Newsletter #1 2024 / Pānui-ā-kura #1 2024 (9/02/2024)

Nau mai, hoki mai anō e te whānau whānui ki tēnei tau hōu kura!!!!

We hope you had a great Christmas and summer break. It was great to see all of our children back on Wednesday last week.

As usual, our newsletter will be large but remember, at the end will be all the dates needed. Please look through the whole thing as there could be something important for your child at the end (we do random order).

2024 Structure
We have so many exciting things happening this year. We have our first two fully bilingual (half the time in each language) rooms operating in the senior school. These have a max of 18 students in them (sorry they are both full). We begin schooling by strengthening English as the children’s main language of use and as that becomes stronger, Māori is brought in. You will be able to see this from the classes below. You will note Room 8 is different and this is for two reasons, teacher ability and chances of the students reaching fluency before leaving St Anne’s. As we have only been bilingual for just over two years (2022 partly, 2023 fully), it can take on average 4-6 years to instill fluency in a second language. These children have not had this amount of time to get there at St Anne’s (they will still find the subject super easy at high school as will be better than most!!) so the foot is off the accelerator a little.
Room 1 – English focus (Māori is a subject)
Room 2 – English focus (Māori is a subject)
Room 3 – Bilingual English 2/3 of the time, Māori 1/3
Room 4 – Bilingual English 2/3 of the time, Māori 1/3
Room 5 – Fully bilingual (Years 5/6)
Room 6 – Bilingual English 2/3 of the time, Māori 1/3
Room 7 – Fully bilingual (years 7/8)
Room 8 – English focus (Māori is a subject)

Yes, we are investigating the possibility of a bilingual Samoan class/classes next year, but this will depend on many things. All Samoan students will have the opportunity to learn Samoan regularly this year (no matter what class they are in) with Ateliana Tiatia.  In the meantime, just encourage your children to give it everything in all languages they have the opportunity to learn this year. Languages are a code, once you start to solve the code, it gets easier and easier.

Pasifika Development
Last year I was on the Tautai o le Moana programme to help pasifika principals or principals leading pasifika children to enrich what we offer pasifika children. The programme targeted me but also the staff. It actually really helped us develop what we offer all children, in terms of appreciating all cultures. I have been selected with one other Nationwide from 40 odd schools to present to the next cohort and Ministry at Paihia in a few weeks due to the amount of change and effect seen by the leaders. I am super proud to represent us there and to share our journey so far.

We farewell Colleen after seven years looking after our children. She started when Kidsbase began here when we had 5 classrooms. We will miss her smile and caring attitude. We wish her all the best for ticking off those things on her bucket list!
If you need before or after school care, register on
Morning hours 7.30am-8.30am
Afternoon hours 2.50pm-6pm (paid per hour)

Prize Giving

It was a long one, but amazing!!! Here is a picture of our top two students who received the Dux award from the school. Please note, this is not awarded lightly. It is assumed that every event that comes up is participated in with full effort, they will opt in groups, Mahi Kāika will be complete (this is a must) etc.
Video of the prize giving is here

Our Caretaker
During the break, I had the time with my family to lay Dad’s ashes to rest in Tuapeka Mouth, a place he spent a lot of time as a child/youth. He rests with his sister and both parents. Thanks again for your support last year!

Bilingual Hui / For families of students in Room 5 and 7
Tuesday 20th February 3.15pm in Room 7
We would love all families who have students in these rooms to try to make this meeting. It is fine to bring siblings. We aim to:
-Let you know the plan for the year
-Discuss concerns and hopes
-Talk about language acquisition
-Discuss how you can help at home
-Discuss support you need
-See who is available and when, to help in class or on tripsCycle Safety
A big thank you to the Council Cycle Safety team for coming in to teach our students over the last few days. They were so energetic and helpful. Our students learnt a lot and had a blast.

Parish Website + Preference Forms
The parish has a new website, please check it out. Please go here for preference certificates for siblings or for high school.

Our Future Cathedral Precinct Survey
Bishop Michael has put forward a proposal for our new Cathedral and has asked for feedback from the diocesan community. The link below will be open until March 24th 2024 for you to provide feedback.

New RE Curriculum – Tō Tātou Whakapono
Over the past few years the National Centre for Religious Studies has been working closely with diocesan religious education advisors, managers of Catholic education, principals, teachers, and many other members of the Catholic community to develop a new Religious Education Curriculum and provide resources to support teaching and learning. The aim of this national RE curriculum is to provide a framework for the purpose, content and journey of Religious Education in all Catholic schools, from Year 1 – Year 13.

We are very excited that the 1st phase of learning and resources have been released which means that Rooms 1 & 2 are able to begin using the new curriculum this term. Their focus for the term will be on ‘Te Rongopai – The Good News.’

The curriculum content and resources for the rest of the school are continuing to be developed and will be rolled out over the next two years. In the meantime, we will continue to teach from our current curriculum. All classes will be focusing on the Jesus strand this term.

If you would like to learn more about the new curriculum you can visit:

Altar Servers
All students that have made their First communion and wish to be part of the Stella Maris Parish Altar Servers ministry please register using the form –

School Mass
This term our whole school will be attending weekly Mass on Wednesdays at 9.15am. Our first school Mass will be next week (Wednesday 14th February) to celebrate Ash Wednesday. All parents and whānau are welcome to join us in celebrating Mass each week.

We will also be celebrating two weekend Masses each term with the Parish. The senior school (rooms 5-8) have their school Mass on Saturday 24th February at 6pm, and the junior school (rooms 1-4) have their Mass on Sunday 10th March at 10.30am.

UPCOMING EVENTS – If you have any questions, please email or talk to the person whose email address follows the reminder.

Monday 12 February – Visitors from National University of Education, South Korea
Tuesday 13 February – Kapahaka begins 2pm-2.20pm Juniors (Rooms 1-4)/ 2.20pm-2.55pm Rooms 5&7 + performance temā
Wednesday 14 February – Ash Wednesday Mass 9.15am all welcome
Wednesday 14 February – Dean Isherwood heading to Australia to represent New Zealand at Surf Boating. All the best to him!!!
Wednesday 14 February – Hanmer Camp leaving Years 7/8
Thursday 15 February – Hanmer Camp
Friday 16 February – Hanmer Camp returns at 1pm
Friday 16 February – Special/Secret event 1pm at school
Tuesday 20 February – Bilingual Hui – Rooms 5 and 7 family meeting 3.15pm in Room 7 (siblings welcome). Afternoon tea provided.
Thursday 22 February – Technology restarts after camp for Years 7&8, bus leaves 8.30am
Thursday 23 February – Lawn Bowls begins for years 7&8
Friday 24 February – Ōtamahua tiripi (trip to Quail Island). Rūma 5&7 Leaving 8.30am
Saturday 25 February – Senior Mass 6pm-7pm Rooms 5,6,7,8 are expected to attend and represent the school. This is only once a term. Tidy dress please. We will sit together at the front right looking in.
Monday 26 February – First Communion Parents’ Meeting 7pm @ St Marys New Brighton 116 Lonsdale Street, New Brighton, Christchurch 8083
Tuesday 27 February – PALS training day (selected year 7&8 students)
Tuesday 5 March – Bishop Michael visiting St Anne’s School
Sunday 10 March – Junior Mass 10.30am-11.30am Rooms 1,2,3,4 are expected to attend and represent the school. This is only once a term. Tidy dress please. We will sit together at the front right looking in.
To come
To come
Friday 29 March – Good Friday – No School
Monday 1 April – Easter Monday – No School
Tuesday 2 April – Easter Tuesday – No School
Friday 12 April – Last day of term 2.50pm finish
Monday 29 April – First day of term 2 9am start

Te Atua te aro’a!
Kia manuia,
Dallas Wichman
Tumuaki / Principal / Pū ‘Āpi’i Ma’ata