From the Principal

By Mr Simon Coleman | Posted: Friday February 9, 2018

Tena koutou,

Welcome to our first Newsletter for 2018. I do hope that you have had a wonderful Christmas and New Year break and that your son or daughter has had a positive start to their academic year.

A special welcome to all our new students and families for this year which includes 85 Year 7’s and 28 new students across our other year levels. 2018 has started very well for us with the highest roll for a number of years which is surprising given the small Year 13 group we have compared to other years [52 compared to 68 in 2017]. Should this trend continue we will be close to 600 students in 2019 which will be close to the maximum capacity we have with our current available classrooms. This from a school perspective indicates that we have both a strong reputation in South Canterbury and that we deliver quality educational opportunities for those that attend Geraldine High School.

We have a very strong support team for our students with our Deans, Guidance Counsellor and Social Worker along with our Senior Leadership Team so should there be any questions or concerns for your son or daughter, please make contact as soon as you can so that we can put support in place.

Along with the usual school start we are excited to welcome our 11 new teaching staff who bring a wealth of knowledge, experience and enthusiasm to Geraldine High School. Already their influence is apparent with students talking about their new teacher and the connections these teachers have made with students outside of class.

Photo: Back row, from left: Steven McNulty (Music), Roxanne Rooney (HoD Mathematics), Jarrod Wallace (Languages), Steve Ludwig (Technology); Middle row, from left: Mary Powell (Acting HoD Learning Support for Term 1), Sarah Hamilton (Year 8 Homeroom), Georgia Fogarty (Year 7 Homeroom), Kate McKeown (English, Social Studies , Learning Support & PE); Front row, from left: Paige Richmond (Chemistry), Jane Voigt (Science). Absent: Katie Martin (Agriculture).

School Changes

Over the summer break there have been a number of changes around staffing and property.

  • We have moved the Alt Ed classroom that used to be at the front of the school to now at the back close to the Primary Industries Academy and Outdoor Education areas to be utilised by these subjects where possible.

  • The administration/office area has been reconfigured to accommodate our new Assistant Principal, Ms Maria Heitkonig and our Business Manager, Ms Rae Coburn to assist with greater efficiencies and communication.

  • The previous Assistant Principal office is now a Conference/Meeting room so that parents and other visitors can meet along with the range of meetings that we have each day at school.

  • We have had some further staff appointments with Mrs Mary Powell being our Acting Head of Learning Support for this term, Mrs Andrea Hornsby has taken on the position of Food Technician, Mrs Mel O’Connor is now in the mentoring position and currently, we are in the process of appointing a Reading Tutor and Arts Coordinator.

Supporting School

We are always looking for parents to assist with aspects of our school and currently we are looking for coaches, managers and anyone able to help out with a number of sports teams. We have a wide range of extra-curricular activities that we offer our students so if you are interested in assisting, please contact Mrs Kim Andrews, our Sportfit Coordinator via email [email protected] or by calling 693 007 extn 7215.

Our PTA [Parent Teacher Association] does a tremendous job of supporting our school and providing resources to allow us to give the students the best education while they attend Geraldine High School. Currently they are preparing for our annual GRAM Rogaine on Sunday 25th March and I am sure they would welcome any parents who could assist with this or be on the PTA committee which meet once a month. The PTA are currently fundraising money for a climbing wall as part of the Gym upgrade that we will look to start this year. Please contact Mrs Jane Stack on 027045206371 or Mrs Karen Woodley on 021 411 288 if you would like to know more.

Buses and Parking

We have had complaints from local residents of cars parking over their driveways at various times during the day. If you do need to come into the office can you please be mindful of this so that you are not blocking residents right-of-ways and driveways.

I do hope that your son or daughter has enjoyed the start to the school year in a safe and supportive learning environment.

Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tātou katoa