As we move quickly towards the end of the Term, I would like to pass on our collective thanks to all of our parents for your support of the students during the term. A great deal has happened and your support and involvement in many of the activities which the college provides is greatly appreciated. In particular, my thanks to parents and supporters for your support as coaches, managers and transporters in the different Special Character, sporting and cultural activities that have occurred. My congratulations and thanks also go to the students who have managed themselves well in all aspects of school life during the term.
The Hui Aranga, a major Easter event for Maori Catholic iwi around the North Island, is hosted every six years by Tauranga iwi. This will be the third time it has been hosted at Aquinas College and it involves the use of most of the college buildings and grounds for their programme. We will be running normal classes from Monday – Wednesday of that week, but there will not be classes on Thursday (13 April). This is the time when people arrive from around the country and prepare for the powhiri in the afternoon. Everybody is welcome to attend the powhiri which starts at 2pm in the college gym. The programme for the Hui Aranga is on the college website.
We wish all in our college and wider community a relaxing and blessed Easter and trust that our students & staff take the opportunity over the break to relax and recharge the batteries after a busy term!
The season of Lent started with our Ash Wednesday liturgy. Loretta Knights, one of our Special Character Committee leaders, spoke to the students about our Lenten obligations. Deacon Vince officiated at the liturgy; this was a first for the deacon!
On 5th March, the Bishop celebrated the inaugural mass of the parish of St Thomas Aquinas in the Action Centre. At this occasion, our student leaders were blessed and commissioned and a blessing was given to staff and the Board of Trustees of Aquinas College. It was great to see many staff, students and parents at this special mass.
SPECIAL CATHOLIC CHARACTER
At the Ash Wednesday Liturgy, Deacon Vince challenged us to use Lent as a time to make the ‘selfish me’ move over and make some room for the ‘unselfish me’.
A few weeks into Lent, we caught up with some students to see how they are going with their Lenten promises and to hear their overall thoughts on Lent as a season in the Catholic church.
SPECIAL CATHOLIC CHARACTER
We have our annual Service Day on Thursday, 25th May. This is a wonderful opportunity for all students to give their time in service to the community.
Service Day has become an important part of what we do as a college, and it has the potential to promote the values that the College stands for, as well as providing our students with an insight into the needs of others in society.
SPECIAL CATHOLIC CHARACTER
Caritas is a Catholic aid agency raising funds for Kiribati. This island is facing problems due to the issue of climate change. 10P took part in the Caritas Challenge to raise awareness and funds for Kiribati.
Numerous activities and stalls were set up for the school community, including a bake sale, lolly jar guess, Kahoot quiz and a ‘Silence for Justice’ day.
In February the school acknowledged our top achievers from 2016 at our Academic Honours assembly. To receive an Honours award a student must gain an excellence endorsement for their NCEA with at least 60 credits at excellence or with at least 2 subjects endorsed at excellence.
We were thrilled that there were 57 recipients this year.
Rehearsals for our musical production of “Bugsy Malone” are well under way and the Show is promising to be an unmissable event in our school calendar. The cast, crew and staff are looking forward to performing together at Baycourt Theatre from 11th to 13th of May, 2017.
This pint-sized, pinstriped classic is a tongue-in-cheek tribute to the gangster films of the 1920’s. Bugsy Malone is good, clean, comedic fun! Two gangs comprised completely of children, square off in a 1920’s rivalry of Capone-ian standards.
Look out for stunning performances from Michael Graham as Bugsy, Millie Elliot as Blousey, Jessica Robinson as Tallulah, Ben Sokimi as Dandy Dan, Carson Wills as Fat Sam and Isaac Jarden as Fizzy.
As Term One comes to an end, we are canvassing all Year 13 students via our Careers Questionnaire regarding their future intentions for study and/or career interests. Anyone feeling unsure should book in for a Careers Consultation with Mr Smith. This proactive approach helps gear our careers programme (and information dissemination) to students’ individual needs.
Student Lilli Scott discusses the importance of a Social Conscience
Silence is golden. Or is it? In a world of constant liberation through the internet we are asked to assess our moral stance more regularly. Topics like immigration, misogyny, climate change and civil revolutions are regularly circulating through our news and media.
The Y13 Sport Science class learnt the finer skills of Stand up paddle boarding with the crew from Assault Paddle boarding. Conditions were excellent that allowed a fantastic paddle from the surf side at The Mount around Mauao and back to Pilot Bay. The students were pitted against each in head to head races as well as having to show their skills in the surf.
Welcome to Dannaka Dorrington who has been appointed as our full-time Sports Co-ordinator. Dannaka comes to us having worked at St Cuthberts Girls College in Auckland. She replaces Hikitia Gallagher.
The Aquinas College Athletics Sports was held at Tauranga Domain on Friday 24 February. The whole school were involved in a great day of athletic competition with 9 records broken.
Over 50 students were then selected to represent Aquinas College at the BOP Athletics Championships at the Tauranga Domain on Tuesday 7 March, achieving some great results.
Aquinas College student Jack Egan has been selected to represent New Zealand at the Junior Worlds competition for C1 Canoe Slalom in Slovakia. At 15 years of age, Jack will be one of the youngest members of the under-18 team is heading off in July this year. Jack will compete against the world’s top junior paddlers from Oceania, Europe, the United States and Russia.
Recently the two-tiered swimming sports were held at Baywave (Y9-Y13) and Greerton (Y7/Y8) pools. The most fascinating aspect for those in attendance at both was the breath-taking beauty of watching several top class swimmers, demonstrating their abilities across the various stroke disciplines. Find out who dominated the Aquinas College 2017 Swimming Sports by clicking the links below.
The Bay of Plenty Cricket Player/s of the Month March Award has seen the Aquinas College First XI receive a rare team award. Aquinas College has become the first Bay of Plenty Secondary School to progress from the qualifying draw to the ND First XI Finals, which sees them competing against a number of Super Eight Cricket Schools.
The Aquinas Twilight Festival was a great success. Huge thanks to parents, teachers, students, our suppliers and our sponsors for making the evening such a hit. Together with our clubs and groups we were successful in fundraising around $10,000 and we are delighted with the feedback we have had regarding how enjoyable the evening was. A highlight was the hosting of the Merivale school students and teachers who thoroughly enjoyed the Lip Sync, the course and the complimentary hot dog. Another favourite was the foam tent sponsored by Taylor Brothers.
Adolescence is a time of growth and development and can be challenging for some. School nurse Mrs. Paula Ngatai will be conducting health checks on Yr 9 students over the next 2 terms, using the Ministry of Health’s “HEEADSSS” assessment tool. This includes a hearing & vision check and a range of questions relating to home, school, eating, drugs/alcohol, depression, sexuality and safety. Any health risks identified will have the appropriate support or health services offered to student and family. If you wish to opt out from having the check done please contact the nurse on 5432400, ext 241.
Resilience is, simply put, the ability to bounce back when things go wrong.
When something bad happens, when we get hurt, or when faced with a serious challenge, a resilient person recovers fairly easily.
Our resilience is linked to our general wellbeing and happiness, so clearly it is something we want to promote in our children.
Liz from Attitude has been in to present to the Year 9-13s on a range of topics to do with general health and well being. Students agreed that is was both challenging and uplifting to tackle some of these important social issues.
Topics included Friendship Skills for Year 9, introducing the concept of ‘Hauora’. Year 10’s discussed the topics of Drugs and Alcohol while Year 11 considered the topics of Attitude and Resilience. Year 12 looked at Relationships while Year 13 discussed Mental Health.
Winter School Uniform – Commencing Term 2, all students must wear the correct winter school uniform. Note that the Uniform Shop has moved to Elizabeth Street. Second hand uniforms may also be purchased from the school. Open Tuesdays from 1.00 – 3.00pm.
Vehicles in School Grounds – Recently there have been incidences of vehicles driving through school grounds and fields. We ask that you to park your vehicles in the car parks provided & walk to the area of the school that you wish to visit. We would also ask that all sports codes refrain from parking on school playing fields.
Dogs – As the school has a ‘No Dogs’ policy that applies 7 days a week, please refrain from bringing your pets into the school grounds.
The Entertainment Book is an important fund raiser that enables the purchase of valuable resources for our students.
Please support this PTA initiative by purchasing a copy for $65 either by following the online link below, sending a cheque / cash to the school or by completing your credit card details on the paperwork sent with the book.
The Entertainment Book contains hundreds of discount offers for local restaurants, cafés, attractions, hotel accommodation and travel, valid until 1 June 2018.
PTA are delighted to report that the Business Directory raised $8,000. Thank you to the 80 supporting businesses and please support these businesses that have so generously donated to our school.
Dates for the Diary:
Aquinas College PTA Evening Event – 10th June. This promises to be a great night so mark the date in your diary and we will provide more information in Term Two on how you can get involved.
Aquinas PTA AGM and next PTA meeting – May 2nd at 5.30pm.
Lunchtime Hot Dog Sales – 23rd May and 20th June.
Tauranga Swim School offers quality lessons for all ages and abilities.
Check it out on facebook @ facebook.com/taurangaswimschool
Book your space now for the Holiday Intensive Program and Term 2.
Contact Andrea for more info: 027 286 8506 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Alpha is a series of interactive sessions that explore the basics of the Christian faith. Each session looks at a different question and creates conversation. It’s an open, informal and honest space to explore and discuss life’s big questions together.
PTA are delighted to report that we have invested in two concrete table tennis tables and two volleyball nets that have been placed around the courtyard area for all to enjoy. They are being well used by students from all year levels.
Other PTA funding has recently been allocated to the Fiji Service Trip, the Chess Club and to Bugsy Malone – the upcoming school production. PTA also supported student Caritas fundraising initiatives at the Twilight Festival.