Dear Parents, Caregivers and Families
Kia ora, kia orana, talofa, malo e lelei, fakaalofa atu, hello and greetings

From the Principal

Hello everyone and welcome to our second week at school. There is quite a lot to impart in this newsletter so please read carefully.

Firstly some congratulations to some of our awesome students. Miss Annabelle Bray in Room 3 had a birthday in the Christmas holidays. What made this birthday special was that Annabelle decided to donate all of her birthday gifts to the Te Whai Community Trust’s Christmas Aroha baskets. It takes a very special person to do such a selfless act, and Annabelle we are extremely proud of you. It is the epitome of our value of Working Together Harmoniously. I actually spent a bit of time with Room 3 last week. They have been very creative with their butterfly designs, and I was invited by Mrs McCracken to join them while they were doing a survey of caterpillars in our butterfly garden. They are a very industrious little bunch of scientists.

Today you will receive a letter about our Breakfast Club. This will be running on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings for any students who have not had breakfast, or who would like a second breakfast. We are looking for volunteers to help supervise students from 8-8:30 on those mornings in Room 1. If you would like to help please leave your name with Vicki in the office. All the weetbix and milk is donated by Fonterra and Sanitarium.

Speaking of volunteers the Helping Hands are urgently looking for someone with event co-ordination experience who would be willing to help co-ordinate the Guy Fawkes event. This will be a paid position. As you can appreciate it is a huge job, and getting bigger every year. If you do think you can fill this position please contact Robyn Sibtsen at school or Erica Casey on asap.

We are having an amnesty on  all Library books and reading books that may be lurking at home from the end of last year. So can you please look under beds, in toy boxes or behind the couch and bring back any run away books. We would appreciate it!

Just a wee word now about attendance. Every week we have to send in a report on the attendance of the students at Tomarata School, to the Ministry, for their data. There is an expectation for students to have at least 90% attendance per term ( although the Ministry ask for 95% !). We mark the attendance twice a day as that is how it is calculated. There are a variety of ways that attendance is marked e.g. sick; late; medical; justified, and explained but not justified ,to name a few. If you choose to  take your family for a holiday in term time, we have to record it as explained but not justified, as there are specific holiday breaks for students and teachers. Therefore this will impact on the total attendance for your child, and if it falls below a certain total by the end of the year your child will receive an unsatisfactory attendance note on their end of year report. We do not supply work for students taking holidays in term time, plus it will mean that they will miss information and learning for the period of time that they are away. It is not always possible to “catch” students up on lost learning as we have to consider the rest of the class. We appreciate that there are a number of valid reasons why you take holidays in term time, but I would ask that you think carefully about it before you make that decision.

On to nicer things- if you wish your child to learn the guitar, piano or drums don’t forget about the 2 music teachers that come to Tomarata School. They are Martin Worthington at A1+ music, and Stephen Fulford at  Please get in touch with them to explore what your child may wish to learn, prices, times etc.

I would like to congratulate Ms Andie McGuinness who is our CoL ( Community of Learning) in school teacher. Ms McGuinness also is our school coordinator for PB4L ( Positive behaviour for Learning). Our PB4L focus this week is unpacking what Growing through learning from our mistakes looks, sounds and feels like in the classroom. I would also like to let you know that we have a student teacher working alongside Andie in Room 6. Her name is Lorna Wakefield, and we wish her well in the weeks to come.

Unfortunately  due to the weather forecast we have had to postpone  our whole school Beach Day on Thursday it will be rescheduled for sometime in March. I look forward to seeing you all at  our first whole school assembly on Friday at 1:45 pm. See you all there!

I hope that you enjoyed Waitangi Day yesterday. It is not just a holiday, it is a a day that we need to stop and reflect on the importance of Te Tiriti o Waitangi for all New Zealanders. It is a major focus for our students this term.

Yesterday morning we held our first new parents morning tea for 2021. Many thanks to the Helping Hands ladies who supplied yummy treats. We appreciate it. We had a lovely group of parents turn up to chat, meet new people, and have any questions answered.

The New Zealand Fairy Tern Charitable Trust donated some gorgeous calendars for our classrooms. They are a very hardworking group doing their best to save such an endangered species. Many thanks for your kind donation.

Lastly our school photos will be taken next week on Thursday and Friday. More information regarding cost etc will be on the school website and Facebook. There is a small poster on the office door now.

Whew- well that’s it for now.

Key Dates for this Term


Hibiscus Coast Weetbix Tryathlon March 28th 2021

Please email if your child/children  would like to enter. If we have enough interest I will submit a school team. Please let me know ASAP.


Community Notices

Otamatea Martial Arts classes are starting up again for this year. Please see details on facebook.

Tomarata Playcentre.  Tues,Thurs,Fridays  9.30am – 12pm  09 423 9074

Aotearoa Surf  please check out their website and contacts details below for further information.

Che Burnett
General Manager | Aotearoa Surf
P: 09 431 5760
M: 021 442 163
11 Te Arai Point Road, Te Arai
New Zealand

We would like to thank Bayleys Wellsford for their sponsorship