Message from the Headmaster, Tuesday August 31 2021

Tomorrow we move to Alert Level 3, and I begin today by offering the very best wishes of the school to each of you as you adjust to the change. For some, the difference will not be significant, but for many of our community, Level 3 means that we are able to return to work, for at least part of the week.

For the school, Level 3 means that we will have a small number of students working on site, to enable essential workers the opportunity to return to work. In general terms, though, teaching and learning will remain online for the duration of this Alert level. At this stage, this is at least until the end of Tuesday next week.
This morning, our Senior Management Team met, and we can now confirm the calendar changes which have been necessitated by the change of NCEA dates announced by the Ministry. This revised calendar has now been uploaded on to the school Google calendar, so that you and your sons can check the changes when required.
The most significant change for our Senior students is the change to our Prize giving and Graduation ceremony. This will now be held on Thursday 11th November, at 10.00am. Senior students will be released for Study leave from Friday, 12th November, although there will be tutorials in the following week as part of the exam preparation process. We will provide more details of this closer to the time. There are other minor changes to dates, including a slight shift of the Year 9 and 10 exams, but this is the most significant.
The second decision made at the meeting this morning was confirmation that at this stage, our Senior Examination dates for later this term will remain the same. however, we will remain flexible in terms of providing at least 3 days of in school class time before we begin the exam timetable. Thus, if necessary, the exams which are due to start on the Wednesday of Week 8, may not be able to be held until Week 9 of this term. The timetable for these Senior exams will be shared with you this afternoon.
Our teaching staff has been working very hard, to maintain a sense of purpose and progress with classes, and thus it is at times, disappointing to hear continuing stories of a lack of engagement from some of our students. Please continue to support us by ensuring that your son attends Google Classroom sessions when timetabled, and checks his Google classroom regularly. We do, however, appreciate very much, the large majority of students who have been working very hard to maintain work through this time.
As we enter Week 3 of lockdown, it becomes even more important that every student connects. The time spent working now will make such a difference on his return to school. If there is anything we can do to support your son to achieve this, please do not hesitate to connect with his Tutor teacher, subject teacher or Dean. We are here to help!
I offer my thanks to our team of Senior prefects, who have arranged to place small video clips on our Social Media platforms. I hope that you take time to watch these over the days ahead.
Tomorrow we are having a screen free day for staff and students, so that everyone has time to review progress, establish routines for the week ahead, and ensure that work is up to date. It is also our first day of alert Level 3, so those students at school will be working on this programme while in class.
I will be in touch in the days ahead. In the meantime, take a moment to read our High Achiever when you receive it shortly. In the midst of all of the uncertainty and challenges of the times we still have so much to celebrate! We certainly have so much to feel proud of.
With my very best wishes for the days ahead.
Ngā mihi nui