Queen's Birthday - School Closed

Awatapu College will be closed on Monday 1 June due to Queen's Birthday. Normal timetable will resume on Tuesday 2 June.

Term Update - 28 May 2020

Dear Parents/Caregivers

It has been great to see our students back on site and reengaging with their onsite learning.

The current Alert Level 2 restrictions and the time away from school during the lockdown mean that our teaching and assessment programmes, along with many of our planned events, may need to be reconsidered and rescheduled. I hope that you can appreciate that it will take some time to work through all of the implications so we will not have all of the answers at once. We will continue to keep you informed as decisions are made.

Departments have reviewed their courses and current assessment plans. It may be unrealistic to try and get through the content that was previously planned; this will depend on a number of factors and may be different for each course. This could result in a reduction in the number of credits assessed in some subjects but we believe at this time will still allow our seniors to gain their qualification(s).

This includes Level Three (Year 13) courses that provide opportunities to meet the requirements of University Entrance. Our staff will continue to work with students to ensure that the assessment programme available to them will meet their needs.

If you have questions regarding courses you can email the appropriate Head of Department. Email addresses can be found on the College website.  

As you may have already heard the NCEA external examinations has been delayed. An updated examination timetable is available on the NZQA website. Please ensure that you are familiar with the revised timetable, as the NCEA examination period will now continue beyond the end of the school year.

Junior students will still finish for the year on Thursday 3 December.

With regards to Sports and Co-Curricular activities, we will continue to adhere to the advice provided by the Ministries of Education and Health, and the relevant sporting bodies / organisations. Some sporting codes may be underway by the end of the term.

Parent-Teacher Interviews were scheduled for earlier this term. Under the current restrictions, these will not be going ahead. Providing an opportunity for parents to meet with their child’s teachers is important and we are looking at rescheduling.

Alert Level 2 restrictions and the uncertainty of what might happen over the coming weeks and months (including a move back to Level 3 or 4) make it problematic to continue with planning the School Ball. While some schools have already cancelled these sorts of events, we met with the Ball Committee today and have decided to wait until the next announcement from the Prime Minister regarding group gatherings and requirements before making a final decision. It may be that the Ball goes ahead with Year 13 only and is not open to outside partners. If it goes ahead, the date will not change.

A reminder to those who were loaned school chromebooks / devices, or issued Ministry devices, that these must be returned to the school office.

Finally, a reminder of Queen’s Birthday on Monday 1 June. School will be closed on this day.

Yours sincerely,
Gary Yeatman

NCEA Exams 2020 - Revised Dates

NZQA exams will run Monday 16 November - Wednesday 9 December 2020. The exam timetable is available on the NZQA website.

Term Update - 12 May 2020

Dear Parents/Caregivers

Reopening at Level 2
It was great to hear the Prime Minister's announce that schools can return on Monday 18 May! I know that students and staff have missed the interactions that occur when onsite.

We were also reminded that Covid-19 is a tricky virus and it will keep exploiting any opportunity to creep into our communities. As a school, the College continues to err on the side of caution.

To this end, over the last two weeks our cleaning team has been working hard to clean the College from “top to bottom”. As well as cleaning we have also chosen to employ a company to sanitize the entire school, using a process called “fogging”; this is used in Hospitals etc. In terms of cleaning, we feel comfortable we are ready for day one.

There will be some new procedures and processes for students to follow, such as use of hand sanitizer when entering classes. Other procedures will be outlined to students on day one and we will be regularly reminding them! 

Another issue at Level 2 is that some staff may be unable to return, or required to stay home due to illness, on top of this; our access to qualified relievers is limited at this time.

In light of these issues, and lessons learned from business that reopened under Level 3, we want to ensure we have our processes and procedures correct. We will not really know this until they are tested with students on site. 

To successfully implement these new procedures we will open on Monday 18 May and Tuesday 19 May for Years 9, 10 and 13. Years 11 and 12 will return on Wednesday 20 May - making this the first day the full school will be in attendance. We appreciate this has the potential to be disruptive but we want to “get it right”. It should also be noted that the Teacher Only Day scheduled for Friday 29 May will not be going ahead - it will be school as normal that day.

Students will return to week one of their timetable. At this stage, no assemblies will take place so students should attend form class.

The Ministry has advised us that buses will be operating. We ask that you speak with your child if they are a bus student about the need to maintain physical distancing when waiting for the bus, especially at the end of the school day.

Devices / Ministry of Education Materials
If you have a device issued by the College, or the Ministry, these are due back at school when your child returns. These can be returned to the school office.

Likewise, if your child has not used the hard materials that the Ministry of Education sent home it would be great to get those returned to us as well.

Student Illness
If you child is in anyway sick we ask that they stay home, as per Ministry of Health guidelines. If they present unwell during the day we will be in touch to arrange for your child to be picked up. 

Children Not Returning On Medical Grounds
If your child is unable to return on medical grounds, please email the Principal (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) with their name and form class so the attendance office can code appropriately.

Extra-Curricular Activities
We will aim to get our extensive extra curricula program fully underway as soon as possible. At this stage, we are waiting for further information from the Ministry, Sport New Zealand and local sports organisations. 

Lastly, I would like to thank parents/caregivers, staff, and students for their patience and ongoing support of the College during the lockdown. I hope that from next week we can start returning to normal.

Yours sincerely,
Gary Yeatman

Term Update - 21 April 2020

Dear Parents/Caregivers

As you may have heard the Government is moving the country to Level Three. This means the College will be open to supervise some students who are Year 9 or Year 10, AND whose caregivers have returned to work (outside of the home), AND need them supervised as there are no alternatives, from 9am to 3pm, starting Wednesday 29 April 2020.

Please note that normal timetabled classes will NOT be operating and students will be required to work independently so that we can maintain a safe distance between staff and students.

It is still the government's position that people should remain in their bubbles whenever possible, therefore we ask you only send your child if absolutely necessary.

This is not an “opt in and out” situation. This is so we can accurately report on who attended. Once students are registered to attend, unless sick, they must attend. If your child is unwell please let the College know they will not be in; just like other school days.

If they are needing to be supervised (no teaching), please note, and discuss with your child, the following:
• Send them with their Ministry booklets (if they have arrived);
• There will be no canteen operating so will need to supply their own food/drink;
• They are to attend in full uniform, and all normal school rules apply;
• Buses may not be running;
• Students will not be allowed to congregate at break times and must maintain a distance of at least 2m;
• The school day will run from 9am to 3pm (including Friday's). No students are to leave the grounds during the day, or be onsite outside these times;
• If they have a device please bring to school;
• Under no circumstances can your child meet up with friends before, or after school, nor can friends arrive at school to meet up for lunch etc;
• Your child can not come to school if they are sick (with any symptoms e.g. - runny nose, cough, sore throat etc);
• Students will be “small bubbles” of up to ten students, and will have to maintain the distance rules at all times in class, and during supervised breaks.

The school office remains closed at this time. Phone messages can be left.

If you must have your child(ren) supervised, please email the Principal, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or message the College. We will assume a “non response” means no supervision required.

We need this information urgently so we can organise appropriate staffing.

Yours sincerely,
Gary Yeatman

Term Update - 13 April 2020

Dear Parents/Caregivers

Welcome back to Term Two, which officially starts on Wednesday 15 April. Teachers will be available online from Wednesday 15 April. Please ask students to check their school emails, if possible, for work etc. They can also ask questions of their teachers this way.

Returning to School
The current plan (assuming Level 4 to Level 3) could be the children of essential workers only being allowed back on site on Wednesday 29 April. Please keep in mind this is a very fluid situation. We are likely to know more after the Prime Minister’s announcements scheduled for Thursday 17 April and Monday 20 April.

Devices for Students
As you may have heard, the Ministry of Education (MOE) are issuing devices. Make no mistake MOE are not issuing devices to all students. At the time of writing we have had over 130 requests for devices and the demand will be greater than supply. I am hopeful that all seniors who requested devices will get them. At the time of writing this has not been confirmed. Neither has any timeline.

Work Packs for Juniors
All Year 9 and 10 have had work packs ordered from MOE as it’s unlikely that devices will be issued to junior students. This is to help supplement (not replace) the learning set by us (either online or hardcopy), or if they are not online, give them some meaningful work to complete. At the time of writing no timeline has been supplied.

Work Packs for Seniors
For those students we know don't have devices, either via our survey, contact with staff, or missed out on MOE devices, hard packs will be ordered. This will not be a quick process as I am required to enter every student's details, including subjects, to MOE. At the time of writing no timeline has been supplied.

The College's General Expectations of Teaching Staff after 14 April
• They will not be available every minute, of every day
• They will keep work / instructions simple
• Their focus will be on providing learning opportunities (and possibly electronic meet ups; if possible)
• We can not deliver full 60 minute lessons
• We will not be taking class rolls, monitor engagement, issuing reports etc
• All communication should be through school channels e.g. school email / google classroom etc

Pastoral and Counselling Work
As of Wednesday 15 April, students may contact deans (email addresses below), who will work with Deputy Principal, Mr Nick Reid, (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) to coordinate responses.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Our counsellors will endeavour to continue to work with our students over the period of any school closure. Counsellors may refer families / whanau to seek outside support. Email contact (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), phone (06 356 4817 ext 8846). The use of virtual meeting apps may be used to allow our counsellors to continue to support students and families.

Yours sincerely,
Gary Yeatman