Newsletter No. 1, February 13, 2009
The Human Papillomavirus (HPV) - Cervical Cancer – Vaccine
The school has agreed to provide the opportunity for the Ministry of Health HPV team to inform senior students about the cervical cancer vaccination programme and to use the school health centre to administer the vaccinations. Note that students may choose to access the programme through their own doctor.
Accordingly, next Tuesday, 17/2/09, the HPV vaccine team will meet with all Year 12 and 13 female students in order to explain the vaccination programme and distribute consent forms.
While we acknowledge that students aged 16 or over are able to give their own consent, we would like to encourage parents to have an informed discussion of the programme with their daughters.
The schedule for the vaccination programme is as follows:
- First vaccine: 31/3/09 ( Catch-up day for students who miss the vaccine through absence: 7/4/09
- Second vaccine: 26/5/09 ( Catch-up on 3/6/09 )
- Third vaccine: 1/9/09 ( Catch-up on 8/9/09 )
Phone 0800 466 863 ( 0800 IMMUNE )
HPV Cervical Cancer Vaccine – www.cervicalcancervaccine.govt.nz
Immunisation Advisory Centre – www.immune.org.nz
Medsafe, for information on the safety of the vaccination – www.medsafe.govt.nz
Ministry of Health’s immunisation page – www.moh.govt.nz/immunisation
Swimming Sports, Thursday, 19 February
The annual school swimming sports will take place next Thursday at West Wave in Henderson. All Year 9 students will take part; Years 10-13 students choose to participate or not.
All students are required to take part in at least two events. There will be a combination of competitive and fun events. Students who are not strong swimmers will be well catered for.
Students will be selected to represent the school at the West/Central zone championships on Wednesday, 25 February.
New Student Services Centre: Official Opening
Students and staff are currently enjoying use of the impressive new facilities for the school health centre, counselling and careers services. The official opening of the new building has been planned for Friday, 6 March, 10.00 – 11.30am.
New Families’ BBQ, Tuesday, 3 March, 6pm
Please read the Parent Action Group item below for further information.
It was with great excitement that the student leaders for 2009 arrived on the Marae on the afternoon of Friday the 30th of January. There was so much to do. We needed to have fun, sort permission slips, get to know each other, have fun, talk about expectations and responsibilities, and, oh yes, have fun!
The group bonded straight away, taking every opportunity to get to know each other. Of course being tied together with pieces of rope and popping balloons between a range of different body parts helped significantly.
On Saturday morning we got off to an early start with a 7am yoga lesson with Ms Patel. This was followed by one of Maggie’s amazing breakfasts and then we were off to the High Ropes course at Unitec. This turned out to be one of the most amazing experiences of my entire teaching career. Watching these students challenge their own perceptions, pushing themselves, some to the extreme, was not just rewarding but inspiring. They learned to rely on each other, trust each other and take full responsibility for their actions. They did an amazing job!
Saturday night, even though we were all exhausted, was spent skipping and planning for the year ahead. Identifying possible challenges, brainstorming and discussing a range of solutions and responses proved to be time well spent.
Arriving at Sunday morning, I found a group of absolutely exhausted leaders scattered all over the Marae. They were however prepared to humour me with a game of bacon and eggs as well as a range of other team building activities. We concluded the day reflecting on ourselves, our peers and our goals for the year ahead.
I have been greatly impressed by this group of students. I look forward with great excitement to what they are able to bring to our school community in 2009.
STUDENT LEADERS 2009
Te Toki Tepaki,
News from the Mathematics Department
It is with a great sense of accomplishment and pride that we look back at 2008. It was a very successful year for the department in terms of examination results and we look forward to analysing these in greater detail. It was also an exceptional year in terms of students using their mathematics skills to support their community. Maths Week saw the department raise $2000 for child cancer. The year 9 Gifted and Talented students did us proud, producing quality work which they presented with confidence, while Maths Uncensored was yet again very well received by all. We entered a range of different competitions and achieved outstanding results in the University of New South Wales Educational Assessment, achieving 11 distinction and 2 higher distinction awards.
It is with great excitement that we welcome Logan Coleman and Jared Hockly to our team. Logan will be teaching both Mathematics and Science while Jared will be taking over the role of assistant HOD from Simon Henley, alongside Bryony West. Simon has been a great asset to our team in 2008 and we have benefited greatly from his skills and experience. We do however understand his decision to step down from the role and are grateful to still have the benefit of his expertise within the department.
Please note that all Mathematics students will need a calculator in order to successfully complete their studies this year. Junior students will need a scientific calculator, which may be purchased from the front office. Senior students, depending on their course of study, will need either a scientific or a graphics calculator. Classroom teachers will notify students of the requirement for their course over the first few days of returning to timetabled classes.
Students in the department will yet again have the opportunity to partake in a range of different extension activities such as Mathematics Competitions, Gifted and Talented Groups, Maths Publication and much more. As the year progresses, relevant information will be passed on to students via the daily bulletin and newsletters as well as their classroom teachers. Parents and caregivers are also reminded of the holiday workshops for senior achievement standards students which are scheduled for the second week of the term 2 and term 3 holiday periods. Students find these hugely beneficial as they provide a fantastic opportunity for structured and supported revision. Attendance is highly recommended.
We look forward to yet another fantastic year!
Geography Department News
In 2009, we welcome Ivan Davis into the Department, teaching a Year 11 class.
As usual, we have planned a number of fieldtrips to encourage students to enjoy learning about their environment and to promote successful, hands on learning.
Below are the dates for our 2009 fieldtrips:
Year 11 have a compulsory ½ day trip to the Volcanoes Exhibition at the Museum on 25th February and a one day trip to Waihi to the gold mine on 15th June. The total cost for these two trips will be approximately $45 for transport.
Our overseas trip in August is still uncertain and may be replaced by a trip to Ruapehu with the Year 12 students in April.
Year 12 have a 3 day trip to Tongariro National Park to complete the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, from 2-4 April costing about $300, including everything, and a compulsory 1 day trip to carry out their research in the Auckland urban area on the 26 May, costing approximately $20 for transport. Also, if the Year 11 optional overseas trip takes place, Year 12 students are invited to attend.
Year 13 have a compulsory 1 day trip to Omaha on 25th March, costing approximately $30 for transport, and we will run a day trip to Waitomo, date to be arranged, where the cost will depend on the number of activities the students choose to do and whether we decide to stay overnight or not, but will be approximately $125.
We look forward to an exciting and successful year.
Welcome To The Learning Centre
We are located downstairs in B Block, and are open all day from Monday to Friday and after-school on Mondays and Wednesdays. (3.15 – 4.30 p.m.)
Any student may come and refer themselves to us for help for any learning need, (small or large), and we will endeavour to get them the help they need. The students who gain the most from working with us are those who come early, (as soon as a problem arises), and those who genuinely want to learn. So don’t wait until a teacher or a Dean directs you to us. Make the choice to take charge of your own learning. Call in and book a time to discuss your learning need.
Peer Assisted Learning
We will very soon begin training year 13 students as Peer Readers/Mentors for 2009. These students will go on to work with and provide support for year 9 and 10 students. Each student will receive a training certificate at the end of the 8 training sessions and a further certificate at the end of 2009 in recognition of the work they have done. We already have an initial list of volunteers, but are still keen to hear from other year 13 students who would be willing to give up the equivalent of one study period per week, for most of the year. This is a superb opportunity to show leadership and give back to the school. If you are interested, please call in to the Learning Centre at any time and add your name to the list.
The Learning Centre is running a Homework Centre and Study Support Sessions, in conjunction with the Atea and Moana Deans, again this year. Students who attended these sessions last year found them very helpful.
If you are a student who has difficulty getting your homework done at home, or could do with some help, then you should be attending one or both of our homework centres.
If you are a senior student and you would like to get help with essay writing, research, breaking big assignments down into manageable pieces, time management, study skills and exam techniques, please either: come to the after-school sessions on Mondays and Wednesdays, or come and book a time with Helen or Trina.
The year has started well in the English Department. We are happy to welcome four new staff members: Rita Stone who is teaching English and Drama, Melanie Webber, who is teaching English and Media, Trina Sellers, who is teaching two classes and also continuing her excellent work in the Learning Centre, and Jasmine Dunn, who is teaching English in the Rumaki.
Thank you to parents for support in returning text books from last year. There are, however, a lot of English Department books still to come in. Could I ask parents to check if there are any school texts lying around the house, and to get them back to the school as soon as possible? They can be handed in to Beth at the front office or given to any English teacher. Thank you for your support with this.
Debating has always been very strong at WSC and we would like to ensure that this continues. The competition gets under way again soon, and interested students should watch the notices for news of the first meeting. We always have a lot of girls who are keen to participate but would welcome more boys becoming involved. Coaching is given so no prior experience is necessary, just a willingness to make a fortnightly commitment to a team.
Writers’ Club will also begin in the next few weeks. Students will be informed via the notices of the time and venue for the first meeting. Writing is a particular focus of the department this year and there will be a writing competition later in the year which will run in conjunction with the Pt. Chev. library. There will be more details about this in a later newsletter.
Our library opens next week for borrowing and Year 9 students will be going for an orientation visit with their English teacher very soon. There will be timetabled periods for Sustained Silent Reading every week in English periods, because we know the importance of practising that vital skill. If parents can encourage and model reading at home, that would be wonderful.
I am looking for a highly-organised and resourceful person to work in the English resource room for 5 hours a week, doing book-covering, photo-copying and data-entry, managing text-issues, and other computer-related tasks. If you are a systems person with good computer skills and a sense of humour, and would like to work with an enthusiastic group of people, please email me to discuss pay and conditions!
Travellers’ Programme: Year 9 Students
Western Springs College is conscious of the important changes and transitions that teenagers cope with during their schooling. The change from Year 8 to Year 9 is one of the most important. It generally takes about 8 months for most students to make that change.
Since 2002 the school has participated in a successful Ministry of Health project to make transitions easier for Year 9 students, called ‘TRAVELLERS’. The aim is to help us to best support our Year 9 students. They are given a short survey in the first term. The questionnaire asks them general questions about such things as changes of schools and challenging situations they may have faced. The Skylight Foundation in Wellington collates the surveys and a number of students are then invited to be a part of a small group ‘Travellers’ programme.
WSC was one of the pilot schools for this programme; it has now grown to include approximately half of the state high schools in New Zealand. It is also in use in Denmark and Australia.
The questionnaire will be filled in over the next month. If you do not want your child to complete the questionnaire, or you have questions, then please contact Graham Woolford (direct dial: 815 6748) or Sue Poupouare (815 6730 ext 742).
Project K: Year 10 Students
The conveners for Project K came into the school on Tuesday 10th February. They gave a presentation to the Year 10 students on this exciting programme. This is the second year that we have been involved with Project K. In 2008 it was well received by the students and families involved. Year 10 students receive a letter for their families, explaining more fully the programme and the survey that is undertaken. If you do not want your child to complete the survey, please contact Project K, as per the instructions in the letter.
Technology Department News
The Technology Department is bigger and better this year with the appointment of a permanent staff member to help facilitate all the exciting things we have planned for 2009. Keep an eye out for Cassandra Chadwick who joins Jill Hewitt (Food Technology) Barbara Joseph (Fabric Technology), Matt Clayton (Graphics) and Neil (Hard Materials).
We are all refreshed and rearing to introduce our new Year 9 students to the vibrant and diverse areas encompassed within Technology. We are also looking forward to continuing work and learning with our students who in 2008 achieved such excellent results! Well done.
Keep on eye on the school calendar for Technology week coming in Week 7 of Term 2. There will be lots of fun activities and some cool prizes to be won. We will keep you posted……
In the Fabric Technology Department we will be looking at Sustainability and Up-Cycling in the fashion industry and how this can apply to our day to day lives. Look for the displays at the back of the Fabric Room for more info. Also, check the school website for relevant resources and web addresses to find out more.
In the Food Technology Department we are also looking at environmental issues with the introduction of composting for all the organic scraps generated through our cooking classes. Jill’s classes will also be doing some planting of fast growing leafy plants like rocket and basil. The fresh, organic produce will then be used in class. This project is the seed of an idea to eventually have our very own Western Springs College community garden. So if there are any interested/skilled parents out there, please contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Welcome to New International Students
Our host families have been helping us welcome and accommodate 45 international students in this hot but beautiful summer. Most of the students have come or returned from countries in cold winter, and all of them have settled by now. Our international students came from Germany, Brazil, Japan, China, Korea, Taiwan, America, and Thailand. I would like to welcome all international students to join the 2009 WSC community. Many thanks to our host families for your great support!
I look forward to seeing you all, new students and host families, at the New Families’ BBQ evening on Tuesday 3rd of March from 6-8pm.
April 09 China Trip update
A number of families have yet to pay the $900 instalment which was due on 04/02/09. Please arrange this as soon as possible. The last instalment of $840 is due on 06/03/09. If your son or daughter’s passport needs to be updated, you need to attend to this now.
Our next meeting will be on 25th of February, Wednesday at 7pm in the school library. See you then.
Homestay Families Wanted
We are recruiting host families all through the year. If your family is interested in hosting an international student, please contact Ms Kylie Herriott by email: email@example.com
Director of International Students
Parent Action Group News
This Saturday night, 14th February, we’ll be trialling a carparking fundraiser on the field behind TAPAC. Don McGlashan is playing at the zoo as part of their Zoo Music Programme, and we’re sure there’ll be a huge turnout so we’re charging $5 per vehicle to park on the school field. Entry will be through the gates to the left of TAPAC so head that way if you’re planning to go. We’ll cover the other Zoo music events if this trial is successful.
New Parents BBQ – Tuesday 3 March. This is a fine Springs tradition where the old parents welcome the new parents with some great home-cooked salads, while the school provides the sausages. If you appreciated the gesture when your kids first started at Springs, now’s your chance to pay it forward and drop in a salad to the staffroom by 6pm on the 3rd. We’re catering for over 200 people so we need plenty!
Family picnic - Thursday 12 March. This is a self-catering event open to all Springs families. Bring a rug and some dinner and catch up with some of the people you say a hurried hello to when you pass in the street. PAG will provide a bbq for you to cook on, and there’ll be music and some old-fashioned picnic games. So come along to the field behind TAPAC from 5pm onwards – you’ll be very welcome.
LESS THAN A WEEK TO GO, before our Adult Community Education classes start up again at Western Springs College. The following classes still have vacancies, so if you are interested, now's the time to book!
|Basic Maths for Adults
Boxing Fitness for Men
Pacific Island Dance – Cook Island
Pacific Island Dance – Samoan
Drawing: Pencil, Chalk & Charcoal
Learner Licence (Theory)
Pottery Using a Wheel
Self Defence For Men and Women
Sharemarket - An Intro
Jobs: Interview Skills
|Jobs: CVs &Covering Letters
Landscape Painting in Oils
Starting Up Your Own Business
Your Natural Pharmacy Kit for Home
Full information is on our website
Herne Bay Ponsonby Rackets Club - Gala Open Day 15 February –
In conjunction with NZ Tennis Open Day, Herne Bay Ponsonby Rackets Club (Tennis*Squash*Gym) is celebrating the opening of its new tennis courts with a fun-filled family gala on Sunday 15 February from 1-7pm. Club Patron, Susan Devoy will be opening the new courts. There will be games, lolly scramble & bouncy castle, opportunities for free squash & tennis coaching and gym assessments, jazz band, and maybe the odd local celebrity. Come along, have fun, play some sport and meet some new people. 10 Westend Road, Herne Bay. Ph 376 0681 - www.hernebayrackets.co.nz
Enrolments for the 2009 soccer season are open at Western Springs Soccer Club. The club welcomes all players from 6yrs to 17yrs. Practices are held at Seddon Fields, Meola Road and Saturday matches are scheduled from 4th April. Enrolments may be made on line at www.wsafc.org.nz. Any enquiries should be addressed to the relevant coordinators as advised on the above website or to Kim Roberts who can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phoning 0800 838 256 or 027 7171827.