Te Kura o Tihiōtonga

Otonga Primary School

FOUR WINDS NEWS - 5th June 2024


Kia ora Koutou - Dear Parents and Caregivers

Education Review Office (ERO) Visit

It has been a pleasure working with our evaluation partner from the Education Review Office (ERO) over the last two days. We are very proud of our staff and students.

We have showcased the hard work that we have been doing over the last nearly 5 years in improving engagement, learning and all other areas at Te Kura o Tihiōtonga.

We look forward to receiving our reports from the visit in a few weeks time.

More info about ERO Evaluation here: https://ero.govt.nz/how-ero-reviews/schoolskura-english-medium

Alert Parents - Red Crossings

Please chat to your children about road crossings. The solid red ones are not pedestrian crossings. Be careful especially by the Springfield/Otonga Rd roundabout at the dairy and the one near the golf course Old Taupo/Springfield Rd. Some of our students nearly got run over this morning for not stopping. Pedestrian crossings are indicated with a black/white stripe orange lollipop pole and painted either red/white stripes or black/white stripes on the road.

PacT Progress Reports

The PaCT (Progress and Consistency Tool) is a tool designed to help teachers make dependable overall teacher judgements about students' achievement that can be used to track progress in Reading, Writing, and Mathematics.

These complement Otonga Progress Plans and Learning Evidence on Seesaw.

Most students will receive a PaCT Progress Report for Reading, Writing and Maths at Mid and End of Year. Some students (mainly in Year 0/1) will not receive PaCT reports and their judgements on some of the aspects have not been confirmed. Remember that the NZ Curriculum allows 2 years for students to settle into school and 2 years per level.
If you have any further questions about reporting contact your child’s teacher or see this link on our website:
Real-time Reporting on Progress and Achievement - Otonga Road Primary School

Reading Your Child’s End of Year PaCT Curriculum Progress Reports
The student progress reports provide comprehensive information about a student's achievement and progress in relation to the NZ Curriculum that is useful for conversations about student learning.

The diagrams and information below will help you to read these reports and gain an understanding of the NZ Curriculum level your child is working at in these areas. The aspect graphs show you the next steps in that aspect.
parent-whānau-report (education.govt.nz)

Here is an example of a Maths report and how to read it:

Otonga Progress Plans (OPPs)

We use Progress Plans during the ‘Know Me Before you Teach Me’ and OPP meetings. Conversations with students and whānau around learning informs the OPP. These are shared on Google Docs (through a link in Seesaw) as a reporting to parents tool and completed during the discussion. They are available throughout the year. Progress Plans focus on School Values, Dispositions, aspirations for the student, goal setting, progress according to learning progressions and attendance.
We use ‘SMART’ goals based on the Learning Progressions Frameworks (LPFs) and an indication of whether or not they have been achieved, along with new goals to be achieved.

The plans also have a section on how to help at home. For these to work, we require collaboration with students, parents and teachers. We value this home-school partnership as it fosters and enhances learning progress and achievement.
Kind regards
Mr Gareth Cunliffe

Otonga School DISCO

The school disco planned for this term has been cancelled. It will happen at a later stage.

Protect against MEASLES

Just a reminder to be vigilant in the face of an increased risk of measles around the motu. Keep registers up to date and remember the best protection against measles is two doses of the MMR vaccine.

Check your immunisation register:
Measles information – Ministry of Education

Find out if you need a measles vaccination – Te Whatu Ora

Te Whatu Ora has more information on measles on its website:

Measles – Te Whatu Ora

Whittaker's Chocolate Fundraiser

All money and unsold chocolates are now due back at school, please return these as soon a possible! Thank you.

Otonga Teams - CBOP Cross Country 11th June 2024


We will be holding Otonga Progress Plans and 3-Way Goal Setting Meetings with you and your child on:
  • Wednesday 12th June 3:30-6:45pm - last booking at 6:30pm
  • Thursday 13th June 3:30-5:30pm - last booking at 5:15pm
  • Tuesday 18th June 3:30-6:45pm - last booking at 6:30pm
Please log in at https://www.schoolinterviews.co.nz/code/mtj6t to book your interview or scan the QR code.


On Monday 17th June we will be participating in Jumping June. A skipping event that will help get kids moving and raising funds for an incredible cause! Proceeds raised in Jumping June will support the Heart Foundation in their goal to help everyone in New Zealand keep their hearts fit for life. On top of this each child that raises above $10 will receive an awesome prize. The more raised the more awesome the prize. A letter went home with a sponsor booklet. Everything is done online and there is no cash involved, sponsors can come from all over the world! Details of how to sign up are in the booklet. The letter sent home also explains the event in more detail. Please sign in at https://www.jumpingjune.co.nz/ and create a student profile.The sign up is open now!



Term 2, Week 6 - Ako Kererū (Year 4)

Celebrating Pink Shirt Day and spreading kindness throughout Te Kura o Tihiōtonga

Pink Shirt Day:
Ako Kererū has been exploring the origin of Pink Shirt Day and how by celebrating it we are sending a message of support to anyone who has been impacted by bullying. Through Ako wide play our ākonga chose to further explore Pink Shirt Day and being an upstander through socio-dramatic (dress-up play), creating puppets and then acting out anti-bullying skits with them, designing t-shirts with messages promoting kindness, crafting our own version of anti-bullying clothing by using recycled fabric scraps and creating Lego pink shirts! (Some of our puppets even joined the class and did some work!)
Creating our Kindness Shirts:
After Pink Shirt Day had passed we were wondering how we could continue the positivity and supportiveness we learnt about. So, we thought of slogans and designs that would promote kindness and anti-bullying messages. To make our kindness shirts as awesome as we did, we had to first design different patterns or shapes and write slogans on a mini paper-prototype. When we were happy with our design, we had to put on our mathematical thinking hats to use proportional thinking and enlargement skills to transfer our epic designs onto real t-shirts. We wore these to Hui-a-Kura last Friday with the hopes to share the kindness and manaakitanga that we experienced in our Ako, with the whole kura!
Mīharo tuhituhi - Amazing writing:
Our tamariki were amazed by the Southern Lights a few weeks ago, what a magnificent wonder! We put our descriptive language skills to use and wrote some beautiful pieces describing the Aurora Australis. This phenomenon piqued our curiosity and has sparked a lot of wonderings around space. Next week we will begin exploring planet earth, the moon, our place in the solar system and everything in between!

Library and Information Centre News


Issue 4 brochures have been circulated to classrooms and orders close on Thursday 13th June.
On-line Ordering: All information for Parents/Caregivers is on the Scholastic website www.scholastic.co.nz All Classrooms are registered for Loop on-line ordering. N.B. Room 9 parents must select Room 9 if ordering online there is not a Room 4 option. You can also choose to order a gift (please mark this clearly on the order form) and if ordering on-line, select 'Library gift for child' parents will be contacted when the gift arrives.

Payment: Parents can also order and pay at school (cash or EFTPOS accepted).

Order Form: Please complete the paper order form on the back page - remember to write in your Child's Name, Room Number and the Item No.

Items purchased through Scholastic Book Club earn the school reward points that are used to purchase further resources.Thank you for your participation and support.

Coming Event - Perform Education Music Show!

Celebrating Aotearoa Book Week in Schools 2024, the educational and interactive musical adventure Way too Cool! is coming to our school on Monday 10th June! Featuring a selection of the best New Zealand children's books, students will be immersed into the storytelling and an engaging, original narrative filled with music, adventure and intrigue!
Mrs Pauline Atkinson, Library Manager

Angela Rawson Visits Te Kura o Tihiōtonga

On Friday Room 15 went on a Litter Walk around Jackson Park with Angela Rawson, an ex-Otonga School pupil who is competing in the Miss Earth, Miss NZ competition. The children were very excited to have someone so enthusiastic to talk about the importance of looking after our planet. It was great to see that there is actually less litter in the park than when she was here as a pupil, around ten years ago. The children really enjoyed the experience.

BOT Parent By-election Update

Nominations for the BOT parent representative by-election closed at 12 noon on Tuesday 14th May.
We received 6 valid nominations, as follows:
Joseph Te Horowai Brown, Sebastian George Jew, Kathryn McMurdo, Mikail Steens, Jacobus Lukas Marthinus Meyer and Catherine Monkhouse.

As there are more nominations than places available on the board, we will be holding a voting by-election.
Voting papers were posted out to all eligible voters on Tuesday 21st May.

Voting papers need to be completed and returned to school by 4pm on by-election day, being Tuesday 18th June.

Please ensure your voting paper is returned in the envelope provided.

Please note voting papers cannot be returned via email or fax. Voting papers can be returned by post or hand delivered to the school, by yourself, your child, a whanau member or friend. Voting papers can be placed in the green ballot box which will be located at the school office/reception area.

First Credit Union - KIDS FIRST Newsletter

The KidsFirst newsletter is back! and it is packed with tips/information to help whanau achieve their financial goals and this term there is a Matariki themed colouring competition where the kids can WIN one of 5 x $20 Warehouse Gift Cards.

Please click on the
link to view a pdf of this newsletter.

Term 2 Diary

(Please note: dates/events may be added or changed without prior notice)
29 May Tackle 5's
29 May Otonga PTA Meeting 6-7pm Staffroom
30 May Ako Karerea - Waimangu Valley Trip
3 Jun King's Birthday - Public Holiday - SCHOOL CLOSED
7 Jun Hui-a-Kura - Hosted by Rm 17
7 Jun PaCT data shared on Seesaw
10 Jun Perform Education - Musicals 9:15am - 12:15pm
11 Jun Central BOP Cross Country
11 Jun International Day of Play
12 Jun Otonga Progress Plans (OPP) Meetings
13 Jun Otonga Progress Plans (OPP) Meetings
14 Jun Hui-a-Kura - Hosted by Rm 13
17 Jun Jumping June Event
18 Jun Otonga Progress Plans (OPP) Meetings
21 Jun Hui-a-Kura - Hosted by Rm 18
24 Jun Ako Tui & Ako Korimako - Tangatarua Marae visit
25 Jun Ako Kiwi & Ako Ruru - Tangatarua Marae visit
25 Jun BOP Cross Country
25 Jun BOT Meeting 6pm
26 Jun Ako Kererū & Ako Kārearea - Tangatarua Marae visit
27 Jun Matariki Celebration Day
28 Jun Matariki Day - Public Holiday - SCHOOL CLOSED
5 Jul Hui-a-Kura - Hosted by Rm 19
5 Jul Last Day of Term 2 – School closes at 3pm

Term Dates 2024

TERM 2: Mon 29th April – Fri 5th July
(Rotorua Central Kahui Ako Teacher Only Day – Mon 27th May - School Closed)
(King’s Birthday Holiday - Mon 3rd June)
(Matariki Holiday - Fri 28th June)

TERM 3: Mon 22nd July – Fri 27th September

TERM 4: Mon 14th October – Fri 13th December (TBC)
(Labour Day – Mon 28th October)



Students may only come to school at 8:15am please as any time before that creates a health and safety issue as there are no teachers available before this time unless in exceptional circumstances. Children will not be allowed into the classrooms until after 8:15am. Students arriving early need to be enrolled in before school care. If you need care before school or after school, this service is provided in the hall. To enrol your child or for more information please contact Leandri on 027 348 7707 or email info.otonga@osprograms.co.nz


If you would like to view our BOT Minutes, please contact Antonia Magness our BOT Secretary via amagness@otonga.school.nz.

By-election to be held

In the coming weeks we will be conducting a by-election for two parent representatives on the Otonga Board of Trustees. The calendar of events for this is below:

Building Works in Room 9 and 10

As we are having building works in Rm 9 and 10 this term the back area access of R5-12 will be closed. Please use the entrances at the front of the classrooms.

End of the day Pick Up for Year 1 Students

All Year 1 students are brought up to the wall at 2:45pm daily to be picked up by parents. School finishes at 3pm for all other year levels.


Head lice and nits are a common problem among school-aged children and can affect the whole school community. Lice and nits can easily spread from one person to another through close head-to-head contact or sharing personal items. The Ministry of Health recommends that students with live lice should stay away from school until treatment has started.
Parents/Caregivers are primarily responsible for identifying, treating, and preventing head lice by:
  • checking their child's hair regularly for signs of head lice or nits
  • treating the head lice or nits (e.g. combing and using a head lice shampoo/lotion)
  • informing the school if their child has head lice so that notification and treatment information can be shared as appropriate.
If you would like to support Te Waarakihi's journey while he fights
to get healthy again, here is a link to his give a little page if
you would prefer to donate $ or cannot donate blood.

KINDO - Helpdesk Ph 0508 454 636

Kindo recommend that if you are having a problem using KINDO either on your computer or on the mobile phone app, that you contact the Kindo Helpdesk straight away. This way you can explain the exact problem you are having and KINDO can troubleshoot the issue while you are on the phone. Issues can arise for various reasons, usually they have to do with the web browser
(Firefox/Safari/Google Chrome etc) or the app platform (such as Apple iPhone/Android Google Play) being used. Because of this the issues can be quite different and not the same for everyone.

Lost Property

Please ensure your child's clothing, sunhat, book bag, drink bottle and lunch box are named so that if they are left behind at school they can be returned to your child. Any unnamed items will be placed in the Lost Property shed beside the hall. This will be open daily. On Tuesdays and Fridays (weather permitting) all items from the shed will be on display on the wall at the rear of the hall for students and parents to check.


Winter illnesses are taking hold across the motu, with ‘flu season’ arriving earlier than normal. Aotearoa is also at a high risk of a measles outbreak with immunisation rates dropping off since COVID-19. We encourage your school community to follow Te Whatu Ora advice, particularly that the best protection against an outbreak of measles is the MMR vaccine.

For more information please visit: Measles – Health New Zealand | Te Whatu Ora


If your child needs to be seen by the Community Oral Health dental team please call 0800 525 378.

After hours or emergency – please contact Lakes Primecare
or ED at Rotorua Hospital


Absentee Email Function

A number of parents have contacted us to advise that they are having issues with our SchoolApp Absentee function, not being able to scroll down further on the screen to be able to type in a reason for the absentee. It seems this problem occurs if you are using an out-of-date version of our SchoolApp or if you are using an iPhone. Please make sure you are using the most current version of the SchoolApp, you may need to go to the Apple App Store or Google Play to download this. If you have an iPhone, when entering an absentee email, you need to select an 'Absent From' Date and click DONE before it will allow you to scroll further down. The 'Absent From' date automatically appears in the box, however you still need to click on this box, select a date and then click 'DONE'. If you have any further problems, please let us know.

Pedestrian Crossings and Roundabouts

We need to remind our children that road crossing (at any point) should only be done at walking pace (ie not running or riding) this gives drivers an opportunity to see people crossing roads and react if necessary. While pedestrian crossings are the safest place to cross, they still need to be used safely.
Crossing the Road
Students should cross the road using kerb drill:
Stop one step away from the kerb, or edge of the road.
Look all ways that traffic might be approaching.
Listen for traffic.
When the road is clear, walk briskly across, looking each way for traffic.

Using the Pedestrian Crossing
Students should use the pedestrian crossing if there is one available. The law says that if you are within 20 metres of a pedestrian crossing or traffic lights, you must use them. This is very important to pedestrians who cross over Springfield Road by Jackson Park Kindergarten as some are crossing straight over the road without using the crossings.

Children sometimes believe that being on the pedestrian crossing is quite safe and that cars will automatically stop. They need to be reminded to use the kerb drill in the usual way.

More useful resources:

Riding Safely in Otonga School


A reminder for everyone!

No U-turns and No 3-point-turns along Otonga Road outside School.

Drop Off / Pick Up Zone

This area in front of the school (adjoining the school crossing, inside the blue bollards) is a 5-minute loading zone only. Cars are not to be left unattended or parked for longer than 5 minutes. As this area is a drop off / pick up zone only - your child must be able to get in and out of the car by themselves.

Admin/Office & Staff Car Parks

These are Staff ONLY areas – Strictly No Entry for Parents/Pupils. Please DO NOT use these areas as a drop off or pick up zone. Our staff car park cannot fully cater for all the staff cars. For safety reasons, parents and visitors are asked to park on the road paying careful attention not to park on the yellow lines or across our neighbour's driveways.

Car Parking and Pupil Safety

In the interests of child safety, we ask that parents take particular care when driving or parking near the school. Please be vigilant towards pedestrians and cyclists!

A reminder for everyone!

No U-turns along Otonga Road
outside School.
There is an official traffic no
U -Turn signposted.
• No parking in the bus bay.
• No parking or blocking driveways.
• No double parking.
• No parking on the grass verge.
• No parking on traffic islands or
yellow lines.
• No blocking or stopping on
pedestrian crossing
Watch out for cyclists!
• Only cross Otonga Road at the
crossing with your children.
The main issue concerning the roads and traffic flow is CONSIDERATION of others. Please: CONSIDER Children’s safety, on foot and on bikes. CONSIDER local residents’ access. CONSIDER other drivers.

Suggestions for making traffic flow easier:

• Arrive a little later to pick up children (by 3:10pm, Otonga Road is half empty)
• Find pick-up/drop off points a little distance away from the school.
(eg above Kiwi St going up Otonga Rd)
• Use the McDowell Street circuit to put you on the school side of the road.

Spare Clothes

Please ensure that all students have a set of spare clothes packed in their bags at all times. The weather can be unpredictable and accidents do happen. Slipping over in the mud & getting wet through are regular occurrences, as we encourage outdoor play in all weather. It is bound to happen at some stage, so best be prepared.

Sun Safety

Please ensure your children are coming to school with a sunhat and sunblock applied every day during Term 1 and Term 4. Even on overcast days, you can get burnt. Hats are really important. A full drink bottle for water is a must. Students without hats will need to play in the shade while outside.

VisTab Sign-in Sponsor Needed

We are in search of a business to sponsor our VisTab - People Management System. All visitors sign in and out using VisTab on arrival/departure at reception in the school office. We will add your company logo at the bottom of the default screen. It is seen by many, even through the window when the school office is closed. The cost is $63.25 per month. Please contact the school office if you would like the opportunity. First in first served.


After school art lessons with Janet Keen enrolling NOW

Drawing, painting, mosaics, over 30 lessons to choose from.
Wednesdays 4:35pm to 5:35pm and Thursdays 4:35pm to 5:35pm
Enrolling for remainder of term 2, and terms 3 & 4.
Small classes, friendly, safe, quiet, organic environment
All Enquiries welcome.
Text or Phone 027 351 3887 or email janet@jkeen.net. 374 Clayton Road, Rotorua

Matariki Drone Show

AROUNI Indigenous Arts Festival with First Lights presents ‘Matariki’, a drone light, sound and story event this midwinter at the Rotorua Lakefront, Aotearoa. Created by Māori artists Cian Elyse White (Ngāti Pikiao) and Mataia Keepa (Ngāti Whakaue), Matariki (the Māori name for the cluster of stars also known as the Pleiades) tells the stories of environmental markers connected to this star cluster, as well as the large Waka or Canoe (Te Waka o Rangi) and it’s captain Taramainuku.

Throughout the year, Taramainuku traverses the sky with a large net, collecting the souls of our loved ones who have passed away across the year. During the month of May, Te Waka o Rangi sails beneath the horizon, rising again in June/July. When it rises, Taramainuku casts his net into the sky, releasing the collected souls to be immortalised forever as stars. Signalling the start of a new year, ‘Matariki’ invites audiences to look to the night sky and consider their human connection to the celestial realm.

When: Thursday the 27th and Friday the 28th of June
Time: Rotorua Night Markets from 5:00PM.
Drone light show starts at 8:00PM on the dot.
Where: Rotorua Lakefront | Kouramāwhitiwhiti
Cost: Free and suitable for the whole whānau

Waiariki Women's Refuge - Call for help!

WWR is needing to a big supply drive for whānau that are coming into the service. At the moment, there are 3-4 families in crisis accessing the service. (Rotorua has one of the highest incidences of Family Harm in New Zealand, so our help will be very much appreciated.)

Please drop the following off at the School Office:
Nappies (all sizes), Wipes, New underwear and socks for our mums and tamariki, Shampoos and bodywashes.
Non-perishable food items such as: Snacks and lunch items for tamariki, pasta sauces, food preparation items, tinned sauces and foods, food bases, gravies, sugars, coffees, long life milk, and other food items, breakfast cereals, ready to heat meals (like noodles, soups etc.).

Things for the deep freezer like bread, frozen veggies and frozen food.
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