20th January 2022
Ngaa mihi o te tau hau
Nau mai haere mai ki te kura tuarua o Te Kauwhata 2022
Greetings and Happy New Year, welcome to Te Kauwhata College 2022! I hope that our students and their whaanau are well, have had amazing holidays, and are keen and ready for an exciting 2022 at our school.
School is partially open next week. Office staff, SLT, Deans and Faculty Leaders will be working in various venues, managing the year start up and dealing with any inquiries. Course confirmations, enrolments, and the Year 13 camp will be underway. We can manage enrolments and course changes during these days, but it is best to book an appointment to meet with the relevant person. We will be closed on Friday the 28th for our first Teacher Only Day.
Normally, we have a whole school poowhiri, (which is a welcome for everyone new, including new staff) when all our students begin, but Covid has changed all that. This year, our poowhiri to welcome new students will be held on the 3rd of February. This will be for new students and their whanau only under Orange Alert rules. Adults must be vaccinated, and all must wear masks. Covid tracking facilities will be in place.
Bilingual class opening and poowhiri
There is a ceremony for the opening of the bilingual class, and poowhiri for new staff, including our new Kaiako ki Te Reo Maaori on Tuesday the 1st February. This begins at 11am and is open to students of this class and their whanau. Other interested parties may also attend this very auspicious occasion. Please let us know if you intend coming so that we can arrange seating etc.
Second TOD - The 2nd February is another TOD school is closed that day but open for instruction the next day.
3rd February School term begins for all!
2022 is going to be a great year!
Ngaa mihi nui,
15th December 2021
Mookori ano kia rere a mihi kia koutou katoa.
As Term 4 draws to a close we look back at a year like no other!
2021 has been a rocky one for everyone, but we have achieved a lot.
The silver lining to the COVID Cloud, is that students have had to develop independence and resilience, which will stand them in good stead wherever they go. We have all, parents and teachers as well as students, had to learn how to navigate our work and communications in a digital way.
We look forward to several new initiatives for next year. One exciting development is an inaugural Bi-lingual class as part of our Year 7/8 programme. There will be an opening ceremony for this unit on the 1st of February. We look forward to welcoming all our new students and reconnecting with current ones at our whole school poowhiri on the 3rd of February.
The border between Auckland and Waikato has gone! All the very best for a safe and happy Covid-free Christmas and a wonderful summer break to everyone.
Here’s to opening up for the whole school on the 3rd of February 2022.
14th December 2021
Kia ora tatou,
Click here to be redirected to the page where you will find all the prize giving presentation videos.
The Year 13 presentation video has now been uploaded along with the award ceremony live stream recording (please note the live stream starts after 1 minute 50 seconds).
Please note the key dates for Term 1 2022 have been updated on this page.
8th December 2021
Kia ora tatou,
Click here to be redirected to the page where you will find all the prize giving presentation videos. Please note that the Year 13 videos will only be available after the Leavers' Dinner.
You can view the Year 13 Leavers' Dinner Award Ceremony via the following details:
Year 13 Leavers' Dinner Ceremony
Date: Dec 9, 2021
Time: 05:30 PM Auckland, Wellington
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 853 8852 9185
Ngaa mihi nui,
Te Kauwhata College
18th November 2021
Kia ora tatou,
The college senior students have finished classes today. For most of them, there is only an exam or two to sit, or possibly an assessment to hand in. I want to thank our seniors for the way that they have managed themselves during this very disrupted year, and particularly the way that they have complied with all our rules around safety. We also wish them all the best for their exams, the holiday break and for those leaving, for their futures.
Next week we are open for our Juniors. We want people to feel that it is safe to send children to school. If seniors are on site for exams or tutorials, they will be kept separated from the junior students, except on the buses, which will be running as normal. Please note that masks are required by all students on the bus, unless they have a doctor’s certificate granting medical exemption. Although advisable, these are not compulsory in school.
Although we are open, and encourage students to attend, we do respect the decision of parents who choose not to send their children. If you let us know that your child will be continuing to learn from home, (thank you to those who have already informed us of this), we will code their attendance as ‘offsite learning’. Some online learning will be available, and The Ministry have assured me that they are chasing the hard pack learning resources, which should arrive any day. If students do not attend and we have not heard from parents, we will of course, in the interests of safety, be sending the text stream messages as a reminder. We do not want to assume a student is learning from home if you have in fact sent them and they have not arrived.
Lunches are again being provided for all students.
Te Kauwhata College Prizegivings for 2021
As a school, we have had to decide how we will deliver our prizegivings this year due to Covid, the ever-changing alert levels, and risks associated with large gatherings. Our decision is that we will create Prizegiving Presentations for Years 7 – 12. There will be one presentation for each year level. A Sports Awards presentation will also be created to celebrate the achievements of our students who have been involved in sports at Te Kauwhata College this year.
The Year 11 and 12 Presentations will be made available to view on our school website from the 26th November and the Year 7, 8, 9 & 10 Presentations will be available to view from the 8th December. The Sports Awards presentation will be available to view from the 26th November also.
Students who have won awards will be able to come into school on the 9th & 10th of December to collect their certificates and medals. If they have won a cup, they will have their photo taken with it. Photos of students with their awards will be published on our school website.
If your child is a prize winner and you do not wish for your child’s photo to appear on the website, please contact the school prior to them coming in on the 9th & 10th December.
Year 13 Award Evening
We wanted to do something special for our Year 13 students. In order to recognise the achievements of our Year 13 graduates, an evening at our local café ‘Kiki’ has been organised for the 9th December starting at 5:00pm. A prizegiving ceremony will take place first followed by a meal. Certificates, medals and cups will be awarded and the Dux for 2021 will be announced. Year 13 students and their whaanau will be invited to attend this evening. More details regarding this evening will be sent out soon.
16th November 2021
Kia ora koutou,
As you will all have heard by now, Waikato moves back to Level 2 tomorrow, which means that this school can manage a transitioned re-opening open to all, under L2 protocols. I have taken MOE advice on this. They are as surprised as the rest of us at the sudden shift down a level and have assured me that our focus for the returning Juniors must be on their safety and wellbeing. As you know, we do still have our seniors on site until Friday. With this in mind and in the interests of the health and safety of all, those parents who have no choice (as at Level 3) can, if necessary, send their children to school from tomorrow, but for the safety of all the younger children, it would be wisest to keep them home until Monday when there will only be juniors in classes and we can focus on the safety and welfare of these students.
Obviously, once we are open to all, we want to encourage all to attend, and reassure whanau that school is safe. If you are happy to keep your juniors at home until Monday as per the previous plan, we will be happy to support them with online learning (the promised hard packs have still not arrived but may yet do so). From Monday, there will be an expectation that students attend, unless you have communicated with the school. In Level 2, the school is back to near normal, just without assemblies, trips, visitors, or special events. It also means that masks are recommended indoors and required on buses.
School lunches will be available from Monday. Libelle lunches are not available this week for junior students on such short notice. Parents planning to return children to school tomorrow must send them with a packed lunch. We will keep you updated on this.
Senior exams will be proceeding and the usual rules will prevail around juniors keeping away from the Hall area.
For those Junior students whose parents do not wish them to return on Monday, we will provide the hard packs when they do arrive. Teachers will all be busy with face-to-face teaching once more, so there will be less provided online. We will ask that all devices are returned to school with the child.
The wearing of masks under Level 2 is recommended, but not required – except on the bus or other public transport. Drinking fountains are available; Sport activities within school can go ahead as they did in term 2; Physical distancing should still be maintained as far as is reasonably possible. Sanitising of hands and cleansing of shared gear will continue. No visitors, including parents will be permitted onsite until further notice.
Should there be further information that comes to me from MOE I will let you all know as soon as possible. Thank you for your cooperation and understanding with this. We want to do the best for all our students.
Ngaa mihi nui,
12th November 2021
Kia ora koutou,
I want to begin by congratulating our senior students for their attendance and compliance with all our protocols during these last few weeks. We asked them to wear masks; to remain on site; to focus on their academic chances; and to eat the school lunches and dispose of rubbish appropriately. They have done so brilliantly. We want to allow them now the best opportunity for success in their external examinations and wish them all the very best.
We are spreading our junior student attendance out to be assured that we can properly physically space them in classrooms. Schools have been left to determine what works best for them and their communities. Because we are Year 7 to 13 and because so many of our students arrive by bus, we cannot accommodate them all and abide by the rules without doing it this way. We have also tried to consider some consistency for families, particularly those who have children in many levels and in both the Primary school and the college.
By having roughly half of our whole junior school population in each day, we are trying to be fair to all, and also ensuring that the physical distancing that we do in the classroom is not jeopardised by crowding on the bus – where, there are no actual spacing rules (buses will run as normal, though masks must be worn on the bus).
Online learning will continue as it has done, though the teachers may not be able to spend as much time online given that they will have students physically present as well.
I am not able to share details of our student vaccination numbers because of privacy, although we do continue to gather that data, in case it is needed by Public Health. If you have not yet responded to our vaccination survey, please do so as soon as possible.
On their return to school, we ask that our juniors follow the same rules as we have had in place for our seniors - so that we can keep everyone safe.
All students will be required to wear masks, on the bus and in the classroom.
Physical distance will be maintained in the classrooms and encouraged out of doors as well.
School lunches will be available, food must not be shared and any uneaten must be placed in the bins provided. All students will remain on site and there will be no visitors.
Any students failing to comply with these requirements may be asked to return to offsite learning.
We will aim to make the return to school as enjoyable as possible, while also trying to ensure some academic catch up. Therefore, we will not be running junior Exams and instead will be doing diagnostic formative evaluations to help us do our best for all students at the start of 2022. In addition, reporting will be different this year - I have copied below a comment from my DP in charge of reporting.
Year 7 -10 students will receive a report on the 30th November either by email or mail. Due to the lockdowns in the second half of the year, teachers will be reporting on the core subject areas (English, Social Studies, Maths, Science and Physical Education). Where appropriate, grades will be given for units of work or teachers will use overall teacher judgement to give an indication of progress using Above, At or Below. Teachers will also indicate progress using the Key Competencies (Managing Self, Relating to Others, Thinking, Using Language Symbols and Texts, Participating and Contributing). There will be time following the reports going out for parents to get in touch with teachers either by email, phone or zoom meetings if they wish to discuss anything about their child’s report.
25th October 2021
Kia ora koutou,
During the last week we have seen our senior students return to school. All workers on the site have had to provide proof of their negative Covid test and vaccination status. We had everyone masked and following full L3 safety protocols so that we could focus on doing the best we can to support those senior students returning to school, to engage in face-to-face learning and interacting safely with their peers. 106 students attended and were responsible and mature in their acceptance of the need for safety measures and for a strong focus on academic progress. Many schools have not been able to open at all, or only in very limited ways, so we are delighted that so many are attending, and with the way that everyone is pulling together at Te Kauwhata College. Each week we wait for the Ministerial announcements and hope for a return to normality, and our hearts sink every time we see positive Covid cases climbing in the NZ community. This last week we have learned that our junior students will not return to school, in person, any earlier than the 15th of November. Even after that there is likely to be some form of staggered return. This may be partly because of the link to the requirement for all staff to be vaccinated by that date, in order to keep the vulnerable under 12s safe, but also because of the proximity to senior exams. The reasoning behind keeping the Year 9 and 10 students away as well is so that the numbers on site are kept as low as possible while senior students are given the maximum chance of success. This may all change once the NCEA exams begin. Therefore, to try to give some certainty, my own belief is that all families of students in Years 7 - 10, will need to settle in for another longish haul of online and distant learning from home - unless there is a drop down to Level 2 for Te Kauwhata. We are promised firmer guidance on this in the coming week. The only junior students who can attend school in Level 3 are those who were already attending. We cannot have any explosion of numbers now, because the opening up for seniors is based on the number of people who can safely be on site. We are not allowed to permit juniors and seniors to mix at school - even though some may have ridden on a school bus together. This does make managing the separate Junior/Senior Bubbles a challenge. We do also have the option of Hard Packs provided by the MOE now, as well as Online learning, so we will be ordering as many of these as we can, in the coming week, for those who need or prefer them. We know that the appetite for online learning amongst our juniors is waning, and it has been hard for our juniors to maintain focus particularly after the 'holiday ' break. As teachers, we do all understand how hard all this is for parents, who are also struggling with their own lock down problems, and we at school, are trying to find ways to reconnect with and enthuse our distant students. Thank you to all those students and whaanau persevering from home. Thank you to our seniors, who are maintaining and following our safety protocols. Please continue to do so, to keep each other safe, and to protect the opportunity that you all have in attending school in person. Please remember that all the rules extend to the school buses. Kia kaha everyone. Deborah Hohneck Principal
26th October 2021
Kia ora koutou,
Tomorrow, all our senior students are able to return to the school site, regardless of where they live. All Junior students, Years 7 – 10 will continue with online learning, apart from those very few who have already been attending at Level 3. These students will be separated from the seniors.
I am just writing to hopefully reassure you all that we have safety plans in place as required by the MOH and MOE, and to let you know some of the protocols that we will need to follow.
Under the L3 Protocols we will ensure that we are sanitising hands on entry to classrooms; wearing masks (please ensure students have their own appropriate mask to wear - this will be a requirement of students and staff in classrooms and on the bus); ensuring that there are no large gatherings; maintaining physical distance wherever reasonably practicable; keeping the rooms ventilated, and so on. The requirements for L3 will be posted on classroom walls and in our work spaces.
No visitors will be allowed on site. No students will be permitted to leave the site. Parents collecting students or similar will be required to sign/scan in and stay outside the main entrance. We will make the rules clear to students. The purpose of allowing them to attend school in person is to help them to achieve their academic goals. Socialising is not the reason for coming, but we understand that they will want to connect with their friends. Outside, physically distant, at lunchtime and interval is the time for this. Libelle lunches will be available at lunchtime.
We will assess how things go tomorrow and create a register of attending students. If necessary, I can choose to close again, or to stagger attendance. I do not want to do that unless needed, because it does create extra stress on everyone. We will need full compliance from our students if we are to remain open, so, to keep everybody safe, if any students do not comply with any of our Public Health measures they may be asked not to come in again.
All our staff attending tomorrow are negative tested and most are already vaccinated.
Tomorrow morning students will go to their mentor classes, and then to their regular timetabled classes.
Thank you for your patience and perseverance with online learning, we hope to return to Level 2 soon, and to have all our students back on site. Meanwhile, stay safe.
Noho ora mai,
25th October 2021
Kia ora koutou,
On Saturday night, the MOH announced that all senior students will be permitted to attend school in person, even if that means crossing a Levels border.
It would be advisable to carry some form of student ID if travelling by car.
Please see this link for the full announcement from the MOH.
Buses will run as per normal and students aged under 12 are not required to wear face coverings on school transport.
Providing face coverings is the responsibility of individuals and caregivers. Transport providers are not required to have face coverings available for student use.
All drivers must wear a face covering on school transport services unless they have an exemption. Information on face covering exemptions can be found on the COVID-19 website.
To request an Exemption Card, please contact the Disabled Persons Assembly NZ on 04 801 9100 or email@example.com.
Ngaa mihi nui,
22nd October 2021
Kia ora koutou,
As I am sure you are all aware, a ruling has been made that we will indeed, remain at Alert Level 3 Lockdown next week. Sadly, that means that the 'holiday' we had scheduled for Tuesday becomes a moot point, absorbed as were the term holidays, into staying home.
Senior students, and those few juniors already attending under Level 3 rules, can attend school from Wednesday 27th October. Unfortunately, juniors will remain at home learning online, for at least another week.
All teachers will be present in school, and we encourage senior students to attend, to complete assessments and prepare as best they can for NCEA Exams starting 22nd November.
A Google form, along with a privacy statement, will be sent out to all parents next week so that we can gather data on student vaccination status. As previously stated, vaccination of those over 12 years old is recommended but is still a matter of individual choice.
Please also note that the school lunches will not be available until midday as they are coming from Hamilton during this Level 3. Students may wish to bring food for interval.
Ngaa mini nui,
21st October 2021
Kia ora koutou,
All senior students (that is Years 11 – 13 ) will be expected to come into school in person, on Wednesday 27th October – regardless of the Level we are in. All teachers will be on site.
If we move to Level 2, all students will be able to attend school on Wednesday. Tuesday remains a holiday as per our year calendar.
18th October 2021
Kia ora koutou,
The college is open at Level 3 which means online learning continues for most students and teachers. We will be waiting for the announcement this afternoon before arranging for any distribution of devices – apart from senior NCEA students, who can come in from tomorrow to collect a suitable device if they need one.
An announcement regarding Junior students and issuing of devices will be made tomorrow if we remain in Level 3. School will not open at Level 2 until Wednesday at the earliest, only if we are able to drop down a Level at midnight tonight. We have been given 48 hours to prepare, but if we have not distributed devices, we will be able to open sooner, especially since we have an extra day off at Labour weekend.
14th October 2021
MOE Guidance RE: Start of Term at Level 3
Teenaa koutou katoa,
I hope that all our students and their whaanau have been able to get some quality relaxation over the term break. We were all looking forward to being able to open again in Term 4 at Alert Level 2, with everyone on site, but alas that is not to be. Remaining at Level 3 for Monday means that the school is not open except to the very few children of essential workers – as the last time we were at Level 3. Online teaching and learning will continue, and my team and I will be using Monday to prepare for whichever eventuality we face on Tuesday. We will not know more until then, but please be assured I will let everyone know as soon as I do, what is in store for us.
Please enjoy the weekend ahead and meanwhile, please find below the guidance that I have been sent by the MOE.
As you know, Government made the early decision to shift our region to Alert Level 3 while health authorities quickly track down contacts, and test and isolate confirmed cases of COVID-19 in our community. Yesterday, Minister Hipkins confirmed we will remain at this level for a further five days until 11.59pm Monday 18 October.
At Alert Level 3 you legally must stay within your household bubble unless for essential personal movement, including going to work and going to school.
We are therefore open on Monday for only the small number of children who need to attend. All our usual safety precautions for Alert Level 3 will be in place which include following all the recommendations from the public health experts.
This means we will regularly clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces, encourage everyone to frequently wash their hands and cover their coughs and sneezes, and keep everyone physically distanced from others as much as possible (one metre inside and two metres outside). We will also keep school bubbles to no more than 10 students. These bubbles will not mix with other bubbles.
Students in Years 9-13 are also now required to wear face coverings when at school in Alert Level 3, as are the staff. Face coverings are now also required to be worn on school transport for students in Years 9-13.
Our contact tracing systems will be in place, which includes our attendance register and visitor register, and we will be limiting staff onsite with the majority of our team working from home.
You can also assist everyone’s safety by keeping your child at home if they are feeling unwell and please do contact your GP or Healthline, to seek advice about getting tested.
Our staff on-site will have been tested for COVID-19 before they get back to work and we are moving toward having 100% of our staff vaccinated – so we are all playing our part in keeping our community safe.
It is also now legally required that we hold a COVID-19 vaccination register for all eligible students and staff.
If we were to have a case of COVID-19 in our school, public health authorities will want to know if we are a school with a high vaccination rate. This information will then be used as part of the local health authority’s risk assessment. The more highly vaccinated we are (staff and eligible students), the less likely it will be that we will have to close down for a long period of time, or we might not need to close at all.
We will therefore need to know if your child has had their first or second vaccine dose or is exempted from being vaccinated. This information will be held by us in accordance with the Privacy Act and will only be shared with public health authorities.
We are therefore getting our data collection system in place and will get in touch with you again very soon.
We will continue to support all children who remain learning from home, through our distance learning programme.
While we know how difficult it is trying to work from home as well as support your child’s learning, please keep your child at home if there is an appropriate carer available. For those of you who are essential workers, and who have no other option, we look forward to seeing your child at school next week., under the same guidelines as last time. Please contact the school by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org if you need to send your child to school, unless you have already done so. If your child needs a bus service, please visit the Waikare Bus Network website to register. Please provide your child with a mask – to be worn on the bus and at school.
We are proud of how our community has responded to this outbreak, but the mahi isn’t yet done. Please continue to follow all the alert level requirements including staying at home, getting tested for COVID-19 if you are feeling unwell, and for your own sake and for the health of your whaanau, please get vaccinated. I’ve included some information about vaccinations to support decision making.
These are the very best things we can do to keep our community as safe as possible and get everyone back to school.
Ngaa mihi nui,
1st October 2021
Kia ora i te whaanau,
I want to begin by thanking everyone for all their hard work, patience, and resilience over the last term. It is such a pity that disruption and crisis has become almost expected for schools and businesses. It is not forgotten by us, how hard it also is for families - especially those locked down juggling essential work and childcare or supervising sometimes resentful teenagers working online.
The way ahead for our college next term will be to continue with the Level 2 protocols, which will mean, by and large, no trips, or visits, in or out of school. We will need to focus on teaching and learning and getting our students to the point that they need to be at in preparation for their following year.
I need to address this issue as I have had several enquiries from parents and have now had some information from the Ministry of Education.
As a school, we are a government organisation, and staff are all civil servants. As such, we take orders from those higher in the government hierarchy. (That is why I am writing this from a distance). As a school we do not have any role in mandating vaccination for our staff or students. I am not going to ask anyone their vaccination status, though my personal preference would be that we are all safe. If any mandate should happen, it will come as a government decree. But let me impress - that has not happened, and there is no indication from any official source, that it will.
We will take our lead on vaccination protocols or rules, from the Ministry of Health and the Minister of Education. At this point in time the directive on this at least, is clear. We are to be supportive and encouraging of vaccinations, but we have no role in compunction. If we are asked by our local health provider to make our premises available for vaccination of students and community, we are to do so - but again, vaccination is still an individual choice, which must be respected. If vaccinations of students on site occur, it will be with full information offered to whaanau and will only occur if consent is given. They would be conducted in the same way that happens now for the various vaccinations done by the Public Health Nurses.
It may be that TK Health will offer them to our students, in our hall, level by level, and whaanau members will be encouraged to make use of this as well. That is all still a 'may be', but there are strong indications from the Minister of Education that it is likely and should be supported. None of this will happen without our whole school community being fully informed.
As you will have seen, the Auckland border will remain in place. This creates issues for all our families living on the northern side of that arbitrary line. I am still actively engaging in trying to find solutions for these students. Without a lot of traction I admit, but I am still trying.
Please all, take a break over the school holiday if you can. Some students may need to complete some studies, but everyone needs to take some time out and right now, looking after the health and well-being of each one of us is the most important thing to do. Take stock, look at the trees budding green, the spring blossoms all around, and know that the sun will be shining soon.
Hoping to see everybody back at school next term.
Ngaa mihi nui,
22nd September 2021
Kia ora tatou
I am writing to summarise our position this week and next regarding Alert Levels.
Te Kauwhata remains at Level 2. This means that school is open and safe for all those who live in that Level. Unfortunately, as a 'border school' this impacts on some of our staff and students who cannot yet attend school. We have 6 teachers and a principal who have all been repeatedly denied travel passes. We have a reasonable number of students who cannot cross the border - even those who live right on it and do not need to pass through a check point, cannot come to school. These decisions are made by the Ministry of Health and are upheld by the police. The Ministry of Education has little influence on these decisions and a school principal has none.
The recent outbreak in Whakatiwai has meant that our area is under tight scrutiny. The area in North Hauraki affected has been placed in Level 3 along with the rest of Auckland, and there is no leeway given for anyone in our school community to cross the border for education purposes. It is important to let everyone know, that we are following these protocols as stipulated, to reassure everyone in the Level 2 zone that we are keeping our school safe.
Online learning continues for those either Locked Down, immuno-compromised or otherwise unsafe. Please do send your children to school in all other cases if you are in Level 2. If you are in Level 3, please continue with online schooling and do not hesitate to get in touch with the teachers directly if worried - this is particularly important for the senior students. Unfortunately, the rules around allowing children of essential workers to attend school at Level 3 only apply if the school is also in Level 3. These children still cannot cross the border - the border trumps all else. I have checked this out exhaustively. I doubt that there will be any change and just hope that we make Level 2 in time for the holidays.
I am so sorry that we are in this difficult situation, it is hard on everybody, and is none of our doing. All we can do is try to manage as best we can, keep communicating, keep patient and tolerant and try to be supportive of each other. It is more important than ever to remember to keep kind. Be assured that I continue to advocate on behalf of all our students.
21st September 2021
Te Kauwhata College remains open at Alert Level 2. All safety protocols are being adhered to. The outbreak in northern Hauraki does not affect this, however, for families in or near the new outbreak, please see the advice on the MoH website as listed here.
If you are unsure, or nervous about sending your child to school, please be assured that if you wish to keep them home, online learning will remain in place.
Please click here to view the information from the MoE.
15th September 2021
9th September 2021
Kia ora e te whaanau,
Welcome back to Level 2.
Essentially, it is school as usual for us in Te Kauwhata, except that we follow the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Education guidelines for this Alert Level.
6th September 2021
Teenaa Koutou katoa
Thank you to everyone, staff, students and whaanau for perseverance through the Level 4 and Level 3 Lock Downs. I have some important announcements that I will keep as brief as possible.
School is open on Thursday
Everyone south of the border at Mercer can celebrate a shift on Wednesday morning to Level 2, which means that school will reopen for all those who live south of the border, on Thursday. Those who live on the other side remain at Level 4 and will continue in online learning.
Students are all able to attend school on Thursday morning - buses will run as usual and school lunches will be supplied. Other details will be communicated as we get further guidance from the Ministries of Health and Education.
School is closed Wednesday
Schools have all been given 48hrs to prepare for this, so Te Kauwhata College staff will come into school on Wednesday on a Teacher Only Day to do this preparation. It is important that we prepare the school properly to keep everyone safe. Some of that preparation will be restoring school devices to their usual functions, so if you are able to drop your child's school device off at school ahead of Thursday, that would be very helpful. Early return will ensure that the classrooms are functioning when students return. Otherwise please be sure that students bring their school device and charger back in with them. Other preparation will involve the teachers being able to meet in their departments to plan the way ahead for their students. There will be no timetabled classes operating online on Wednesday.
Teacher contact with home - including Senior reports
Online learning will continue for those across the border and some others unable to attend school, as it did last time. Teachers will continue to communicate with whanau using a range of options. Particularly the mid-year senior report will be done differently this year. We would normally already be well into writing these reports but given that the lock down has disrupted this process, and that there has been a lot of change we have decided that the teachers will communicate student progress to parents in real time, as they are already, in a way that hopefully suits both parties. Parents of senior students may receive one of three forms of communication - an email, phone call or ZOOM invitation from each of the class teachers. The aim with this is not to overwhelm with emails and other contact, but to give timely information, as term 3 is very near to an end.
Any further information, including advice on mask wearing etc will be posted before Thursday. Please watch for this advice as it is updated. Thank you all for your patience and perseverance.
Ngaa mihi nui,
31st August 2021
Kia ora koutou,
Please find below a link to the registration form for those who need bus transport to school during Level 3. Please register before your child attends school - in the interests of the COVID Alert, no one will be permitted to get on a school bus if not already registered.
Here’s a link to the registration form for school bus transport during alert level 3. Click on the Contact EasyBus button.
29th August 2021
Kia ora koutou
If you are an essential worker and you are required at work on Wednesday, and can make no other arrangements for your child, SLT will be on site at the college, making the school site safe for Level 3 learning. If you need to drop your child at school that day, please contact Angela Wallace who will be the SLT member in charge of managing Level 3 student lists. She can be emailed on email@example.com . We will need to know in advance who we can expect.
All learning will be online, as described earlier.
Please note, this is only for Year 7 to 10 students. Senior students are to continue with online work at home unless organised with SLT.
27th August 2021
Kia ora koutou
As most of you will no doubt know by now, we will be moving back down the Alert Levels into Level 3 from Wednesday.
This means that the school remains closed but that some staff can be on site to manage Admin and to provide supervision for the very small number of students who are the children of essential workers and for whom no other arrangements can be made. It is important to understand that this is not school as we know it. The children who come will continue to learn online and remotely, with their regular classmates and teacher as if they were at home. They will be socially distanced and in small 'Bubbles'. The teachers will be continuing to teach their timetabled classes remotely just as they have been doing all week.
If you are an essential worker and you do need to send your child to school at Level 3, you must let the school office know so that plans can be made. You must email the school at firstname.lastname@example.org before Wednesday 12pm (1st September) or you can call the school office between 9am and 12pm on Wednesday morning 1st September (this is when we will have staff available to man the phones). School buses as such will not run. If your child is a regular bus student and school bus transport is required, we need to know this when you email or call the school so that arrangements can be made.
Please note, this is only for Year 7 to 10 students. Senior students are to continue with online work at home unless organised with SLT.
The school will be closed for students on Wednesday 1st September. Staff will be on site on Wednesday to prepare for the kura to open at Level 3. For students of essential workers who are planning to attend during Level 3, school will start at 8:50am on Thursday morning (2nd September). As soon as students arrive at school they must sign in at the front desk located in the hall foyer. From here, they will be taken to their learning space in the computer room. Break times will be as per normal school bell times. However, social distancing protocols will be maintained during this time and a space will be provided for students to eat and rest. School lunches will not be provided during Level 3.
We need to have absolute contact tracing in place so only students who are on our list as having been verified as needing to be at school, can attend. Please be aware that abiding by all the rules at Level 3 will see us reach Level 2 sooner. We are all looking forward to a return to normality, but we are not quite there yet.
All students who can log on to their Google classroom should be doing so or making some form of direct contact with their teachers who are working hard to ensure that relevant and quality learning is available. We cannot afford to just 'sit this out' or we will find that we are losing academic ground. Thank you to all those who do log in regularly. For those with limited connectivity, we should be better able to provide printed resources during level 3.
Noho ora mai
25th August 2021
Kia ora koutou,
The good news, is that all our people awaiting test results, including those who have been at places of interest, have so far been found to be negative.
Yesterday the MOE notified us that delivery of hard packs of generic resources are being prioritised for those in Auckland and in full isolation. They are however available on their websites and should soon, if not already, be available in printable formats, so that parents with access to a printer can do this for themselves. Similarly, if students have no device and no internet access, we may at some point be able to print off and mail out these resources. However, the absolute best thing for each student is to make contact, even if just by email with their teachers (remember to get the student to check their school emails) as the teachers know their learning needs.
Click on this link to view the comments from the MOE which include the references to the TV learning.
24th August 2021
Dear Parents and Caregivers,
Please see the attached letter from the Ministry of Education regarding Te Kauwhata College Enrolment Scheme.
You will be able to view information on the Home Zones and the details of the scheme by using the link to the MOE website provided in the letter.
You will also be able to join a ZOOM meeting to discuss the Enrolment Scheme on Wednesday 1st September at 3.30pm.
You may also email your queries at any time using the email address given in the letter.
Click here to view the letter.
Principal's Assistant & Board Secretary
22nd August 2021
Today we issued devices and will do so again tomorrow - at set times, and under strict protocols. It is important that we do this following the guidelines that are there to control the spread of the virus. These are the only times that anyone is allowed on the school site, and there must only be one person at a time. If anyone gets this wrong, we will lose the right to this exception. MOE has today also reminded us that there is to be no use of playing fields, playgrounds, or other school facilities during Alert Level 4.
Additional information is continually being posted on the MOH website about 'locations of interest' - a growing list. Other members of our school community have been at some of the later ones, including Pukekohe High School. The Ministry of Health is working directly with any individuals who have been identified as at places of high risk and those individuals have been notified to stay isolated for 14 days, even after returning a negative test. If a positive test is returned from any member of the school community who has been at a 'location of interest' they will be notified immediately as will I. (The school will only inform publicly of any positive cases or The school community will be informed of any related positive cases and the next steps…). The school will then be informed as to next steps, which are likely to include further closure and isolation. Any of us could find ourselves in this situation at any point. This is a thorough and precautionary approach. Let's not get ahead of ourselves and be fearful of something that may not happen. If we follow the rules, stay calm and keep kind, we will all be fine.
If isolation is causing anyone anxiety, please use the various links available and speak to a qualified counsellor. The consolation is that we are all locked down anyway. We are all in this together. We managed it last time, and we will manage it again.
22nd August 2021
A huge thanks is due to my SLT and other staff members who have worked over the weekend to ready devices for collection from the front door. This was managed carefully in appropriate socially distanced ways, in accordance with the rules laid out by the MOH and MOE. As a school community we are very glad of the bending of the rules that has allowed us to do this, Thank you to the parents who turned up today at the appropriate times, correctly masked and keeping their distances, which makes everyone feel safer and a part of the same big team.
Please note for future collections, including tomorrow, that the wearing of masks, in public, is now mandatory across NZ. Just as you will not be served in a supermarket unless you are wearing a mask, so, will you not be issued a device. Please do continue to respect these limitations in the interests of the safety and good relations of everyone.
Again, thank you all who do their bit, and particularly to my staff who are working so hard to ensure that we are all ready for learning online at this difficult time.
21st August 2021
As you all know, the list of ‘locations of interest’ for the Delta variant of the COVID virus grows daily, the chances of some of us having been at one of those and therefore potentially in contact with the virus, grows accordingly. It has today come to our attention that one of our students was indeed present at a location of interest last week. We are following MOE and MOH protocols - the student has been tested and is isolating at home. It is more than likely that there will be a negative result, and if not, there will be little change to our current situation. ie locked down, teaching and learning from home. We will as always keep everyone informed of any developments. Meanwhile, please try to enjoy family weekends - online learning begins in earnest on Monday. Deborah
19th August 2021
We hope that you are all well and that this Lock Down is a short one, just a bit of a mid-term break for students.
We are all likely to find out tomorrow if we are going to be able to return to school next week. If not, we will be able to access the school site to arrange for the issuing of devices and learning resources should the Lock Down continue for any length of time. Please be assured that student learning will be disrupted as little as possible. NZQA is already adjusting things to allow for this disruption and our teachers have spent the last 2 days planning the way ahead to ensure continued learning for all. Meanwhile keep safe, hope for speedy control of this outbreak and a resulting return to normal. But if not, know that we have done this all before, and have learned from the experience.
Don't hesitate to contact teachers and deans by email. They are working and are there to support you and your students with learning and wellbeing.
You can click view their emails on the Staff page on the website.
Ngaa mihi nui,
18th August 2021
Teenaa Koutou katoa
I hope that everyone is safely locked down and that you have all been able to manage this latest disruption to our daily lives.
To those of you who are essential workers, and continuing in the face of renewed threat - on behalf of the school, I would like to convey our deepest thanks and respect.
Our teachers are planning for the active online teaching that we may need, by meeting via ZOOM with each other and have been in touch with many students already. We are all aware that the priority for everyone in the first day or two of lockdown is ensuring the safety and welfare of everyone in the whaanau.
The Delta variation of Covid19 is highly contagious and we must prepare for the likelihood that there will be an extended period to this Lockdown in one form or another. If your family has sufficient devices at home, students can simply log on to Google classrooms as normal.
If you have no device, a plan will be put in place to allow us to get these issued next week. MOE is working with the government to put processes in place to allow us to distribute learning resources safely.
If you have limited connectivity, please contact your provider. MOE has extended the free internet provision that was negotiated last time, until at least the end of this year, all our students have the right to this provision.
Supports are also in place for any who are suffering hardships because of the sudden Lock down - be they social, emotional or financial. see the accompanying notes under the MOE link. Please don't hesitate to use these if you find a need. Please also remember that you can reach out to all teachers, SLT , Deans or Guidance staff if you are worried about your children.
17th August 2021
Kia ora koutou katoa,
As you will all know by now, we are in full lockdown for at least the rest of this week. Unfortunately, we have not been given enough warning to hand out devices or prepare students in any way. Let’s hope that it is just 3 days. When I know more, I will let you know but meanwhile please just obey government instructions and keep your children home. School is closed for all until further notice.
Teachers will be active online but are aware that students may not have their devices at home. If lockdown lasts into next week, we will be in touch with further plans for teaching and learning.
I will look for the guidance from MOE and pass that along to all as soon as I have it.
We have managed this before. Stay home, stay safe, care for your own whaanau.
24th June 2021
Please note that As you will all be aware, Wellington has moved into Level 2 after a traveller from Australia who since tested positive for COVID-19, passed through. This does not affect us, though we do all need to beware of the complacency that has crept in to our country over the last few months. Here in Te Kauwhata, as elsewhere, we remain at Level 1. Any students who have been in Wellington, and at places of interest have been contacted and asked to self isolate, be tested, and stay home for 14 days or until they have a negative test result and are told that it is safe to leave isolation. We do have one pupil in this situation. Ministry of Health and Education advice is that there is no cause for alarm. You will be contacted directly if any further actions are needed.
I’m sure you were all pleased to hear today’s update on the case who visited Wellington over the weekend. It’s reassuring that there have been no positive test results at this time and the man’s partner has returned a negative test and is asymptomatic at this point. With so many locations of interest we know there are large numbers of people who want to do their bit to support the health response. As Dr Bloomfield said today, if you are a contact of someone who has been at a location of interest (eg household member, workmate, friend) you do not need to isolate or be tested, unless specifically instructed by health authorities to do so. Everyone is encouraged to keep doing the right thing, even if they have had a negative test result initially.
16th June 2021
Please note that Friday, 18th June, is a holiday for Te Kauwhata College. This day is to coincide with the National Field days and has been a planned day on our calendar.
Monday 21st June will be Day 3 on the timetable.
20th May 2021
Go to the News/Events page to view the latest Newsletter.
Pink Shirt Day is tomorrow (21st May). Students can wear mufti to school but are required to give a gold coin donation.
14th May 2021
Teacher Only Day
Please be reminded that Wednesday 19th May 2021 is a TEACHER ONLY DAY and the school will be closed for instruction to students.
This is a Ministry of Education directed Teacher Only Day and teachers will be focusing on the education change package.
Please note also, that Thursday (20th May) will be Day 1 when students return to school.
If you have any questions, please call the school office.
13th April 2021
Parent Teacher Interviews
Wednesday 14th April
3:30pm to 6:30pm
Book online: www.schoolinterviews.co.nz
See students' reports for booking details
25th March 2021
Consultation with schools affected by the establishment of an enrolment zone at Te Kauwhata College has taken place. We are discussing this at the next Board meeting, which is on Wednesday 31st of March at 6.30pm at the College. If you have concerns or queries, please make a written submission to the Board. The Ministry of Education is making itself available to discuss these, or to meet with interested parties at this Board meeting. If you wish to attend in person to meet with the MOE person, please let the school know on: email@example.com.
5th March 2021
During these uncertain times school bus drivers need certainty around who should or should not be coming to school under the different Alert Levels. For those pupils in or around the Level 2 and 3 border areas, please fill out the registration form on the website link below.
1st March 2021
Unfortunately, as no doubt you all know, Auckland has returned to COVID Alert Level 3 and the rest of the country to Level 2.
While Te Kauwhata remains in Level 2 there is little change in the way that the school has been operating over the last few weeks. Please be assured that school is safe for your children, as are school buses, and will remain open to all students. Just a reminder that there are no trips or visits from outsiders, but that school groups are safe to gather.
We do have a few teachers and students who have been affected by the revised border boundaries. I have applied for travel exemptions for all our affected staff, but these are very difficult to get. Affected teachers can teach their classes online, from their homes. While this is helpful, it does mean that some classes will be in school without their regular teachers. There is still a need to put a responsible and qualified person in charge of each class, so at this time, our relief resources are stretched. The result is that some students will not always have access to their regular teacher, or to specialised facilities, such as science labs, workshops etc. Please be patient, the teachers and I are doing all we can to get them into their classrooms and we all do our very best to ensure that teaching and learning remains the focus and is as uninterrupted as possible. We need to be thankful, that we in Te Kauwhata, so close to Auckland, are not in Level 3 and that we can proceed with close to normality. Our sympathies go out to our colleagues, students and families in the Auckland area.
The boundaries are different this time and run south of the Waikato River so that Onewhero and Port Waikato are included in the northern zone. Naike and Waikaretu areas are in the southern zone, with the border running around halfway between Limestone Downs and Waikaretu and the border also runs just west of the highway south of Meremere. This should not affect bus routes, but it may affect some students in the border areas. Please check the map on the COVID website below if you are in doubt. If your child is residing in Level 3 they will be unable to attend school. Ring us to let us know so that we can provide online learning options.
19th February 2021
We have returned to COVID Alert Level 1. This means that we remain vigilant, but are free to mix and mingle and travel.
MOE has asked that I remind you that students on school buses do not need to wear masks (though they can if they wish), but everyone must wear a mask on all public transport.
We need to inform you all, (as we have our students) that we now have security cameras running at our school 24/7. This should act as a deterrent to vandalism and other crimes out of hours, but also to incidents of poor behaviour.
It is important to understand that only a few key senior staff have access to the recordings, and that we do not, in line with privacy laws, allow parents to view anything which may show any students other than their own child.
As always, our processes in dealing with anti-social behaviour are based on restorative and educative principles, and are aimed at prevention.
16th February 2021
As you are all no doubt aware, we have been placed back into Alert Level 2 and the Auckland region is in Level 3 Lock Down for the latest Coronavirus outbreak.
We are well practised at Level 2 and we want to reassure you that for us, school just carries on much as before, with a reinvigorated approach to hand sanitising etc. However, because we do want to be well prepared should we be moved into Level 3 at any point, students will be bringing home with them a letter that outlines the plan should the Alert level worsen. This will also be posted on the website and Facebook as well as emailed home.
Teachers checked for device and internet capabilities yesterday as well as need for hard copy resources moving ahead.
15th February 2021
Te Kauwhata College precautionary plan for a change in COVID-19 Levels
Currently we are at Alert Level 2. School remains open as normal. All students are expected to attend school. We are preparing should there be any change in Levels.
If we move to Alert Level 3 or 4, Years 11-13 will move to online learning.
Year’s 7-10 will also be online at Level 3 and 4. If we are in a Level 3 situation, children of essential workers will be able to come into school and access their online classes under a rostered teacher supervision system.
Should we go to Alert Level 3 and you are an essential worker family who will be sending your child to school, you will need to let the school know if they will be catching a bus. This communication will be vital so that we will be able to inform the bus company.
Teachers have asked students today, should we move to Alert Level 3 or 4 if they will require a loan device. If they indicate they will need a device. we will have the office open for families to come in and collect them between the hours of 9:00am – 3:00pm.
For those students who do not have internet access at home, paper/hard copies will be provided. Should we move to Alert Level 3 or 4, and you require paper/hard copies, you will need to phone the school to let us know so we can prepare the pack. Once the pack is ready, you will be able to come to the school office between the hours of 9:00am – 3:00pm to collect them.
This is a precautionary plan for our school should the alert levels change. We have put this together so that we are organised and prepared so that we can continue to deliver the best educational outcomes for your child.
15th February 2021
As you are all aware, the government has declared that the wider Auckland area moves to Level 3 and the rest of the country move to Level 2 from today. This means that for Te Kauwhata College, we return to the physical distancing, hand sanitising and desk wiping that we used so well in Level 2 last year. It also means no trips and visits, no activities offsite until further notice.
Location: 50-64 Waerenga Road, Te Kauwhata, New Zealand
Phone: (07) 826 3715
2022 Term Dates
Term 1: Thursday 3rd February - Thursday 14th April
Term 2: Monday 2nd May - Friday 8th July
Term 3: Monday 25th July - Friday 30th September
Term 4: Monday 17th October - Friday 9th December
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