Mercury Bay Area School Newsletter T4, W9

Term 4, Week 9, 13th December 2019
Three Year 8 students, Meila Quest, Indaria Bainbridge and Ava Sloane are putting together Christmas Hampers for some families in our community. The girls will not know the recipients of these hampers but are working together and really enjoying this venture. Sandi Lowe will be ensuring delivery of the hampers and would also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone that has contributed.

Diary Dates 

2020 Dates 
School Office Open - 20th January
Enrolment Appointments available from 21st January
Teacher Only Days 28th-30th January
School starts - 3rd February

Kia Ora – Greetings to you all

The Last Hurrah!

Yes, it is that time once again when our learning and education year comes to a close. 

When I wrote the final newsletter last year, I was able to take special note of what we had accomplished as a kura, staff and community – and it continues to be so. Our school and community continue to grow, and we are constantly seeking the proper resourcing for our community. This is a challenge. We have funding for four roll-growth classes we will be able to access in 2020, plus three other sets of funding for property development –

     •    $1.4m over 5 years for property development (classroom “do ups”,                              infrastructure development, Health and Safety matters, possibly some                        enhanced/new facilities) – but it won’t go that far!
     •    $200 000 available now – and into the next 12-24 months to enhance three                elements in our kura:
              o    Lighting
              o    Sound attenuation
              o    Heating
     •    $400 000 available in the next 6-24 months (recently announced by the Prime             Minister); “School Investment” funding – to improve our  kura (could be on                 Health and Safety matters; replacing our coal fired boiler?; environment                     enhancements?; covered walkways?, and many more possibilities – the                     funding will not go all that far!

So, from that perspective we have lots ahead of us to consider – but it is all going in the right direction. We still know we have significant work to do to “get to Yes” with the Ministry on the replacement of our aged classrooms. This is ongoing.

Financially, it has been a tough year for us as I have struggled to remain within the Operations Grant provision and the “over-staffing” this year has had a direct impact on our bottom line (our student: teacher ratios are much less than we are provided for by the Ministry).  We have consistently exceeded 1015 students during the year, and next year sees this number reaching toward 1050 – such is the growth within our community. At this stage we have sufficient classrooms and staffing.

As always though, we are all about learning, achievement, growth and development of our young people (and our staff).

Each part of our school is charging ahead and I am deeply appreciative of the effective leadership of our Senior Leadership team – Mr Smith (DP- Senior Years); Mrs Bloom (DP – Middle Years); Mrs McDougall (DP – Primary Years); Mrs Boswell (AP – Senior Years), Mr Davy (AP – Middle Years) and Ms Surtees (AP – Primary Years).  They do a fantastic job and have your children’s wellbeing and academic progress in their heart.  All our staff, teaching and support, are fully behind all they do, and I too appreciate all they do to ensure our young people achieve at the highest level possible and are well cared for within our kura.  Our Board of Trustees is hugely supportive of all we are aiming to achieve and provide great governance of our school.  As we know it is a team that makes things happen!

Class placements
At this phase of the year we have spent a considerable amount of time considering the placement of all of our students, Y1-10 in particular. We have received some feedback from parents/caregivers for us to consider. When we consider class placements, there are many considerations for us; peer group, learning needs of the students, behaviour/attitude, past experiences and learning - it is rather a complex matter.  I want to assure all our parents that we take a lot of time and care in placing students in classes.  Also, we need you to know that given the complexities we are working with, not all requests can be accommodated. If you have any concerns please contact me.

Staff leaving us this year
It is appropriate to acknowledge those who are leaving this year some who have a long association with our kura: Mr Mike Smith (DP – Senior Years); Mrs Linda Gould (Primary Years); Ms Annie Beatson (Primary Years): Mr Tony Nelson and Mrs Trish Nelson and Mr Graeme Stevenson (Middle and Senior Years). Collectively these folks have served our education system for over 200 years, half of which they have dedicated to Mercury Bay Area School. This is an outstanding contribution by each and all of them and we know that these kinds of connections build enduring relationships which in turn allows our young people to grow and develop in a safe, respectful learning environment. Also leaving us will be Mr Andy Henley, Ms Stephanie McEwan, Matua Brandon Amoamo, Mrs Wendy Kingsbury.  They have all made significant contributions to our kura – we thank them and wish them all the very best. Additionally, Ms Ailsa McLean, Ms Monique Taylor, Ms Laura Oram, and Mr Thomas Everth will each be on 12 months leave. During the year Mr Phil Morcom, Mr Joe Reece and Mr Darren Walker stepped down as long serving Trustees, and Ms Sandi Lowe is also completing her term as iwi-representative. These folks have given hours of their time to supporting our kura and I deeply acknowledge their contribution.

Achievement Reports
Achievement reports for Y1-10 have now been distributed – email and hard copy. If you have not received a copy of your child’s report, please contact the office.  All the information about stationery, uniform and start up for 2020 will be on our website shortly.  If you have any queries about your child’s achievement please do not hesitate to contact us early in the New Year.  I will be drafting a newsletter during the last week of January which will be distributed electronically on Wednesday 29 January, 2020.

It is always good for me to read the end of year student achievement reports as it gives a great guide to how they have each tracked during the year. It seems to me that achievement across our whole school is incredibly solid. We use the external analysis of achievements/accomplishments to look for patterns/trends etc but we are always mindful that it is achievement at the individual level is the key lens through which we should consider “success”, “progress”, “development”.  This is the one enduring measure of “success”.

We would encourage you all to discuss your child’s achievement report with them so that they are ready, in the start of 2020, to set their own achievement goals.

Seaside Carnival – Buffalo Beach Reserve – 8 January
A reminder that there will not be a Seaside Carnival in 2020. The Divezone kayak raffle continues and will be drawn on 25th January 2020 at the Aeroclub Open Day.

School Magazine – now available
Congratulations to Ms Taylor for the work she has put into this year’s “snapshot” of our very busy school. The magazine is now available for those who have purchased it.

Start up 2020 (key information below)
Information will be communicated in next year’s newsletter and published in the local newspaper mid/late January. If you have any queries about start up please do not hesitate to contact our office which will be open from 20 January, 2020.  We are really keen to ensure we have a seamless start to the year.

Dates for 2020 
The dates for start-up for 2020 are below:
School Office Open - 20th January
Enrolment Appointments available from 21st January
Teacher Only Days 28th-30th January
School starts - 3rd February

As always if, you have any queries or comments, concerns or complaints please do not hesitate to contact me.
I am extremely grateful of your ongoing support, encouragement of our school and I look forward to another bumper year in 2020.

Finally, all that remains for me in this newsletter is to wish you all a very restful break over the summer, and trust that you will enjoy your time with family, friends and our rather remarkable local environs; and I look forward to seeing you all again at the start of 2020.  All the best!

Kind regards,
Ka kite ano

John Wright
Primary Years Prizegiving
What a lovely prize giving for the Primary Years, it was filled with awards, music, singing and a wonderful tribute to a long serving staff member, Mrs Linda Gould.
Shadow Box Art
Shadow box art work by Jarryd Deklerk Year 10 with Ms Mahon

Jarryd created this shadow box art work in Year 10 art.
Trialling a differentiated approach to art this term.

The results are stunning!
Thanks to tech department for letting us use the wood.
Japanese Storyteller
Last week the Year 9 Japanese classes were lucky enough to receive a visit from Mr Ei'ichi Obana (Ei-chan for short), a traditional "kamishibai" storyteller. Kamishibai is a Japanese theatre in pictures (kami = paper, shibai = theatre), known since the 12th century and recognized by UNESCO as part of Japan's unique national cultural heritage. Ei-chan, who travels the world introducing kamishibai to audiences of all ages, treated us to three stories, "Baby Grandma", "The Carpenter and the Cat", and "The Wolf's Big Mistake". We were also treated to a number of dad-jokes in Japanese! 
The students were fascinated by the way Ei-chan performed the stories and were impressed by the fact that they could understand them, even though they were told entirely in Japanese.
Yr 9-10 Art
Year 9 THH artworks by art mentor group of students and Year 10 art with Ms Mahon.
Benji Byrne -Mind Altered - Year 10
Alex Litherland-Forest- Year 10
Brooke Louden-Freaky Faces - Year 10
Josie Fairweather, Emma Jones -Time running out-Year 9 THH
Luscha McMiken, Lily McEwen-Landscape, our past and future-Year 9 THH
Level One Art Folios
Year 11-Folios - Ms Mahon- Based on students own chosen theme and passions.
Ashley Toma - Cupid
Teague McMiken-Birds and the world of books
Maia Crighton - Gaming world
Isobel Mikkelsen - Horse and human connections
THH Trapping Group Award
The THH trapping group won the forest and bird environmental prize for their work to establish and maintain a predator control trapline along the estuarine foreshore of Robinson Road Reserve. Well done, what a great achievement.
Middle Years Prize Giving Music Performance
Middle Years rock group 'Point Blank' performing at the 2019 MY Prize Giving.
Whangamata Sports Exchange
Last week our year 8-10 students hosted Whangamata Area School for the annual Sports Exchange.  Codes included Volleyball, Touch & Softball.  Mercury Bay were the overall winners on the day.  Everyone enjoyed the fun and great camaraderie between the two sister area schools.
Beach Fun for Learning Support
Sally Mills - Javelin Competition
Sally Mills competed at the New Zealand Secondary School Championships for Javelin in Wellington on the weekend.  Windy Wellington lived up to its name and presented some challenges, however Sally put that behind her and finished in 4th place with a throw of 30.19m.  Sally did extremely well in her first year of competing in the Javelin event and to finish 4th in a field of 28 and being possibly the youngest, this young lady is determined to train hard and take the challenge again in 2020.  A rising star who we are all extremely proud of and we look forward to sharing her journey.
Sally would like to thank Mr Henley for the trainings given and the extra competitions that he directed Sally to.
Thank you!
Thank you to Andy & Leanne McLeod from Mercury Bay Garden Centre for the use of your lovely plants for prizegiving.
Beginner Saxophone, Clarinet and Flute Lessons for 2020 available
There are places available in the MBAS Specialist Music Lesson programme from the beginning of next year.

Enrolments are open now:


Flute and Clarinet
Primary Stationery Packs for 2020
Order Here
Volunteers wanted
We are looking for volunteers to help sell Dive Zone Raffle tickets for a couple of hours a shift leading up to Christmas. If you think you could help for a shift or two, please register your interest with Kat or Linda at the school office. Or email 

Community Notices

Childrens Ear Clinic
The Childrens Ear Clinic will be in Whitianga on  December 17th 2019.   
Time:  8-12:30pm
Located in the Whitianga Town Centre.
Reliable Worker Wanted
I am looking for a reliable worker wanting to work from the 9th December through to the 3rd February (if good may even carry on, on a part time basis if they choose)

They will be picked up from the driver coming from Hamilton and will go around different businesses delivering fresh produce. This person will need to start around 6.30- 7am and finishing anywhere between 2-3pm.

This role is Monday through to Saturday, closed on Sunday’s and X-mas day.

Must be fit and reliable.

Ideally 17 years+ but open to an older 16 year old.

Please contact
(07) 260 4044 | 022 357 6759 
Hamilton & Tauranga  
MBAS-OELC Partnership Opportunity
There is a fantastic opportunity for MBAS students to attend the Ontario Educational Leadership Centre (OELC) June/July 2020.
This year they are adding a global perspective to their program which holds personal growth and well-being at the center. To this end, they are adding a Youth Climate Change Summit,  to engage youth leaders from a variety of countries, to discuss and make plans as stewards of the environment. 
For more information contact Ron Morgan on
Meningococcal ACWY vaccination, students heading to boarding situations
Mercury Bay Medical Centre wishes to advise its patients that we have just been informed that as of  1st  December 2019, meningococcal ACWY vaccination will be funded for individuals aged 13-25 years in their first year of living in a boarding school hostel, tertiary education hall of residence or military barracks. There will also be a catch up programme from 1 December 2019 to 30 November 2020 for those aged 13-2 5years who are already in one of these close living situations.

 If you think your child is eligible or would like further information about this vaccination please do not hesitate to call one of nursing team at Mercury Bay Medical Centre on 07 8665911.

Adele Pudney
Clinical Lead Nurse/Director
Mercury Bay Medical Centre
07 8665911
Opportunity for Mercury Bay Area School Students
Holiday Dance Workshops
Celeste Dance is offering Dance Holiday Workshops in January, 2020, dates TBA yet, times 9.30 am - 4.30 pm approx, 2 days; Performance Level (Jazz, with fun Musical Theatre and Lyrical), Contemporary, Hip Hop. Using DanceNZmade syllabi, Adult classes avail. Classes local, depending on numbers.

Ph 021 0841 0697,
Copyright © 2020 Mercury Bay Area School, All rights reserved.

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