Ōtaki College News, January 2015



From the Principal

Nga mihi nui mo te tau hou – Happy New Year!
Tohea,tohea,ko te tohe i te kai
Keep striving, as one strives for food – we hope that all students will return to college wanting to “strive always to be the best that can be”.

Like every year the College is now very busy as staff are back in working hard to get ready for 2015 which promises to be another exciting year. It is a year where there are some changes to our staff and I would like to warmly welcome the following staff members to Ōtaki and to the College;

  • Coline Diver – Mathematics
  • Sam Ward – Physical Education, Health and Outdoor Education
  • Wendy Joyes – Science (2 terms relieving for Dawn Hirschberg who has a Royal Society of Science Scholarship)
  • Grace Taniora – Maori (30 weeks for Ricki Baker who is on a teach NZ scholarship).
  • David Miller returns now for another year but is moving into the Mathematics and Science departments. We are currently in the process of appointing a new Special Education Needs Co-ordinator who will commence at the beginning of Term 1.

Sander Scholar

Alana Fraser departed for Scotland on Tuesday 20th January and landed in Aberdeen on Thursday 22nd to commence her two week stay being hosted by Robert Gordon’s College. She is very excited about the visit and looks forward to reporting back to the community on her return in early February. Sincere thanks to Sander Tie Company for this scholarship and fantastic opportunity.

The Year Ahead

In 2015 we are looking to consolidate much of the work that has been undertaken in 2014. We are currently continuing our self-review process on our Charter and Annual Plan. This will lead to the finalisation of our 2015 goals and targets which will be shared with the community via the college website and newsletter.

The property development process is now underway and this will be reported on as it unfolds. We are very excited about the modernisation of the administration block, the development of a state of the art library/centre of learning area and the development of a purpose built learning support unit.

Duke of Edinburgh Award and other student development opportunities.

This year we are fortunate to have Lisa Grant commencing the running the Duke of Edinburgh Award in the College. This will provide students with an opportunity to develop skills in the outdoors as well as building on their own personal development. This award will complement the Outward Bound and Spirit of Adventure scholarships that will again be on offer to students this year.

XŌtaki – Ōtaki College Whanau Alumni

A reminder to all our leavers, and to anyone interested in the College, that we have an active association which keeps ex-students in touch with each other and also raises scholarship funds for current students. To join up go to http://xŌtaki.org.nz/Signup.


The Student Centre will be open for uniform at the following times every day in the week beginning 26th January:

  • 9.00am-12.00 midday and 1.00-3.30pm (closed for lunch from 12.00-1.00pm)
  • From Mon 2nd February normal office hours will resume: 08.30am – 03.30pm

Important Reminders


All year 7 to 10 students will be usingchrome books this year. If you have not already done so then the sign up day for this is on Tuesday 27th January 9.00 am to 5.00 pm


New uniform items can be purchased from the office from Monday 26th January. ONLY Ōtaki College uniform items can be worn at college.

Late Starts/timetable changes

Late Starts are now to take place each week on Fridays (not Thursday as has been previous practice)

The College timetable has altered slightly for this year so please note that the school day will now finish at 3.10 p.m.

Form class time

Form classes will now be at the commencement of the college day. ALL students are expected to be at form class on time and prepared for the school day. Being timely and well organised are key skills sought by employers so we want parents to support their child to learn the importance of good time management.

Student Safety – College vehicle free zone

With the development of two carparks we will now be creating a pedestrian precinct for students by excluding vehicles (by way of a barrier arm) from the college grounds before school, during interval/lunch breaks and after school. This is for student safety so please respect this and use the car park areas provided.


If you have any questions please do not hesitate to be in contact.