South Otago High School News

2023 Newsletter

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23 June, 2023 Newsletter

Kia Ora Tatou
This week the senior students have been abuzz as they finalise their preparations for the Senior Night of the Ball (SNOB). Yesterday I met with all the students who will be attending and congratulated them on their work to prepare for the event and also to acknowledge those students who had raised their attendance and cleared accounts in order for the school to be able to sell tickets for the night.
We invite the community to come along and watch the entry tonight. Cars will be arriving from 7pm and all students are expected to be inside by 7:45pm. Typically there are some very impressive rides organised for students as they arrive for the evening event.
As usual we have high expectations for students and our usual school expectations stand for all who attend.
Clutha District Youth Spirit Awards
Earlier this week Charlotte Bennington and Ryan Williams received Youth Spirit - High Calibre Awards in recognition of outstanding service to the Clutha District. This is a significant achievement for two of our school leaders. Well done to both Charlotte and Ryan and congratulations on your award.
Leadership Pathways Breakfast
This week I was invited to speak to business leaders in Dunedin to talk about the partnerships that South Otago High School has with local business and the work we do to support students into the employment and training. We were the only school asked to speak. Most of the Dunedin and surrounding schools were in attendance.
Whilst my talk focussed on the partnership between Otago Polytechnic (Te Pukanga), the community, Big River Homes and South Otago High School, this was representative of a number of links that we have with our community. Following my talk a number of business leaders approached and wanted to discuss how they could link with our students.
In the days following I have reflected upon the event and some thoughts that have emerged:

  • We may be out of a main urban centre but South Otago High School is leading the way in developing partnerships with business and training providers.
  • Despite the barrier of distance we are ahead of the field in what we are achieving in providing varied pathways for our students to employment, apprenticeships and tertiary study.

This does not happen by accident. At South Otago High School there is an amazing team that makes this happen. The teachers here actively look for these opportunities and work hard to develop these relationships.
Further feedback
I had the opportunity to speak to one of the trainers from Dunedin Hospital who said that last week they had had a visit from a group of South Otago High School students to look at careers in the health industry. They reported that our students were great and really engaged with the visit and they hope to see some of them consider a career in health in the future
Womens Soccer World Cup
With this event starting very soon, two of our students, Mabel Ferguson and Poppy Dobson along with a number of students from the primary schools were invited to see the unveiling of the trophy in Dunedin earlier this week. This is a great opportunity and thanks to Mr Beeby for organising this for our students.
Otago Development Womens Rugby Team
Congratulations to Aimee Johnson who has been selected for the Otago Development Womens Rugby Team. We look forward to seeing Aimee’s progress as yet another student is selected to represent our region. Well done Aimee!
Industrial action
Whilst this week has been a swift change with the cessation of industrial action we hope that this will bring a lasting end to negotiations. The next stage will be to enter into arbitration which we hope will provide an agreeable resolution to the claims by PPTA. To be clear this process has been going on for over a year with the last teachers contract expiring on 30 June 2022. A satisfactory resolution is long overdue so that the profession may attract graduates into the profession so that your child has a high quality teacher in front of them to help them learn and grow.
Paid Union Meeting
Last Wednesday a letter was sent home advising that there is to be a paid union meeting on Tuesday 27 June. The school will be open for instruction in the morning and students are expected to attend their classes. The following buses will be departing at 12:35:

  • Clinton/ Taumata
  • Wangaloa
  • Tuapeka Mouth
  • Clydevale

All others will depart at the usual time of 3:10

If parents would like students to be supervised they should inform the school office before Tuesday morning.
School production
Next Wednesday and Thursday the students will be performing the ‘Footrot Flats’ play in the school hall. Practices and rehearsals have been going on for some time and I am looking forward to attending. The show is on for just two nights, Wednesday and Thursday. I hope you will come and join us for what I am sure will be a fun night.
Next week is the final week of the term. In the last week we have had a number of students who have been off school unwell and there is a nasty bug doing the rounds at the moment. We have reports of students with flu symptoms and also vomiting. As we approach the last week of the term please be vigilant as no one wants to be unwell during the holiday. Please do test for covid and follow the isolation requirements to keep everyone as safe as possible.
Have a good weekend
Ka kite ano

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