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We are in celebration mode here at Springs/Waiorea with yet another clean sweep of all three divisions of the Maori stage at the annual Polyfest competition at Manukau Stadium.

The choreographed beauty of the performances, the power and beauty of the singing and the ferocity of the haka indeed left one tingling at the end of performances that were genuinely ‘next level’.  There was no doubt that the crowd (over 100,000 visitors over the 3 days of the competition) had witnessed an exceptional performance from our division 1 group – Nga Puna O Waiorea, from the ovation that they received.  That this was repeated with the division two and division three performances was evidence enough that there is something truly special going on here.

I especially recognise Tianara (General) Wihongi and his band of tutors (ex Waiorea students), as well as the Waiorea support crew behind them for this achievement.  We look forward to the Kapa Haka Nationals with excitement and anticipation!

We are excited here too, for the speed of construction of our new school as the three storey main block rise up before our eyes.  The steel core structure is coming together like a giant Meccano set.  Do take the time to pop in to see for yourself progress on this massive re-build.

Our Prime Minister and friend of the school, Jacinda Ardern will visit on May 11th to view progress for herself.  This will be an important visit to showcase our project nationally.  In breaking news, WSC/NPOW Board of Trustees member Rangimarie Hunia will have a one hour session with Barack Obama while he is here in NZ!

I want to make mention of a special group of our students who allowed me to compete with them at the Auckland Dragonboat championships at Lake Pupuke on Sunday.  You would not meet a finer group of young people anywhere.  They showed great team spirit, were collaborative, inclusive and competitive right to the end.  That they were happy to have their principal, on the back of their boat steering them to victory in the 500 metre bowl (Div 2) final is very special for me.  Tell me another school in NZ where that would happen!  Another example of the very special place that this is.

Best wishes to all students and their families for the up-coming Easter break – remember schools are closed on Tuesday as well.

Ivan Davis

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