South Otago High School News

2024 Newsletter

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15 March 2024 Newsletter

Kia Ora Tatou
This week has been very hectic with conference day and evening. Thank you to all the whanau that made bookings and attended the conferences. I trust that you found it helpful to meet the mentor and hear what your tamariki/child aims to achieve during the course of the year. Going forward mentors will be checking in with students regularly to make sure that they are on track to be successful.
Touch Awards
At the Otago Touch Awards on Wednesday 13 March, a number of our students received acknowledgements for their achievements. This is a great success for our students a number of whom are travelling to the South Island Championships today and I am sure that there will be a report in next week’s newsletter. Our award recipients were:
Aniva Gouman – Most Valuable Player of U16 girl’s invitational 
Summah Gouman - Most Valuable Player of U14 girls
Blake Hyslop - Most Dependable U16 boys
Emmy Marshall - Best attacker U16 girls
Sydney Marshall - recognized for making NZ U16 girls
Year 11 Geography Field trip
Last weekend and the start of this week a large group of year 11 students travelled to Mount Cook for a field trip. This was a slight change to previous years with this new destination. I have heard really positive reports from the trip and students were really engaged in the learning that took place during the field trip. The staff have reported back how supportive and enthusiastic the students were during the time that they were away. The provision of these opportunities for students only happens because of the good will of teacher who plan, prepare and give up their time without compensation. South Otago High School is so fortunate to have such dedicated teachers!
Cell phones, away for the day
On Tuesday I spent part of the whole school assembly talking about the changes to the cell phone expectations. As I have been about the school during the transition time, I have not seen any students breaching the new expectations which has been great.
This week I have also managed to issue exemption cards to students where whanau have requested an exemption, and it has been approved. Whanau can continue to request an exemption using the link below:

Click here

If an exemption is declined whanau can appeal by writing a letter to the Board of Trustees.
During the assembly I did show students the security pouches whilst describing the consequences. I have neglected to make clear that the pouches are expected to be returned each day in good condition and a charge will be raised for damaged pouches. If students wish to use these for secure storage and to limit their own temptation to use their cell phone, we will set up a system that they can be loaned out to interested students.
This will all be communicated to students in next Tuesday’s assembly.


The end of term is fast approaching with just four weeks until the holiday. We know that some students are tiring from the long term, and we do have some instances where individuals are not attaining our expectations. Support from home is essential. This can be ensuring that your child gets adequate rest/sleep, checking in with them about their day or reinforcing the school values of respect, excellence and perseverance. To look forward I would like to remind whanau that we do have two short weeks with:

Monday 25 March, school closed, Otago Anniversary Day
Friday 29 March, school closed, Good Friday
Monday 1 April, school closed, Easter Monday
Tuesday 2 April, school closed, Easter Tuesday
Have a great weekend.
Ka kite ano

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