By Dave Thorp | Posted: Monday March 8, 2021
Kia ora te whanāu
Welcome to 2021 everyone. Our beginning to the year has had some real highs, but Covid-19 has ensured that school life has been negatively affected in some small ways and some large ways. We haven’t been able to come together in assemblies and many events have been postponed. Hopefully, all this is behind us now, but if it isn’t, we know what to do and we know we can cope.
Our 2020 NCEA results were very pleasing. We saw impressive rises in achievement in NCEA Levels 1 & 2, with students maintaining achievement in Level 3 and dropping slightly in University Entrance. Given the difficulties of the lockdown, these results are a testament to the work put in by staff and students to catch up. Ka pai guys - you should feel very proud!!
Teaching and learning in 2021 is well underway, with many students preparing for assessment work. I feel that last year moved us forward in terms of the use of digital tools and most courses now consist of a blend of in-class and online learning. The teachers are keen to carry on 2020’s theme of completion. To see a task through to its completion has to be the norm or otherwise it becomes all too easy for boys to ‘flag’ things they don’t like.
Despite hopping in and out of Alert Level 2, we managed to get through our two, key summer events, the Swimming and Athletics sports days. They were great occasions with keen competition, some outstanding performances and, of course, lots of fun. The staff/prefects relays were hotly contested on both days, with the staff taking out the swimming and the prefects prevailing in Athletics. Most of all, it was great to see so many of our boys giving it their all for their houses and enjoying competition and camaraderie.
All of our summer sports teams are enjoying success this year. Please spare a thought for our rowers who had their South Island Secondary Schools Championships postponed last weekend. Many of them missed out on racing at the New Zealand Secondary Schools Championships last year, due to Covid-19, and it would be a tragedy if that happened again. They are a superb group of athletes with high expectations of national success. We all have our fingers crossed that the NZ Champs will take place as planned at Lake Karapiro from 22 - 27 March. Good luck!
It’s wonderful to see our new Year 9 students settling in. The John Scott Lodge camps are underway and Year 9 boys are coming back with stories about mud rugby, tramping in the hills and swimming in cold, cold water. They are building new relationships and creating their own legends. Welcome aboard boys!
Finally, please spread the news of our Open Day on Sunday 14 March, 1 - 3pm. It’s our best opportunity to show people who we are and what we stand for. I’m looking forward to seeing you all there. It’s always a great day!