By Jane Johnson | Posted: Monday December 5, 2016
This year has gone too quickly!
Launched with a successful LPHS
management initiative of a city-wide University Entrance Summer School, the
year began with many teachers, as well as managers and House Deans helping 2015
level 3 NCEA students to complete their University Entrance qualifications from
mid-January. Hence teachers were more than ready to “mihi” our new, year 9
students and new staff (Alan Reynolds and Sue Kim) on February 3. We also welcomed
back our last year’s Head Boy, Jacobi Kohu-Morris, to speak on behalf of the
new students at our Mihi Whakatau in Manawa Toi Whakaari.
Term 1 highlights were the inaugural Korean and Japanese Asian Language classes, the selection of outstanding senior leaders starting up our many Clubs, Student Council, Sports and Cultural events. As usual, House Day and Sports Days were pivotal in establishing a sense of fun and belonging for new students and we were well-organised with our Teacher-Only-Day and Student Council Work Day on March 15th for both juniors and seniors. Easter came early and oddly enough we returned to school for three more weeks of focused curriculum work and year 10 Tautuku Camp before term 1 ended on April 15th. I don’t remember that happening before.
What I do remember clearly is all of the Board of Trustees’ multiple building projects happening in term 1/2 and coming into fruition through Mr Hills’ management, one by one, each an asset to our Kura: the extended PE entrance way, office space and meeting/display area complete with unisex toilets; a renovated Science laboratory for Dr Prime after its fascinating history with the much-loved Bruce McKinney-Einstein retiring in 2015; the roomy, useful and quiet English Department “Breakout Resource Area”; and most of all the transformations of two existing large rooms into extraordinary, high-tech and comfortable new spaces – the Library shift and the high-tech Music Department , complete with its own sound-proof practice rooms, recording studio, classroom and performance room! Mr Dodd, Ms Fahy and Mrs Millar are still smiling!
Terms 2 and 3 calendars filled up quickly with the second Tautuku year 10 Camp, a record “40 Hour Famine” fundraising campaign to provide two extra Refugee Camp children’s classrooms in Jordan, the Amnesty Club’s invitation to the Minister of Immigration to ask him to increase our NZ Refugee quota, the regional Nga Manu Korero contest with Ahi Kaitai-Mullane taking out the English speaking award. But for many seniors the highlight of the year was the Senior Formal at the Savoy where dinner and dancing seemed to hit the right spot. Open Day was a success with a full auditorium of visitors on July 31 and our LPHS Jazz Band’s trip to Christchurch shortly after saw our musicians return with gold awards for Best Band and Best Combo, with individual accolades for Erica Stedman (Best Singer) and George Maclaurin ( Best Musician and pianist) of the South Island Festival. School NCEA practice exams at the end of August were not quite as popular as Tournament Week at the beginning of September or the Kingaroy Sports trip in the school holidays! During the last week of term we also enjoyed our first Chinese language and cultural week with lunchtime activities.
However, Senior Prize-giving just before NCEA exam-leave demonstrated just how hard the majority of students had worked at their studies throughout the year and competition was tough at the top! Congratulations to the joint Dux award winners Grant McNaughton and Henri Gaudin and to our two "Class Acts” for 2016 – Katharine Woolrych and Grant McNaughton. We are very impressed with all of our 2016 inspirational leaders and year 13 leavers, led by our Head Prefects, Reva Grills and Jimmy Robinson.
Thanks also to Ariyan Zarei as the impressive Board Student representative 2015-16 and congratulations to our newly elected 2016-17 Student representative, the articulate Rosa Miles-Seeley.
I leave you with the words of my favourite Whakatauki to thank all of our own Kura members (Board of Trustees, students, staff and whanau) for your generous $1000:00 support from our final November 30th Mufti Day in support of the Kaikoura High school community rebuilding their lives slowly after the devastating November 14th earthquake.
Ehara toku toa I te toa takitahi
My strength is not due to me alone, but due to the strength of many.
Jane Johnson – Principal