17th December 2009

Wednesday 17 December 2009 Volume 22

Naumai e te whanau o te kura Muritai
Tena koutou katoa

Dear Parents / Caregivers

A reminder that school finishes this Friday at 1.00pm. For those children who usually catch the bus home, the bus will be leaving just after 1 o’clock tomorrow.

The first day for next year is Wednesday 3rd February. Welcome powhiri is at 10.00 on this day.

Term dates for 2010
Term 1 – Wednesday 3rd February to Thursday 1st April
Term 2 – Monday 19th April to Friday 2nd July
Term 3 – Monday 19th July to Friday 24th September
Term 4 – Monday 11th October to Friday 17th December

Farewell to our Year 8 students.
Last night we had a special celebration for our year 8 students and their parents. It was a lovely occasion full of glitz and glamour and the sharing of happy memories. We wish our year 8 students every success as they go onto high school next year. Many families have their last child leaving Muritai School and we say goodbye after many years association with the school. We thank them for their contribution and loyalty to the school. Tomorrow we have a leaver’s assembly at 11.00 in the school. All the students who we will farewell tomorrow have contributed to our culture at Muritai School. Our leavers have many diverse qualities and strengths but above all, they should feel that they have tried to be the best that they can be and leave with an appreciation for their peers, their teachers, their school and themselves. We congratulate them and thank them, and their parents, for the contribution they have made to Muritai and wish them all the best for the road ahead.

Prize giving Awards At last night’s prize giving the following cups and certificates were awarded -
Certificates for contribution – Anais Schanzel, Ruth Meo, Michael Cook, Ina Malama, Billie Bishop-Ash, Samantha Gorham, Yorik Janssen, Tim McCafferty, Ashley Sisson, Dante Tilley,
Abel Tasman Cup – Callum Gray and Chris Gaskell
Improvement in year 8 award – Jazz Kane and Franziska Plimmer
Board of Trustees Cups for Endeavour– Ellen Sullivan and Rupert O’Brien
Board of Trustees Cups for academic excellence – Holly Moore and Marcus Noakes
Jacobson Cups for mathematics – Sam Pajo and Holly Moore
Debbie Bertaud-Gandar Memorial Cup for Commitment to Science and Technology – George Brathwaite
Swain Cup for leadership and contribution in sport – Keoghan Harrison
Beck Family Cup for best all round sportsperson – Lucy Stotter and Sam Brandwood
Mills Family Cup for contribution to arts – Max Wollerman
Stotter Cup for dedication and commitment – Angelique Cotogni
Clarke Cup for “Positive contribution to Muritai School” – Samantha Mason
Newton Family Cup service to Muritai School – Jazz Kane
Class of 61Cup - “Outstanding Contribution to Muritai School” – Ned Grenfell
Booth Family Cup ~ “The Student’s Student” – Lewis Wiggins

Year 8 Trip to Abel Tasman
The year 8 students had a marvellous time in the Abel Tasman National Park and successfully survived their week away. Stephen Eames, Raihania Chadwick, Carole Lowe, Sandra Blair and Chris Galvin reported a wonderful week’s experience and praised the children who were both energetic and outstanding, both in accepting the challenge of the expedition and in their behaviour. A huge thanks to those parents who gave up their time to spend a week with their children and allow them the opportunity to enjoy the experience.

Touch Rugby
Another solid season for our touch rugby teams with a number of placings. Finals results – Muritai Sushi (year 5/6 boys) - 2nd place overall Muritai Lizards (year 3/4 boys) - 5th place overall Muritai Small Blacks (year 6 girls) - 6th place overall
Muritai Fairies (year 5/6 girls) - 2nd overall Muritai Bears (year 3/4 mixed) - 3rd place overall Muritai Speeders (year 7/8 mixed) - 4th place overall Muritai year 7/8 mixed - 1st overall

This is the final newsletter for 2009 and I take this opportunity to thank the children, staff and the Muritai community for what has been another very successful year.

Through the regular newsletters and blogs parents will have gained an impression of school-life throughout 2009. The newsletters has been available by e-mail, the website and through the school office. We have used email this year as the main process to communicate with the school. School-life is always “full on” and the website certainly captures the moments of the many activities and exciting events your children have been involved in. Parents who have been keeping track of the school’s webpage www.muritai.school.nz will also have gained an understanding of the beliefs, values and curriculum focus
areas the school has promoted throughout the year. Through the newsletters, celebration assemblies, performances, and the school’s website the school has celebrated and recognized the many successes of our children who have achieved in a variety of academic, sporting and cultural activities. The positive celebration of our successes throughout 2009 reflects the school’s vision statement “be the best that we can be”. It is certainly a pleasure to say “thank you” to the large group of parents who regularly support the school and who have been actively involved throughout the year.

The children have been showing signs of excitement as they share their anticipation of what Christmas will mean to them. The Christmas season is indeed one of excitement and joy for them as they begin to dream about everything that sparkles and of course the gifts that are shared by families and friends!

Christmas means many different things to each of us and our preparations take many paths as we reflect on our own personal understanding of Christmas and anticipate visitor arrivals, plan summer beach holidays or simply look forward to relaxing and enjoying time with our families.

Many families are leaving the school as they move on to different schools. Thank you for your support and commitment to Muritai and best wishes for the future.

We farewell Amber Campbell tomorrow. Amber started the second new entrant class in April and has done a superb job settling in these children and getting them started on their learning journey. All the very best Amber and thank you for your contribution. Thank you to Margs Mills-Smith who started the term 4 new entrant class and returns back to her part-time teaching role in 2010. Safe travels to Barbara Ryan who takes up her 6-month science fellowship with the Royal Society at the beginning of next year and will return in term 3.

From me on a personal level, I have enjoyed my sabbatical experience and enjoyed seeing the school do so well under Matt Skilton’s leadership. A huge thank you to Carole and Sue at the front office and to the senior management team, teaching staff, support staff and after school care staff – thank you for your contribution. Our children are very lucky to have such a great team working with them. To all, the best for your future travels beyond Muritai.

To the Board of Trustees and Home and School – two magical groups who have worked so hard as the guardians of the school. You have a huge job, with many responsibilities, and you have had another successful year. We are blessed to have such a supportive team that enables so many opportunities and developments to come to fruition, at our side. To Lisa Langley, Lillian Martin and Steve Bielby stepping down from their leadership of these groups – thank you for your dedication and service to the school.

All the staff joins with me in wishing you all a very happy and safe Christmas with family and friends. Enjoy spending time with your children.

Kindest regards and Mere Kihirimete
Andrew Bird Principal/ Tumuaki

2nd December 2009

Volume 21

Naumai e te whanau o te kura Muritai
Tena koutou katoa

Dear Parents / Caregivers

Welcome to our new students and their families – Luke Thompson and Sam McRobbie in Room 16.

As the school year draws to a close, upon reflection we need to take heart that much has been achieved and a well-earned break isn’t too far away. The classes have some wonderful experiences planned for their outdoor education experiences and we thank the many parents who will be involved with supervision support. School life over the last few weeks has been busy. It has been about achieving Green Gold Enviroschool status, achievement reporting, completing curriculum goals, preparing EOTC weeks, athletics, the year 8 leaving ceremony, strategic planning for 2010 and of course the important task of setting class placements for 2010. The school’s 2009 overall student achievement report that is presented to the board, the community and to the Ministry of Education, through its Annual Report procedure, is an impressive read and will be posted on the school’s website shortly. Student achievement data collected across the school over 2009 indicates and affirms that the school is high performing in terms of its curriculum delivery.

Of particular interest to us is the performance level of our year 8 classes as that really can provide a picture of the child’s learning journey during their 8 years of schooling at Muritai. Indicators provide good evidence that these children achieved well in advance of the national norms for literacy and numeracy. Our Year 8 children and some Year 6 children will be moving on to high school and intermediate schooling respectively next year and will be leaving Muritai, well placed for the challenges ahead. For the majority, this school has been their main learning world for the past eight years. I am confident that they will look back in years ahead with fond memories of the experiences that made a big difference to their learning pathway. The arts, the drama, the sports and the cultural activities, along with the everyday learning in the basic curriculum areas have all contributed to the learning package they have enjoyed and will take with them. The children have also been involved in many added activities that have provided some very specialised and exciting learning opportunities. It is always interesting to hear how our children do at secondary school and this year we are thrilled to have, for the second year in a row, an ex Muritai student as Dux of Hutt Valley High School. Congratulations Erika Webb! Further accolades are listed below.

At this time staffing and class placement arrangements for 2010 have been confirmed. We ask parents to refrain from making recommendations for teacher choice. This needs to remain the responsibility of the senior management team in consultation with current classroom teachers, as there are many variables relating to the teaching and learning needs of every child that require careful consideration when making placement decisions. Tomorrow I will follow this newsletter up with information about how the school is structured for 2010.

E noho ra
Andrew Bird

Hutt Valley High School prize-giving.
Erika Webb - Dux
Alex Johnson - Deputy Head Girl
Leole Malama - Cultural Captain and scholarship winner for service to school and community
Alice Meads – First in French and Maori
Sam McCafferty – First in Art Design.

Zone Athletics Sports
Well done to the Muritai students who performed admirably at the zone athletic sports at the Hutt Rec last week. The following students have been selected to represent the zone at the inter-zone. Muritai ran the event so congratulations also to Peter Hull, Vanessa MacPherson and Matt Skilton for their hard work.
Long jump - Frankie Middleton, Jared Baines, Levi Walton
High jump – Isaac Miller-Jose, Clara Lafont, Lea Fetting
Shot put – Ruby Burley-Smith
Discus – Maya Hahn, Xavier Manson, Celine Malama, Levi Walton
Vortex – Maya Hahn, Hilary Sheridan, Xavier Manson, Harrison Swift
Sprints – Monica Sullivan, McLeod Harrison
Relay – Year 6 boys – McLeod Harrison, Levi Walton, Liam Brandwood, Isaac Miller-Jose

Every Monday, Tuesday and Friday morning, a dedicated squad of Year 5 and 6 Jump Jam leaders run our Junior Fitness sessions in the hall. They have once again done a tremendous job and are seen as ‘Fitness Role Models’ by our Junior children.
Our Jump Jam Leaders this year are: Holly Cumming, Hazel Sisson, Meg Sykes, Elspeth Morley, Matty Goble, Xanthe Winfield, John Woodnorth, Hailey Griffiths and Sophie Wake.

Not only have the Jump Jam Leaders instructed and demonstrated routines, they have also competed in Nationwide Competitions with other schools throughout New Zealand. In Term 2 the whole squad competed in the Jump Jam Challenge and were placed 64th out of 90 schools. A great achievement as it’s only the second time we have entered!

At the end of Term 3 Holly Cumming and Meg Sykes entered the Jump Jam Idol competition in which they had to perform their chosen Jump Jam routine on their own. They both did extremely well and were placed 13th and 26th respectively, out of 56 Year 4-6 girls!

The Jump Jam squad have also attended leadership workshops this year to help fine tune their aerobic skills, learn new routines and to further develop their leadership skills. Thank you so much Jump Jam leaders for your enthusiasm, skills and dedication – we couldn’t do it without you all! Mrs Skilton

The year 7 and 8 children were involved in a narrative writing competition at the end of Term 3. These stories were judged by Author Alan Bagnall. Alan commented on the incredibly diverse stories and the high quality, powerful writing style of all of the entries. Congratulations to Samantha Mason who was placed first, Marcus Noakes, second and Rupert O’Brien third. Sofija Cvitanovich was highly commended and Dante Tilley received the People’s Choice award. Well done to all the children who entered the competition.

We would like to say a huge THANK YOU to Leo Sullivan of Pak N Save Petone who has supported and contributed to the school over many years. This year Leo donated the meat for our hangi and gave the school discounts on all the groceries for the Abel
Tasman trip. We really do appreciate his generosity.

School Diary – Muritai School – Term 4 2009

3rd Y5/6 National Theatre for children
4th Assembly 1.30pm
4th Y5/6 Trip to Te Papa and Capital E
7th Y8 in Abel Tasman all week
7th Y5/6 Trip to Te Papa and Capital E
8th Y4/6 Interzone Athletics at Petone Rec
10th Y3/4 EOTC week begins
10th Y0/2 Christmas Concert

11th Y8’s back from Abel Tasman
11th Reports, Portfolios, class lists and
stationery lists go hom
14th Y3/4 Capital E
15th Y3/4 EOTC week ends
15th BOT meeting 7pm in staff room
16th Y8 Formal Dinner
17th Y3/5 Christmas concert
18th Leavers Assembly
LAST DAY OF TERM – Early Finish


Eastbourne Community Carols and BBQ 5pm Sunday 13 December at Muritai School. Special Guests – The Titan Hutt City Brass
Band. Bought to you by the Eastbourne Churches. Everyone Welcome

BirdCards sells a fantastic range of Christmas cards, advent calendars, Christmas wrapping paper, gift ideas and much more. BirdCards is open Friday 4 December from 10am -12 pm and Sunday 6 December from 2-4pm or by appointment - phone Jan on 562-0199. We are at 336 Muritai Rd.

Christmas Trees
Take the hassle out of sourcing your Christmas Tree this year and call Steve from the Eastbourne Scouts - 562 6270. Trees available fresh on Saturday 5th and 12th. $20 per tree, $25 delivered in Eastbourne, collection and disposal in January $30. Merry Christmas from the Jamboree fundraising team at the Eastbourne Scout Group.

Eastbourne Games 2010 - Book your place now!
The Eastbourne Games, a two yearly community event between the 7 local bays, is to be next held on Sunday March 21st 2010. We plan to make it bigger this time with over 20 games planned including football, running races, possum throwing, ready-steady-cook, tug-a-war, triathlon, super quiz, a yacht regatta, the odd mystery event and much more. Places in your bay are limited so families are encouraged to get in early or risk missing out. Some games sell fast and are first in first served only - $5 / child and $10 / adult. Bookings can be made via your team captain or go to http://www.huttcity.com/games for more information:

Pt Howard Team Julie Batchelor - ph 568 9007
Lowry Bay Team Trish Perrins - ph 5769099
York Bay Team Peter Wyllie - ph 568 3226
Mahina Bay Team Steve Wilson - ph 5627570
Days Bay Team Becky Grenfell - ph 562 0166
Rona Bay Team Lisa Harkin - ph 5628800
Muritai Team Wendy Manson - ph 562 8287