year you turn 14. For more information and to register, you can go to the official website: https://dofehillary.org.nz/
We have also created a WHS website which gives ideas for local activities that will meet the criteria: https://sites.google.com/wakatipu.school.nz/duke-of-ed-whs/
The Google Classroom code is: uiarfxu
COYEP - Employment Rights Workshop
COYEP - Employment Rights Workshop
On Monday this week we had the Young Workers Resource Centre (YWRC) educators come in to run a workshop with our COYEP (Central Otago Youth Employment Programme) students.
This organisation has been operating for nearly 30 years providing rangatahi education on their rights at work, tips on ensuring good workplace relationships and advice on how to respond in situations when rights are breached, or when the employment relationship breaks down.
In 2021 they began their expansion to other parts of the country, running workshops on employment rights at various schools and community organisations in regions nationwide. Their expansion has been motivated by the fact that during the pandemic it has become increasingly critical for young people to know how to maintain healthy workplace relationships, to understand their rights at work, to stay safe and avoid exploitation.
They furthermore advocate for young people who are dealing with challenges or disputes in the workplace, assisting with things as simple as asking for a pay rise all the way up to helping with legal support and representation. YWRC is run by young workers, for young workers which means they can gain high levels of engagement among rangatahi.
This was a really successful workshop and very relevant and worthwhile for our young group of students. These students now have a contact of support for their future employment pathway.
Arts News & Information
The move to the TC’s has been a huge juggling act around our Itinerant lessons. If you are involved in Itinerant lessons (drums, guitar, piano, trumpet, trombone etc) please make sure you are keeping up to date with the new room allocations. These have been emailed out to you on Monday morning along with reminders being sent out throughout the week. If you are still not sure where to go- TC 9 has regular updates on the whiteboard and a teacher should be there to help if needed. Thanks for your patience and cooperation during this transition phase.
School of Rock
Andrew Lloyd Webber's Broadway and London smash hit musical, School of Rock is coming to Queenstown!
Based on the iconic, hit movie, this hilarious musical follows Dewey Finn (none other than WHS’s Jake Hansen), a failed, wannabe rock star who decides to earn an extra bit of cash by posing as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school. There he turns a class of straight-A pupils (featuring WHS pupils Indy Hamilton, Eve Pagan, Ruby Pullar, Isabelle Mahoney and Luke McKinney) into a guitar-shredding, bass-slapping mind-blowing rock band. But can he get them to the Battle of the Bands without their parents and the school’s headmistress finding out?
Don’t miss your chance to see this highly entertaining family friendly show - nine shows only from 19th May - 28th May 2022 at the Queenstown Memorial Centre.
Tickets available from Eventfinda or via www.showbizqueenstown.com or call 0800 BUY TIX.
Sign ups for New Zealand's nationwide, live, original music, youth event giving young musicians the opportunity to perform live in a professional setting closes today (Friday 5th May) The actual event is not until June 18 so there is still plenty of time to get your music sorted. For more info; https://www.smokefreerockquest.co.nz/
The Youthtown Songwriting Competition - Aotearoa
This annual competition is open and organisers are keen to receive entries from Year 9, 10 & 11 songwriting students. There will be at least 65 finalists chosen to record their song professionally in a recording studio. The mastered tracks will go on all platforms including Spotify and Bandcamp. Entries close Wednesday 11th May (Next week).
Let Us Know
The Arts department would like to know about any artistic achievements that students have attained outside of school be it in drama, dance, music or visual arts. Please send through details and photos to email@example.com.
Support the Arts
We are always looking for local professional performing and visual artists to visit our school and run workshops for our students. If you or someone you know is interested, please contact Monica Parker the Arts Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow our school’s Instagram page for recent successes or news within the school’s Arts Department at whsartdepartment.
Sport and Active Recreation News
South Island Age Group Golf
Congratulations to Year 12 student Sumin Kang who won the U19 Women's South Island Age Group Golf Championship at the end of the holidays. Sumin had a comfortable victory and was thrilled with her win. Brother Ricky Kang also finished in the top 10 of the U16 Boys competition. Well done Sumin and Ricky!
South Island U18 Rowing
Marley King Smith, Neve Bates and Olivia Key were all selected into the South Island U18 rowing squad. These three rowers competed in the North vs South regatta at Lake Karapiro last weekend. This is an awesome achievement, well done!
National Climbing Selections
Congratulations to Lucy Sinclair and Azaria Briscoe who have recently been selected into the National NZ Youth A Female Climbing team. This is a fantastic achievement, well done!
Central Otago and Otago Sports Awards Finalists
WHS is well represented at this years Central Otago Sports Awards with a number of students selected as finalists in the following categories;
Olivia Key - Junior Sportswomen
Marley King Smith – Junior Sportsman
Lucas Haas – Junior Spirit
U16 Boys Coxed Quad Sculls - Team of the Year (Toby Rorrison, Marley King Smith, Ashton White, Xavier Small, Emily Howick)
U17 Girls Coxed Quad Sculls - Team of the Year (Phoebe Cavanagh, Olivia Key, Neve Bates, Keely Erskine, Emily Howick)
John Morrison – Coach
Former student Ruby Andrews - Junior Sportswoman
The U16 Boys Coxed Quad Sculls and U17 Girls Coxed Quad Sculls crews have also been named as finalists of the Emerging Talent Team category at the Otago Sports Awards as well. Congratulations to all of these athletes and coaches.
Whakatipu Rowing Club Awards
The Whakatipu Rowing Club held their awards ceremony on Sunday afternoon where they celebrated the most successful season in club history. Congratulations to the following award winners:
Novice of the Year: Xavier Small
Most Improved: Abby Phillips
Crew of the Year: Boys Under 16 X 4 - Ashton White, Emily Howick, Josh Viana, Logan Noton, Luka Bouchier, Marley King Smith, Xavier Small, Toby Rorrison
Coaches Choice Performance of the Year: Under 17 Girls 4 Maadi cup - Emily Howick, Keely Erskine, Olivia Key, Neve Bates, Phoebe Cavanagh
Dedicated Club Member: Emily Howick
Rower of the Year: Marley King Smith
Sportsmanship, Performance and Leadership: Ashton White
Last night the Sports Department held a Player/Parent Information Session for all students involved in sport and active recreation at WHS. The session covered the WHS vision for sport, pathways, values in sport and students expectations from a school point of view and had guest speakers Aaron Callaghan from the Otago Rugby Union talking about Balance is Better and Dr Sarah Beable from Axis Sports Medicine discussing athlete welfare and wellbeing. The session was recorded and is well worth a watch over a cup of tea if you missed it:
Winter Sport Begins Week 2
A number of key winter sports are set to get underway next week, please see below for these dates.
Hockey: Begins on Friday 13th May for the 1st XI and Sunday 15th May for 2nd XI/Development Teams
Netball: Begins on Thursday 12th May for Senior grade teams and Saturday 14th May for High School grade teams.
Rugby: Begins on Saturday 14th May for all boys teams.
WHS Sports Hoody Order
If you missed out on ordering a sports hoody last term, the term 2 order is open now until Wednesday 18th May. These can be ordered and paid for on the sports website here: https://www.sporty.co.nz/wakatipu/player-zone/uniform. Hoodies cost $75.00 each.
Social Sixes Hockey
The WHS Social Sixes Hockey competition begins next Friday 13th May, there is still room for players to join teams if they are interested. This competition is open to all students of any age/gender and skill ability. Please email Miss Horn: email@example.com, if you are wanting to join this 7 week competition running on Friday afternoons 4-5pm at the Event Centre Week 2-9. No games on Friday 24th June.
Intercollegiate Clay Target Shooting
The Intercollegiate Shoot is coming up on Sunday the 15th of May at the Southland Clay Target Club.
Junior, Senior, Lady, Skeet and DTL
Entries are taken on the day.
Cost: Shooting DTL - $35.00. Shooting Skeet and DTL - $43.00.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in competing.
South Island Road Cycling Champs 9-10th July Christchurch
Any students keen to compete in the SI Road Cycling Champs can find out more details by clicking the link below. Entries open on Monday and are done through the sports department. Please email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org to get an entry in. https://schools.cyclingnewzealand.nz/events-and-results/south-island-school-road-championships/
Dr Craig Harrison - The Developing Athlete Seminar
Queenstown Snow Sports Club (Formerly Remarkables Snow Sports Academy) is proud to announce Dr Craig Harrison, internationally recognised expert in youth athlete development and host of the popular podcast “The Athlete Development Show", is presenting his talk to our community.
About Craig's talk:
Right now, more kids are dropping out of sport by their 13th birthday than ever before. For the athletes who remain, the youth sport culture is putting their mental and physical health at great risk and limiting their potential. Drawing from the latest research and more than 10 years of experience coaching kids, Craig explains where we’re going wrong, with practical tips to help your child be happy, healthy and achieve more in the sports that they love! A thought-provoking and entertaining evening with Craig, this event is a ‘must see’ for parents/caregivers with kids who love their sport and for coaches working with youth athletes.
Tickets can be purchased here: https://www.eventfinda.co.nz/2022/the-developing-athlete/queenstown
Keep Us Informed
The sports department would love to hear from you if you know of any awesome achievements from our students so that we can celebrate these as a school. Please send through details and photos to email@example.com.
Support Sport at WHS
Jump on board and support the team by liking or following the Wakatipu High School Sports Facebook page. This is the best way to stay informed and up to date with the successes of our athletes and teams and help celebrate their great achievements. https://www.facebook.com/WakatipuHighSchoolSports/
Director of Sport
Kia ora from Branches Trust
For those of you who do not know, we at the Branches Trust are dedicated to raising money to keep the Branches Camp affordable for all students and their whānau. We fundraise throughout the year to raise enough money to fund the shortfall of the camp that is not covered by the parent donation of $350.00 per student. We are a small yet dedicated and dynamic group of parents, all fanatical about the Branches Camp, here is a photo of us at our Art Auction fundraiser last August.
We are extremely pleased to announce that we fundraised $55,000.00 last year which we paid to WHS last month to cover the shortfall of 2021's Branches Camp. This is the biggest amount of money we have paid to the school since the Branches Trust began in 2006. Thank you to everyone who supported our fundraising initiatives, as a charity organisation everything we fundraise is for the benefit of the Branches Camp.
With the Branches Camp now split into two camps the costs have escalated so we encourage all Year 10 parents this year to please pay the $350.00 parent donation for the camp. This amount only goes part way to cover the costs of the camp, so the more parents who pay this the less we will have to fundraise.
Now for some other news!
2021 CAMP PHOTOS - Photos of last year's camps are now on sale, simply click on this link and fill out the form, we will get back in touch with you when they are ready for collection.
'LONG DROPS AND HARD KNOCKS' - Back in 2019 the Branches Trust launched an amazing book marking the first 50 years of the Branches Camp. It is an excellent book with lost of great stories of the camp and how it has morphed over the years. This book is also for sale on this form and there is a special deal if you buy a book and photos together.
And some 'Save the Dates'!
BRANCHES TRUST ART AUCTION - Always much anticipated, we will be running our Art Auction this year at the Memorial Hall on Friday 12th August 2022.
BRANCHES TRUST QUIZ NIGHT - After our fantastic inaugural quiz night last year we will be holding another one later in the year at Lake Hayes Pavilion on Friday 4th November 2022.
Ngā mihi nui,
Careers - Part-time Job Vacancies for Students
Looking for a babysitting job? Babysitter needed to look after a 6 year old boy at home (on Hallenstein Street) on Friday and Saturday nights in May and June from 6:40-9:40pm. To apply please call / text Kate Targett-Adams Kitchen on 021 089 808 06.
Careers Profile of the Week - This week we find out what it takes to be video journalist. Happy reading!