South Otago High School News

2023 Newsletter

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21 July, 2023 Newsletter

Kia Ora Tatou
The new term has got underway and it has been good welcome back students to the third term. I hope that everyone had a good break and used the last long weekend to acknowledge the Matariki celebrations. Whilst the event happens in winter it is a time for reflection upon the past but also a time of hope and anticipation for what the future may hold. Looking at the future there is much to be excited about in terms of the changes for our community and the opportunities that are ahead. At South Otago High School we are working hard to ensure that our students are in the best possible position to take advantage of the opportunities that are available both locally, nationally and internationally.
Dunedin Hospital Rebuild
This week I was fortunate to be able to visit the Dunedin Hospital Rebuild project to hear about the opportunities that are available for students in the future. Whilst the current focus is on the construction it was interesting to visit the site and talk with the project managers and discuss their needs for staff and also the complexity of the work being undertaken. They also shared details of how they induct, train and develop employees.
The visit was also a chance to hear about the future needs for the hospital. Most of us, myself included, will think of doctors and nurses. There are however a range of other careers available such has maintenance and property workers, digital technicians, network engineers and trainers, medical engineers, to repair and maintain medical equipment etc.
In the future we hope that we may be able to host an event for our students which will include potential employers on the hospital programme and other significant infrastructure projects.
Matariki  Celebration
On Friday morning we hosted our first Matariki Breakfast and it was a pleasure to welcome whanau for this event. Next year we plan to hold the same event and I hope that we can include more people to the event. Our own Kapa Haka students performed and we had a presentation about the significance of Matariki.
As well as acknowledging the passing of loved ones during the last year it is an important time to look to the future. Our tamariki are who we need to invest in so that they may create change in our world in the future.
Industrial action
Whilst there is no scheduled future industrial action I would like to thank the community for their support with both the industrial action and also the paid union meetings at the end of last term. I accept that these events are not welcome and as I have stated previously, teachers want to work with students and to ensure that they are successful. I hope that the mediation will bring a meaningful resolution which is accepted and ensure that the teaching profession is a viable one for our brightest and best graduates in order to provide a viable career pathway.
Open Night and NCEA Option night
We have been forced to make some slight changes to our calendar with regards to these two events. The new dates are:
Open Night                         10 August,
NCEA Option Night          16 August
Parent teacher interviews
Due to the industrial action last term we have also needed to make changes to the opportunity for parents to meet with teachers and mentors. We will be holding parent teacher interviews on Thursday 3 August, all day. I encourage whanau to book appointments and meet with class teachers to hear progress and share how school can best support students.
With the start of the new term I want to encourage all students to settle and focus on their work. For Senior students, this is the last full term of the year. Term 4 will just be less than four weeks before students commence NCEA exams or take up study leave. This term is the time to finish internal assessments and start the preparation for externals.
For junior students it is a time to ensure that they are on track to achieving their goals and ensuring that they are able to receive their Graduation Certificate at the end of the year. For Year 10 students it is important that they keep on track with the work to achieve NCEA L1 literacy and numeracy. Students are expected to achieve 10 credits towards each of these requirements.
Whanau, please do talk to your tamariki to check that they know where they are up to and that they are on track to achieve their goals. Then have the same conversation with their teachers!
For all students we have high expectations for their conduct and effort with their learning.
Have a good weekend
Ka kite ano

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