Kia ora whanau
Tēnā koutou kātoa ngā whānau o te kura
As Week 10 draws to a close, it is an opportunity to reflect on another very productive and successful term for Aquinas College.
Last week senior students were involved in assessments, primarily trial assessments related to NCEA externals that they will be sitting beginning Thursday 7th November. With only 14 school days remaining once seniors return to school in Term 4, it is essential your child(ren) continue their preparations for these examinations accordingly. Junior students will have exams in Week 4 of the term that will measure progress and attainment throughout the year. Again, it is important for our junior students to familiarise themselves with the material that has been covered in class to maximise their opportunities to realise their academic potential.
We have had many opportunities to celebrate our Special Character this term and particularly through significant events at the back end of the term. I had the privilege to attend the Year 12 Retreat last week. As is detailed in this newsletter, the retreat centred on Servant Leadership and Love. I was delighted to deliver a workshop on leadership in our context. Our students were very engaged throughout the retreat and I am excited about their potential as senior leaders of our College in 2020. On Wednesday 25th September we farewelled Father Mark. This was an especially moving occasion where we celebrated, acknowledged and said goodbye to our Parish Priest. What may not be known to members of our community is the fact that Father Mark was also the Founding Director of Religious Studies at the College. We will miss his kindness, we will miss his empathy and we will miss his understanding of the lives of young Catholics developing in their faith journeys. Father Mark’s ability to bring the scriptures alive in a way that is meaningful and contextualized for our young people was one of his greatest gifts! On Friday 27th September we will celebrate our end of term liturgy, which will be a remembrance liturgy, marking the five-year anniversary of the passing of our founding Principal, Mr Brendan Schollum. At the conclusion of this liturgy we will unveil and bless a new memorial plaque for Mr Schollum.
Winter Sports Tournament week was very successful once again this year. We were represented by eight teams across football, hockey, basketball and netball. All of our sports teams represented the College with distinction both on and off the field at their respective tournaments. We also enjoyed very strong representation over AIMS week with over 120 students representing the College in individual and team events. Once again, our junior students made us very proud. Of particular note were the seven medals attained by our students! Special congratulations to Holly van den Borst (Gold medal, Rhythmic Gymnastics), Kieran Death (Gold medal, Rock Climbing), Ashton Matuku (Silver medal on AWD Table Tennis), Eliana Hulsebosch (Silver medal, Mountain Biking), Ella Hill (Silver medal, Squash) and Isla Wills (Silver medal, Open Trampoline).
I had the pleasure of supporting a number of teams over the two weeks and was very proud of all the students I watched representing the College. The results in the following pages detail the performance and success of the various teams in these tournaments.
Also on the sporting front, we celebrate and congratulate the following students for their recent national selection, national or international honours:
We also recognise the continued success of our students in the Arts and Culture in the following pages and I take the opportunity to particularly congratulate Sera Won who was awarded Highly Commended in the prestigious Wallace Arts Awards. These Awards are the longest surviving and largest annual art awards of their kind in New Zealand. On Tuesday 24th September, our four Houses competed in the inaugural Haka and Waiata competition. This was an inspiring day where each House performed Mō Maria, the College Haka and another Waiata of their choice. While each house excelled in their performances, there could only be one winner – congratulations to Browne House! I encourage you to get on our Facebook page and watch their performances.
Following on from the introduction of Bring Your Own Device initiatives for Y11-13 in 2019, I would like to indicate that the College intends to promote BYOD for Y9-13 from 2020. We have a professional learning programme in place for teaching staff around this and are excited by the opportunities that access to digital learning can provide for our students. We will continue to provide access to devices for students but encourage families to invest in this area. Recommended specifications for devices can be found on our website.
Thank you to those of you who have contributed to the community consultation survey. While there was an increase in responses following my most recent prompt, the total response rate is still only representative of 15% of our community. I will leave this survey open until the end of the holidays in the hope that those 85% who haven’t responded will do so. Follow this link to access the survey.
Our final prizegiving is on Tuesday 10th December. Aquinas College has a proud history of strong achievement across a number of areas, and 2019 is no different. If any businesses in our community would like to sponsor a prize on this day, please make contact with Kurt Kennedy (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Students are expected to be in the correct College summer uniform from Monday 14th October, Term 4. You can view the summer uniform on our website.
Term Four Staff Only Day
As published in the College calendar, there is a Staff Only Day planned for Monday 11th November. I share this with you to allow families to make plans as the College will be closed for instruction on this day.
This newsletter is full of the rich and varied ways in which our students are achieving and contributing to our College. Our philosophy of holistic education is celebrated in their Special Character, cultural, performing arts and sporting achievements, together with a continued emphasis on every student working to their academic potential. I wish you all a safe and relaxing term break and I look forward to another successful school term starting on Monday 14th October, 2019.
May God’s Blessings be upon us all.
Year 12 Retreat
The Year 12 Retreat this year focused on the theme of ‘Servant Leadership’ and was based on the piece of scripture from Mark 10:45. Students participated in sessions to establish the key aspects of servant leadership and to inwardly reflect on what this means for them as they move into Year 13. Sam Brebner, spoke to students about what makes a great leader and shared the video clip of Jake Bailey, who was the Head Boy of Christchurch Boys. Mr Dalton also asked the students to consider what makes a good leader and to personally evaluate which leadership attributes they bring to Aquinas College Community. Key discussions were around humility, influence instead of authority and collaboration. “Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less.” C.S. Lewis
Students also participated in Adoration and Reconciliation as they reflected on the Parable of the Lost Sheep and our current Religious Education unit ‘Created for Love’. They were asked to call to mind their relationships and to evaluate how they were willing the good of others. We were grateful for Father Philip and Father Rico joining us to hear confessions. The retreat concluded with a Mass on Friday, which was celebrated by Father Prakash.
During the yearly Service Day at Aquinas College, a group of students were tasked with tidying up and weeding the schools’ greenhouse and garden. A discussion arose about the wonderful resource these facilities are and how they could be used in a more beneficial way for the community. After some further thought and debate, it was decided that we would grow vegetables from seed and donate them to a local charity. Under the Stars, a charity which provides food to the homeless, was chosen to receive the vegetables.
It is rewarding, indeed, for Aquinas students to be able to, not only see the fruits of their labour, but also to truly reflect the teachings of Jesus through service. Our intention is to continue to integrate this initiative into the Year 10 Science program which involves plant propagation and has cross curricular links to the Year 10 Religious Education program.
By Mrs Monique Harris, Leader of Learning Religious Education
There has been so much positive conversation across our staff following our day with David Wells.
Throughout the day we were really challenged by the reminder to not let our ‘how’ become our ‘why’ and recognised the danger of making business the “primary homily of our lives.”
Teaching life is busy and can become all consuming. But David reminded us that we don’t get out of bed to improve data, but rather to “make people’s lives better.” Catholic schools are human institutions – we exist to help our young people be fully alive and we do this best by being authentic witnesses of virtue and joyful messengers of the Good News.
The imagery that we get from this parable is clear. A flock of 99 sheep with one sheep becoming distracted and wandering off. Jesus explains this to the Pharisees and the scribes in a way that is relatable even though they are still left scratching their head when Jesus acts in a way that seems oppositional to the law of the time. They cannot understand why Jesus would want to spend his time with a sinner. The question is why does Jesus choose to do this? Why would Jesus spend time with sinners, outcasts and tax collectors?
The NCEA examination period for this year runs from Thursday 7 November through until Monday 2 December. Senior students (Year 11 – Year 13) will be released for study leave on Friday 1 November (last day for Seniors).
When NCEA releases results in January there is ALWAYS a massive delay in accessing the website. To avoid this, all students who are entered for NCEA this year should ensure that they have registered on the NZQA website before results are released.
Senior Attitude and Effort Awards
These awards will be presented during the morning assembly in week 3 of Term Four (Tuesday 29 October). Students who are receiving an award will be alerted by 22 October.
Junior Attitude and Effort Awards
These awards will be presented during the morning assembly in week 9 of Term Four (Monday 9 December). Students who are receiving an award will be alerted by 2 December.
Parents are welcome to attend the assembly.
End of Year Prize Giving
The final prize giving for the year is scheduled for Tuesday 10 December. The ceremony starts at 10am.
For NCEA Exam Timetable 2019, please click the read more
We are excited to announce that Sera Won Year 13 has had her painting selected for the prestigious Wallace Secondary School Art Awards as a finalist.
The Wallace Secondary School Art Awards recognises and celebrates emerging artistic talent in New Zealand. We congratulate Sera on her high profile achievement in Visual Art.
The Exhibition of Winners and Selected Finalists will be open to the public at the Pah Homestead from Tuesday 17 September to Sunday 10 November 2019, from Tuesday to Friday 10am – 3pm, Saturday and Sunday 8am – 5pm.
NCEA performances held twice a year feature those students who specialise in Music Performance as a subject.
Our results continue to be of an extremely high level in these performances.
Music from several genres is performed from Classical and Jazz, to Rock.
Last month saw Aquinas debaters argue their way to victory!
Noah van Oudenaaren, Fionn Blackman and Ben Sokimi matched their wit and wisdom against Sacred Heart Boys’ College from Auckland – and came out winners of the Jane Schollum trophy.
Lucy Dekker. Isaac Jarden and Charlotte Watson competed int the Bay-wide Debating Development tournament, for teams from Year 9 – 12. Most schools in the wider Tauranga region were represented, and after four hotly contested debates, Aquinas came out on top! Well done team!
Congratulations to all of our wonderful debaters! Bring on 2020 . . .
ITM Band and Orchestra Festival
The Waikato ITM Band and Orchestra Festival was an exciting 1-day music festival held at Waikato University, on Friday 23 August. A celebration of performances from over 75 ensembles including Percussion groups, String ensembles, Orchestras, Concert and Jazz bands saw participants and adjudicators treated to an awesome day’s entertainment.
The Aquinas Concert Band and Jazz Band travelled by bus to take part in the festival and the students conducted themselves beautifully, both on and off stage. The Concert Band and Jazz Band delivered outstanding performances, under the direction of Mrs Cooney and each band was awarded a Silver Award for their efforts. Repertoire included Stone Mountain Fantasy, El Cabara and Mission Impossible from the Concert Band and Sesame Street, Rome Wasn’t built in a Day, Prayer Meeting and Natural Woman was performed by the Jazz Band. An outstanding result and a thoroughly enjoyable day had by all. A special mention also of our wonderful itinerant music teachers for their contribution to the rehearsal process leading up to the event and for also displaying their musical skills on the day.
Congratulations to all students who participated, we look forward to returning to this fantastic festival next year!
It was early start on Thursday 12th September for the 17 students travelling to the Taupo Big Music Day.
Our huge thanks to the parents and staff who were able to transport the students to this event. Every year this is a great day for students who learn an instrument to play in a large ensemble with other students from around the Bay of Plenty.
Our students were represented throughout the orchestra in the strings, woodwind and brass sections.
The Night Is Young is a show, in which ten Bay of Plenty secondary schools from Katikati to Te Puke, are invited to showcase their performing arts talents on the Baycourt Stage.
This year the concert held in August showcased the talents of Joccos Groove – a jazz combo which includes two of our Aquinas music students, Baxter Blair on Trumpet and Kean Funtelar on Bass Guitar. The band perform a variety of Jazz, Funk and fusion charts.
The audience was captivated during their performances and the performers were well received.
The Junior Choir performed an intensive repertoire for the Tauranga Primary Schools Music Festival on 26th August at Baycourt Theatre. The theme of the festival this year was ‘Songs from the Movies’, so their repertoire included “Dancing Queen” by Queen and “I See Fire” by Ed Sheeran.
The Junior Choir put in many hours of rehearsal in the months leading up to the event and their hard work definitely paid off. Mrs Murphy directed the choir and Whetumarama Timutimu accompanied them on the piano.
A huge congratulations to Finn Elliott-Lowe who won the Jocelyn Bassett-Smith Award this year. This award is a $900 singing scholarship awarded to one student involved in the festival each year.
Well done to all of our athletes who competed in Winter Tournament Week and the AIMS GAMES this term. All the details are below for you to catch up on.
Thank you to all of our parents and staff who have been involved in these events and have given up their time from their families and jobs to ensure it all went smoothly.
Looking forward to Term 4, Summer Sports will be getting under way shortly and we will also be having our Annual Sports Awards on Wednesday 30 October. Please pop this date in your calendar as it is always a great event.
Catch up on the latest news below.
Applications for 2020 Aquinas Sports Academy classes are now open.
Classes are available at Years 8, 9 and 10.
Applications close on Friday 22 November at 5.00pm – no late applications will be accepted. If references are delayed, they will be accepted conditional on application forms being submitted on time.
Application forms can be downloaded by clicking on the link below or are available at the Sports Office in the school Gym.
We are starting to prepare for our Annual Sports Prizegiving on Wednesday 30 October 2019.
Sports Representative Forms are available for students to fill in with all of their sporting achievements in the past year. We do rely on a lot of this information to ensure we have not missed anything internally.
Please ensure your child has completed one of these forms if you feel they have achieved sporting success this year. Forms can be downloaded by clicking on the link below or collected from the Sports Office. These forms must be returned to the Sports Office by Wednesday 16 October.
Aquinas was well represented during Winter Tournament Week this year with Basketball, Football, Hockey and Netball teams traveling to Auckland, Rotorua, Hamilton and Whanganui.
We achieved some wonderful results over the week. Click here to read all about it!
What a brilliant week it was in The Bay for the AIMS Games. AC had 120 keen kids competing and representing Aquinas College with pride across 18 Teams.
A special congratulations must go to our Medal Winners – Kieran Death, Ella Hill, Eliana Hulsebosch, Ashton Matuku, Holly van den Borst and Isla Wills.
Click below to read how all the teams went over the week!
Five swimmers from Aquinas College raced at the 2019 New Zealand Secondary School Championships in Hamilton from Thursday 12 – Saturday 14 September.
Check out all their results here!
Lots of fun was had by the 9 Aquinas Competitors on the NI ski champs trip. Typical Ruapehu weather … some of the time was spent in the lodge, so they’re also now very good at Monopoly and 500!
Luckily, we had a fantastic half day at Turoa and a full day of races at Whakapapa which was absolutely ‘blue bird’.
Here are the results:
Aquinas College – Team A – 45 points placing 41st equal out of 108 teams
Charlotte Madams – Aquinas College – Team A 29.06 sec, 55th junior girls
Sean Meehan – Aquinas College – Team A 33.6 sec, 24th senior men
Joel Hayes – Aquinas College – Team A 35.1 sec
Conor McCarthy – Aquinas College – Team A 37.02 sec
Yarn Bombing Winners
Thank you to all of those who have made the effort to brighten up the college by getting involved in our yarn bombing initiative. Our overall winners were Odette and Wendy Roberson, and others who also won prizes were Laura Grace and students, Geraldine Hancock and family and Mel Rice and her workmates. Congrats to you all and we hope you enjoyed the prizes.
From Our Kitchen Cookbook
We are excited about the upcoming production of an Aquinas community cookbook “From Our Kitchen”.
We are looking for sponsorship from businesses and involvement from clubs and codes to make this cookbook a treasure of amazing recipes from your family and friends. Clubs and codes – this is a fundraising opportunity for you too so get involved and make the most of the opportunity! For advertising or sponsorship opportunities please contact the Advertising Manager on the project Lee Ann Taylor – email@example.com. Please go to the link on our PTA website page here where you will find all of the details for advertising and sponsorship opportunities.
The cookbook will be launched prior to Christmas so if you are wanting to order it for Christmas presents we are taking details for pre-orders now. This will be a high quality cookbook priced at $39.95 and we’re providing discounts for multiple orders. $70.00 for two and for 10+ the price per book is $30.00.
We are planning to feature recipes and photos from our community along with health and wellness content so get in touch with us now with your recipes, your stories about the recipes, your family photos, your clubs and codes photos and ideas for your club’s involvement.
Next PTA Meeting: Tuesday 15th October in the staffroom.
Like us on Facebook: Aquinas College PTA Friends
Want to deepen your faith?
Or find out more about the Holy Spirit?
The Life in the Spirit course begins on TUESDAY, 1st OCTOBER 2019 at St Mary Immaculate Church, Tauranga 7pm, for an hour and a half, and continues for six weeks every Tuesday thereafter. This programme will be run by Deacon Henk Gielen, Barry & Deanne Willemse.
Check out the trailer for this course at:
To register, please follow this link: http://taurangamoanacatholic.nz/our-place/latest-news/
Please be aware that the office will be closed for the first week and a half of the school holiday break, and will open again on 10th October.
Your Physio is Marijke Sonneveld
Appointments available @ school for your injury rehab and injury prevention education
See the school office for appointment requests
Or phone 07 5779798
Twisted ankle? Out of plaster? Pulled muscle?
Sore shoulder? Injured Back?
Your first appointment is at no charge. No referral necessary
Your School Physiotherapist can help you
The 2020 term dates are below. We have worked with St. Mary’s School and St. Thomas More School to share a common start of year date.
30th – 31st January – Teacher only days + 2020 Student Executive leadership camp
30th January – Course confirmation for senior students
3rd February – All Students present (College pōwhiri and Mass for new students and families)
Ends Thursday 9th April
Starts Tuesday 28 April
Ends Friday 3 July
Starts Monday 20 July
Ends Friday 25 September
Starts Monday 12 October
Ends Wednesday 9 December*
* Potentially subject to change – dependent on the allocation of teacher only days.
Please follow this LINK for the 2019 Term Dates and holidays.
Please follow this LINK for Term Four’s Menu
Every Wednesday lunchtime in Room 13.
Come and get one-on-one support from a Science Teacher ?
At Aquinas College we are extremely fortunate to be able to offer the following Itinerant Music Lessons in school time.
There is no cost for the actual lessons but there will be a $15.00 charge to cover folders and music that students receive and may keep. We do have a small number of instruments available to hire. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
If your son/daughter would like to take up this fantastic opportunity they can collect an enrolment form from the school office or from Mrs Cooney
Instruments available include;
Strings: Mrs Gardiner violin, viola, cello, double bass
Woodwind and Saxophone: Ms Martin, Mrs Jones flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, bass, clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone
Brass: Mr Thomas Trumpet, Trombone, Tuba, French Horn, Baritone Horn, Euphonium
Drums and Bass: Mr Barlow
Other instruments may be available upon request. Please contact email@example.com
Out of hours beginner Keyboard lessons are also available Year 7 and 8 students.
Private lessons are also available where fees are paid directly to the tutor for voice and guitar.
Guitar Sean Bodley 021 02489460 firstname.lastname@example.org
Voice Glenese Blake 027 4913386 email@example.com
Please contact the above tutors directly re lessons. Fees are paid directly to them.