Parent FAQ's

Parent Information Booklet

Contents

Welcome Wairakei Primary School

  • Historical
  • Board of Trustees
  • Parent teacher Association

Staffing

  • Staff

Useful Information

  • Term Dates
    • 2015   Term Dates:
    • Public Holidays

A–Z Information

  • Absences
  • Assemblies
  • Cell Phones
  • Certificates
  • Changes to your normal routine
  • Classroom placement
    • Rationale:
    • Guidelines
  • Community Hall
  • Concerns/Complaints
  • Contacting Staff
  • Cyber Safety
  • Donations
  • Extracurricular Activities
  • Health
    • Medication
    • Dental Health
    • Public Health Nurse/Hearing and Vision
  • Information and Technology (ICT)
    • Rationale
    • Expectations
    • Consequences
  • Learning Support
    • Homework
    • Learning Programmes
    • Reading Recovery
    • Teacher’s Aides
    • Professional Development
  • Library
  • Lost Property
  • Lunches
  • Money
    • What are National Standards?
    • More information
  • Newsletters
  • Sporting Activities
  • Cultural Activities
  • Senior School Camp
  • Swimming
  • Sports Waikato
  • Parent Assistance
  • Pet Day
  • Reporting to Parents
    • Reporting to parents schedule
    • Our Maori and Pacific Island Community
    • Parent Information Evenings
  • Photographer
  • School Uniform
    • Year 1 – 6
  • Snow Alert
  • Adverse weather Procedures
    • Before School:
    • During School Hours:
  • Stationery
  • Student Safety
    • Accident or illness at school:
    • Road Safety
    • Road Wardens
    • Health and Safety
    • Sun Protection
  • Travel
    • Buses
    • Bicycles
    • Parking
  • Valuable Items
  • Visitors Book

Welcome Wairakei Primary School

As a staff we are dedicated to providing a quality education for your child, within the best possible learning environment.  All classrooms are well resourced and the work of our teachers is supported by an excellent backup of administration and support staff.

To support the work of staff we have a spacious library with an information technology suite included, a cultural room which is used for maori, music, drama and other specialist programmes.

Education is not solely the responsibility of the school.  It is a three way partnership between school, home and the student, all of whom must be committed to the task.  Ultimately, most responsibility lies with the child.

Your child is unique.  It is vitally important that you take an interest in what happens at school, try to become involved in events and perhaps help us with special projects we undertake for the benefit of students. Lots of exciting things happen here and your child will get a great deal of pleasure from seeing you at school events.  Parents are encouraged to spend time alongside students at any time.

The information in this booklet includes a summary of the operation of the school, and will hopefully be helpful to you.

Historical

The Wairakei Primary School was originally constructed to serve the children of Wairakei Power Station work force, and was opened on Monday 7 September 1959 as a full primary school with students up to Form 2.  With the opening of the Taupo Intermediate School in 1969, we became a contributing school with students up to Year 6 only.

Board of Trustees

Our school Board of Trustees who are elected or co-opted, are responsible for administering the Ministry of Education by-laws. They are responsible for the maintenance of the school and its equipment and for the allocation and spending of Ministry of Education funds.

The Wairakei Primary School Board of Trustees works hard on your behalf to ensure our staff work in a well resourced and supportive environment which ensures the maximum possible level of high quality education is delivered to all students.

They are always willing and interested to listen to suggestions and help in the betterment of the school, its conditions for students and in Ministry of Education policy matters.

Board members and their contact details available from the school office.  Current Board members are:

Kate Mounsey – Chair, Kate Mounsey,  Andrew Mackintosh, Darryn McClutchie, Roger Garland, Kim Sullivan, Mandy Woodcock, Memory Tangi, Ange Painter (Staff Representative)

http://www.wairakeitaupo.school.nz/about-us/meet-our-board-of-trustees/

Parent teacher Association

This dedicated group of parents/caregivers, liaise between the home and the teachers providing a forum for the exchange of educational ideas and discussing your child’s education.  This group arranges home and school functions, gives assistance in classrooms, organises Pet Day and fundraising activities during the year and provides much help and much equipment for the school.  PTA members and their contact details are available at the school office.

Staffing

All school staff work together as a united group.  For ease of management and administration we operate with a junior team (Y0-Y2) Te Huka and Te Huka Junior, middle school (Y3-Y4) Ohaaki and  senior team (Y4-Y6) Te Mihi.

Visit staff and read their profiles here

Useful Information

It is expected that students will not arrive at school before 8.15am and all students should have left the school grounds by 3.40pm unless they have a good reason for remaining behind (eg sports practice).  Punctuality is expected.  Village students must leave the school grounds immediately after 3.00pm and are permitted to return after the last bus has departed.

Term Dates

There are four terms to the school year.  Term Dates have minor variations from year to year.  Dates are communicated periodically in school newsletters.  The school office can provide you with further information.

Public Holidays

Waitangi Day February

Good Friday March

Easter Monday March/April

Easter Tuesday March/April

Queen’s Birthday June

Labour Day October

A–Z Information

Absences

Parents/Caregivers must ring and advise the school before 9 a.m. if their child is unable to attend school for any reason. A phone call or a note must cover all absences from school. Please request from the principal in writing if children are to be absent for reasons other than sickness.If your child is absent for more than 20 days in succession without explanation, we are required by law to remove them from the school roll. Permission from the principal must be gained before a child can attend an out of school educational provider otherwise the child will be marked truant.

Assemblies

Whole school assemblies are held weekly every Friday  at 9.15a.m. and are led by the children. Achievement Certificates are awarded and success is celebrated. Caregivers and friends of the school are very welcome and encouraged to attend. A POWER assembly will be held every second Monday morning for the children to reinforce our vision.

Cell Phones

It is unlikely that most students will need a cell phone at school. A parent/student agreement form needs to be completed and returned to school. Cell phones are to be turned off and not used at school. The cell phone must be kept in the student’s schoolbag or at the office at all times whilst at school.

Certificates

Certificates are awarded to individual children at assemblies. Certificates reward the efforts of every child in the school and a specific to each child.

Changes to your normal routine

If for any reason your child is going to be late, collected early, picked up by people unknown to our school staff, changes in travel arrangements or any other differences in usual procedure, please let your child’s teacher know so we can support your child if necessary. When it is necessary to uplift your child during school hours please communicate this in advance.

Classroom placement

Rationale:

A school’s primary task is to ensure that all children are experiencing successful outcomes. Placement of students into a new class each year requires careful consideration of the academic, social, physical and emotional development of each and every child, in conjunction with school wide logistics.

Guidelines
  • The Board of Trustees recognises that placement of pupils into classes is the professional task of the principal and teaching staff.

  • Individual student learning needs will be catered for within their age group, however, if it is in the best interests of the child the school will be flexible and allow children to be grouped as per identified need.

  • Parents are invited each year to write to the principal on any specific academic, social or emotional considerations they believe the school should consider prior to placing children in classes for the following year. The school will consider these, however, all final decisions will be determined by the Principal and Leadership team

Community Hall

The school now has a community hall which is used often during school hours for school activities.  The hall is available for hireage from outside groups.  Please contact the school office for information and bookings.

Concerns/Complaints

If parents have any concerns they are to approach the classroom teacher in the first instance to resolve any misunderstandings or have concerns addressed. If there are still concerns please refer to our concerns or complaints policy, a copy of which may be obtained from the school office.

Contacting Staff

If you need to contact staff about non-urgent matters, please do so before or after school or during interval and lunchtime. All staff have a school email address. Please see your classroom teacher for this email. Office staff are available most of the time; however the answerphone is cleared regularly if you need to leave a message.

Cyber Safety

The school has an Acceptable Use of the Internet Policy designed to protect children and prevent the access to undesirable websites. All parents/caregivers are required to sign the WPS School Internet permission form.

Donations

School donations are a vital component of our school budget. Your donations are used to fund extra resources, equipment and opportunities for all students which would not otherwise be possible when prioritizing the allocation of our Operations Grant.

Extracurricular Activities

During the year there are events that are held out of school hours, such as the leavers event, information evenings, etc. It is desirable that parents make themselves available for these events as they are considered to be part of the whole school culture. Advance notice is always provided through the school newsletter and website.

Health

Should your child have some illness or allergy which the school should know about, please ensure that staff are notified. If your child requires medication during the day, please inform the office. Some prescribed medication requires an agreement form signed by the parent.

Medication

It is essential that any child receiving special medication for allergies or chronic medical conditions has medication clearly labeled in the school medical room for emergency use. A form must be completed should you require our staff to give medication. The medication and the completed form must be handed in at the school office. Please ensure that the office staff and your child know of any special conditions or allergies. No medication is to be kept in a student’s bag.

Dental Health

Our school Dental Nurse is based at Taupo Hospital  and can be contacted on 378 9470. The dental team may also bring the dental van to complete dental checks.

Public Health Nurse/Hearing and Vision

The Public Health Nurse and the Hearing and Vision Team role is to follow up the health concerns of children and visit homes when necessary. The Health Nurse may also be involved in some of the health programmes introduced in our school.

Information and Technology (ICT)

Rationale

We believe that the digital technology as an educational tool is extremely important for information gathering and communication. Our goal is to make this accessible to all for material that is considered educational. To gain access to the Internet, students must obtain parental permission and agree to abide by the ICT policy as verified by Board of Trustees.

Expectations

While every effort will be made to supervise Internet use there may be times when restrictions will need to be in place. Students will be given guidelines on how to access required information; however the school cannot accept liability for children who do not follow the set procedures. The school will not be held responsible for any damage users suffer, including loss of data, nor for the accuracy or suitability of information found.

Students will be responsible for good behaviour on the school’s computer network and the Internet just as they are in a classroom or on the school playground.

When students are online they are representing the school therefore the school’s high standard of behaviour is expected to be upheld.

  • Never publicise your home address or phone number

  • Do not use obscene, abusive or harassing language

Consequences

Access is a privilege not a right. This implies responsibility and the privilege will be revoked if abused.

Failure to maintain responsible and good behaviour will result in the removal of the privilege for a specified period. Users should not expect that files stored on school computers will always be private; electronic messages and files may be reviewed by staff to ensure that the procedures are being adhered to.

Learning Support

Homework

Each team decides on it homework expectations and informs parents at the beginning of each year. Please encourage your child to make an independent effort with homework and hand it in, through praise and encouragement.

Learning Programmes

The key focus for learning takes place in classrooms where children work individually, in groups and as a whole class. While our classes are multi-level, teachers cater for individual needs through regular assessment across the curriculum, planning teaching and learning experiences that enable each child to work at their own level.

Reading Recovery

A number of six-year-old children receive a specialist reading recovery programme, working one-to-one with a reading recovery tutor for approximately 20 weeks.

Teacher’s Aides

Where possible a Teacher’s Aide is employed to support classroom programmes and work with individuals and groups of children.

Professional Development

To ensure quality-learning programmes, it is important that staff continually reflect, inform and improve their practice. Our teachers are involved in individual and collective professional development. Relief teachers areemployed in classrooms to allow teachers to attend courses or have non-contact time to prepare for the implementation of new ideas.

Library

Our School Library has a good range of books suitable for all students. If you encourage your child to bring library books home to read on most days, you will help your child to become a more proficient reader. Should a damaged book turn up at home ask your child to draw the teacher’s attention to it. We have the appropriate materials at school to do repairs. Home repairs (especially with sellotape) are often harmful.

Home care of books hardly needs mention, but an aspect that is often overlooked is that of younger children in the family. Occasionally we do get caption and other Junior books back with food on them, or scribbled on, etc. This leaves us the difficult task of presenting reading, as an attractive activity. We ask for care please.

Lost Property

We regularly collect a large quantity of lost property. You are welcome to come and look through the lost property for missing clothing. This box is kept in the caretakers shed. It is essential that all school uniforms are named.

Lunches

It is essential that all children have a healthy morning tea and lunch. Sometimes some children have more than they can eat, but the duty teacher monitors that all children have eaten part of their lunch. Lollies and such like are not permitted.

Money

When children bring money or cheques to school for payment of any kind, please send it in a sealed envelope with the child’s name, room number and the reason for the money clearly labelled on the outside of the envelope. This envelope should then be given to the class teacher.

National Standards

What are National Standards?

All schools with children in Years 1 - 8 will be using National Standards in reading, writing and mathematics. The standards are a description of what all New Zealand children are expected to achieve in reading, writing and maths in Years 1 - 8.

The standards give teachers, your child, and you as parents, a clear idea of where your child is at in reading, writing and maths. Teachers and students plan the ‘next steps’ needed in their learning as well as explain how you can help at home.

More information

For more detailed information about the National Standards:

  • Talk to your child’s teacher

  • Visit the Ministry of Education website and click the National Standards link - www.minedu.govt.nz/Parents

  • Read the Standards - www.nzcurriculum.tki.org.nz/National-Standards

Newsletters

School newsletters are emailed each Tuesday. The newsletter is our most important communication link as it keeps families informed about upcoming school events, children’s successes and any concerns we have. It is very important that parents check their email. Alternatively check our web page www.wairakeitaupo.school.nz as the newsletter will be loaded on it each week.

Sporting Activities

Students have opportunities to participate in a wide range of sporting activities. All have involvement regularly as part of the Physical Education and Sports programme. There are additional opportunities for students wishing to become involved in after-school activities throughout the year.

In past years the following were offered at various different times: cricket, rugby, netball, soccer, hockey, basketball, volleyball, cross country, athletics, golf, touch rugby and swimming safety, with many outside competitions available e.g. triathlon, mountain biking, cycling.

It is anticipated that a similar range of sporting activities will again be available in the future and that as many students as is possible can be given opportunities to participate in the sports of their choice.

Cultural Activities

Students have many opportunities to become involved in a wide range of activities. Much is done as part of the normal school programme. Students who wish may become involved in more specialised groups.We have a music  group  which performs each year at our local music festival.

Other cultural and dramatic groups operate throughout the year depending upon student interest and teacher strengths.

Senior School Camp

Year 5 & 6 will attend an overnight school camp during the year. Details will be provided to parents outlining the camp details and cost prior to the camp. Other year groups may attend overnight camp with  approval from the Board of Trustees.

Swimming

The AC Baths pool is used for teaching class swimming. Children travel to the swimming pool in buses. each child will receive 2 weeks of full instruction from a trained swimming instructor. There is a small cost for the bus travel attached to the school activity fee at the beginning of the year

Sports Waikato

All our students benefit from belonging to this association that caters for sporting and other extra curricular activities for local country schools. Senior pupils participate in a range of sporting activities competing against other schools. In some codes children from individual schools are selected as members of representative team to compete in regional finals.

Parent Assistance

We welcome parent involvement in the classroom and team programmes throughout the school as we see this as a valuable link between the home and school for parents and children alike. If you are available to assist in any way please see your child’s teacher, or the team leaders concerned.  The school is very grateful to parents who provide assistance to the school in a variety of ways. These include:

  • Classroom Assistant – working alongside classroom teachers and students in the class.

  • Library Assistance – This involves repairs and maintenance of books and library equipment, assisting students with library skills, choice of books and reading to groups.

  • Working Bees – Parents working at making equipment, charts, poem cards, large books, mathematics equipment and other interesting projects are part of this scheme.

  • Transporting Students – from time to time students may go on field trips or to sporting or musical events. Parents are invited to assist with these important activities.

  • Skills – You may have a particular skill or expertise in an area and wish to share this with us. Please do let us know, we value your contribution.

Pet Day

This is an integral part of our school, contributing to the special character of our rural school, and is usually held in October. It is an event all children are expected to participate in all the associated learning activities.

In the term prior to Pet Day, all students undertake an integrated theme study. The curriculum studies are carefully planned to ensure that the children are engaged in different learning experiences each year, thus building on prior knowledge and challenging them further.

Information material for Pet Day is available from the school office.

Photographer

Each year, a photographer visits to take individual, class and group/team photographs. Parents will be advised of these times.

Reporting to Parents

Teachers are always happy to talk to parents and caregivers about their child’s progress. Please be aware that before and after school times are busy times for teachers, and sometimes you may need to make an appointment. All teachers have an email contact address if this is a more convenient method of communication.

Reporting to parents schedule

Term One

  • Parent Information Evening (February)
  • Goal setting meeting (March)

Term Two

  • Written Report National Standards (June)

Term Three

  • Parent teacher meetings. (August)

Term Four

  • Written Report National Standards (December)
Our Maori and Pacific Island Community

In line with Ministry guidelines we report to the parents/caregivers of Maori and Pacific Island children on improving achievement for Maori and Pacific Island pupils.

Parent Information Evenings

From time to time we will hold parent information evenings to inform/consult with parents. Open days are also scheduled throughout the year.

School Uniform

Year 1 – 6
  • Navy Blue with gold trim polo shirt

  • Navy long sleeved polar fleece

  • School Hoodie

  • Navy bucket hat

Snow Alert

During the winter months should children have to be sent home early because of heavy snow, parents of bus children will be notified through the procedures that are organized by the bus controller.

Adverse weather Procedures

Before School:
  • Drivers/operators will arrange a system to gather information about their routes and make recommendations to the bus controller.

  • Their decision will be to: - run as usual, delay the bus or cancel the bus for the day.

  • This decision is relayed to Taupo Nui–a–Tia College bus controller who will liaise with the other schools (and radio stations if necessary) with the decision and the information.

  • The bus controller will activate the route phone tree if necessary to pass on the decision.

  • Or you will be notified by our website system

During School Hours:
  • Route concerns are relayed to the driver/operator in the first instance, then the bus controller.

  • The driver operator will contact the controller with a recommendation urgently.

  • When a decision is made the controller will inform the Taupo Nui–a–Tia College bus controller who will liaise with the other schools (and radio stations if necessary) with the decision and information.

  • We will phone all parents of School bus children.

  • Students can only be sent home early if contact has been made with the family (or their nominated alternative) concerned. Note – Principals are not permitted by law to send pupils home during normal school hours without notifying the caregivers. Therefore it is essential that all families make an arrangement, which the schools know about, if the family is unable to be contacted.

  • Buses shall not leave from this school until authority has been given by the principal or a nominated substitute should the principal not be present.

If no phone calls or TXT’s are received at home the buses will run as usual.  Please do not overload the phone system.

Stationery

A stationery list will be sent home with the school report at the end of the year. Lists are available on our web page. Stationery needs to be purchased, named and brought to the school ready for the first day of the school year.

For more information please contact the office.

Student Safety

Accident or illness at school:

If your child suffers an accident or becomes unwell while at school you will be informed promptly with a request to collect your child. You may collect your child from the sick bay in the office block. If we are unable to contact you or the backup person and medical help is required, the School will make the necessary arrangements with the local Doctor, and continue to try to contact you as soon as possible. It is not the responsibility of School Staff to administer medication at school, however if there is a need for this on a short term basis please contact the office. Caregivers will be contacted if there has been a head injury.

Road Safety

All parents and children are required to use the crossing outside the school whenever crossing the road. At 3p.m. there is a patrolled crossing supervised by a teacher, which everyone crossing must use.

There is a 40km speed limit in place outside the school from 8.45am to 9.15am and 2:45pm to 3:15pm on school days.

Road Wardens

Selected Year 6 students are rostered on to man the school crossing at 2.55 – 3.10pm daily.  Staff supervise the procedure after school.  The students are trained by the Police Education Officer.  All users of the crossing wait behind the marked lines on the footpath until wardens tell them they may cross.

Health and Safety

In the interest of health and safety we request that the following items not be brought to school: glass containers, knives, sweets, chewing gum, fizzy drinks, jewellery, toys, money, perfumes, deodorants,  make-up, matches/lighters, spray cans, mock guns

Sun Protection

All students are required to wear a suitable sunhat during the hours of 11:00am and 3:00pm during Term 1 and 4. The hat must have a wide brim that shades the ears, face and back of the neck. The Board have a “Sun Safe” policy and provide shaded playing areas as part of our property development plans.

Travel

Buses

There are 5 bus routes which service our school. Please contact the school office to check if your child is eligible to travel on the bus as the buses are only for the children who live on the bus route – no ‘extras’ will be allowed on the bus. The children on the buses are looked after by our bus wardens who are trained by our Bus Coordinator. To ensure our children’s safety, cars are not to be parked in the bus bays between 8:30a.m. and 9:15a.m or between 2:30p.m. and 3:45p.m.

Details of the bus routes can be found on our school website. http://www.wairakeitaupo.school.nz/at-school/buses/

Bicycles

Bicycles may be ridden to school by children who have parental permission, providing the bike is road worthy and the cyclist is wearing a correctly fitting helmet. Bicycles are stored in a bike rack during school hours and are not to be ridden in the school grounds.

Parking

Due to limited parking and for safety reasons, we ask that all parents park outside the school grounds when visiting the school. We remind you that the Bus Bay needs to be kept clear between 8:30a.m. and 9:15a.m. and 2:30p.m. and 3:45p.m. Parents who park across the road from the school are strongly urged to escort their child across the road using the crossing provided, rather than letting them cross themselves. The staff car park is reserved for staff.

Valuable Items

These are best left at home in case they get broken or go missing. While we try to ensure the safety of such items we cannot be responsible for them. Money should not be brought to school unless specifically required for school.

Visitors Book

For emergency and security reasons, any visitors to the school need to sign ‘in and out’ of the visitor’s book which is held in the school office.