Category: Principal’s Comment



27 Jul

Kapa Haka & Tu Tangata

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

There have been two moments recently where students from our St Mary’s College have, quite literally, taken my breath away – the Kapa Haka regional competitions in Otaki and the Tu Tangata celebrations held last night at the Michael Fowler Centre.

Nine of our students performed in the combined St Patrick’s, St Catherine’s and St Mary’s Colleges’ group, Ngā Maioha o Te Rangikauia in the esteemed regional competition for Kapa Haka. The breath-taking entrance of the group, the precision of the performance, the unity, the skills of movement and use of poi, the beauty in the spirit of the singing and the pride that shone on every face was an emotional experience for whanau watching and for whanau who had walked the journey through long months of preparation, supporting the students with kai, transport and fundraising.

It has been a similar journey for the students preparing for Tu Tangata. Student-led and student-choreographed with strong support from family and staff, the performance of song and movement by the SMC SOA group was stunning. As the lights came up to reveal our girls in the beautiful costumes th at so enhanced their performance, there was a moment of absolute realisation that all the hours of hard work had been worth every moment. Tu Tangata means to “stand tall”. To see our young women standing tall with immense dignity and pride in their culture and in the sisterhood of shared cultural appreciation, was a blessing. Our student group were especially chosen by the Komiti to present last in the group of performances. This is a position of honour at the Tu Tangata festival and well deserved.

Well done to all our girls in the Kapa Haka regionals and in the Tu Tangata festival. You have brought great joy to our College through your hard work and determination to succeed.

Arohanui,

Catherine Ryan
Principal

Here’s the link of the official video from this years Tu Tangata festival. Our St Mary’s performance begins at 2:53:20.

Preview YouTube video Tu Tangata Polyfest 2017

Tu Tangata Polyfest 2017

25 Jul

Weekly News 24 July 2017

Welcome to Term 3. 
This term is looking to be another busy one. We have new enrolment interviews, Tu Tangata festival, Learning Conversations, subject information evening, course selection, PTFA auction night, Year 12 semi-formal, Year 13 Ball, continuation of winter sport and much more.

At the end of last term I was honoured to be able to support our kapa haka rōpū,
Ngā Maioha o Te Rangikuia.  Our students were absolutely amazing, with the level of competition extremely high.  I would like to thank all of the SMC parents and whanau for the time and energy they put in to supporting our rōpū.

Tomorrow night, Tuesday 25 July, our group SMCSOA will be performing at the Tu Tangata festival. I wish them all the very best and thank the girls, their parents, families and staff for the enormous time and energy put into the preparations for the festival. The students are looking and sounding stunning.

We welcome several new staff. The new Principal’s PA is Sharyn Hoerara; taking over from Anna Coltman is Shona Carstens who will be teaching Biology and Science and Tony Meyers, Religious Studies.

For the remainder of this year our Year 9 students will have our AP, Peter Sanders and our DRS, Donne Skelnars as their Dean. You can contact either by email at peter.sanders@stmw.school.nz. or donne.sklenars@stmaryswellington.school.nz.

The Wellington Justices of the Peace Association offer the services of two local Justices of the Peace to come to St Mary’s College to certify copies of Photo Identification and to certify copies of Birth Certificates for students applying for placement at a tertiary institution. They also provide affidavits for those students applying for scholarships. This will take place next Monday July 31st from 12 noon until 1.30 pm in the Library. Students will need to bring copies of their birth certificate and passport. We are very fortunate to have this service.

Learning Conversations will be held on Thursday, 10 August, from 1.30pm – 6.00pm.   These learning conversations are focused on students who are not achieving to their ability or who need some additional support within their learning.  Subject teachers will be sending an email to parents of students who they would like to see. If you receive an email, please make an appointment to see the subject teacher.  Bookings can be made online from Friday, 28 July. Please see the website for details.
Coming up this Term:
Subject Information Evening 17 August
Australian Maths competition 27 July
Winter tournament: 4 Sept – 8 Sept.
SMC Auction: TBA
Mercy Week -11 Sept – 15 Sept

Have a good term.

Yours in Mercy and Wisdom
Catherine Ryan

8 Feb

Welcome Back!

Happy New Year!

There is so much hope in celebrating a new year – the opportunity for each of us to start again, to look forward to a fresh start. The most exciting part of the new year is that we don’t know everything about what lies ahead – there is real excitement in the unknown, in the untried, in the promise of good things to come.

I love the theme that we have for our new year at St Mary’s. As we focus on wellbeing of students, staff and families this year, we do so with HOPE, placing ourselves in God’s hands and setting our sights high for the amazing experiences that are about to happen.

I look forward so much to welcoming our new students and their families, to welcoming back our current students and families, to welcoming all our Year 13 students as leaders in the College. We wish our Student Leadership Team every blessing as they begin their special work in the College. To Head Girl, Elise Natoli, Deputy Head Girl Special Character, Maria Helbano, Deputy Head Girl Cultural, Te Mapihi Tutua-Nathan, Deputy Head Girl Arts, Olivia Paxie, Deputy Head Girl Sports, Sariah Penese and Deputy Head Girl Level Leaders, Penny Peneueta, we offer the support of our whole community. These girls have already been hard at work, organising and planning for the year ahead. I know they will lead the student body with great pride and passion.

There are many activities on offer at the College and I urge every student to consider becoming involved in some extra- curricular activity in 2017. There is immense value in the learning of subjects in the classroom but we should not miss out on the learning opportunities to be found in these extra-curricular opportunities. Being “good” at planning, reflecting, refining, working together, problem solving, having a go, persevering when the going gets tough and coming to understand our personal strengths is critical to being successful in today’s world. Every situation is a learning situation and we want our students to embrace and enjoy an immense variety of learning situations in 2017. Our Mission statement: Centered in God; Learning Together; Embracing the Future; Enabling Young Women, underpins so many of the above attributes. We will continue to be challenged by this vision.

Over the break our students have continued to be busy. I was really honoured to be invited by the Rowing Teams to watch their training at Lake Karapiro in late December. The two hours spent on the water was truly inspiring and gave me some insight into the skills and demands of this amazing sport; members of our College Rugby Team were selected to play in the Wellington Rugby Sevens Tournament Team, qualifying for nationals; Ainsleyana Puleiata travelled to Fiji, playing for the NZ Under 21 Netball Team. These are amazing experiences and the students involved deserve plenty of accolades. We look forward to the challenges that this year will bring for all our students.

Let’s join together as community in 2017 and work together, appreciating all that we each bring to this community as we make this year, this 2017, a truly happy new year – a year of HOPE.

Arohanui.

Catherine Ryan
Principal

16 Nov
15 Nov

UPDATE 15 November 7.30pm

St Mary’s College will be open Wednesday 16 November for classes for Junior students and for NCEA examinations.  If any examination students are prevented from attending the examinations due to weather conditions a derived grade process will be put in place for these students.

WARNING – A building on Molesworth Street in the block between Hill Street and Hawkestone Street is in danger of collapsing.  This area has been cordoned off by Police.  Students are advised to keep well clear of this area.

Mrs Catherine Ryan
Principal

15 Nov

IMPORTANT NOTICE 11.29am 15 Nov

Dear Parents and Caregivers

JUNIOR STUDENTS
We have just been advised that roads are closing due to flooding and that all train services have ceased. All families of Junior Students are advised that they should come and collect students from school as soon as possible.
Any students not able to get through to their home may remain at school where they will be cared for until they are able to be collected.
NO student may leave the school premises until a parent or caregiver has made direct contact with the school.

SENIOR STUDENTS.
NZQA morning and afternoon exams are still on as scheduled.

PLEASE KEEP CHECKING THE ST MARY’S COLLEGE WEBSITE www.st-marys-wellington.school.nz for further updates.

Kind regards.

Mrs Catherine Ryan
Principal

15 Nov

Important Notice for Parents/Caregivers

15 November 2016

Dear Parents and Caregivers

JUNIOR STUDENTS
We have just been advised that roads are closing due to flooding and that all train services have ceased. All families of Junior Students are advised that they should come and collect students from school as soon as possible.
Any students not able to get through to their home may remain at school where they will be cared for until they are able to be collected.
NO student may leave the school premises until a parent or caregiver has made direct contact with the school.

SENIOR STUDENTS.
NZQA morning and afternoon exams are still on as scheduled.

PLEASE KEEP CHECKING THE ST MARY’S COLLEGE WEBSITE www.st-marys-wellington.school.nz for further updates.

Kind regards.

Mrs Catherine Ryan
Principal

15 Nov
14 Nov

IMPORTANT NOTICE 11.20am 15 Nov

Dear Parents and Caregivers

JUNIOR STUDENTS
We have just been advised that roads are closing due to flooding and that all train services have ceased. All families of Junior Students are advised that they should come and collect students from school as soon as possible.
Any students not able to get through to their home may remain at school where they will be cared for until they are able to be collected.
NO student may leave the school premises until a parent or caregiver has made direct contact with the school.

SENIOR STUDENTS.
NZQA morning and afternoon exams are still on as scheduled.

PLEASE KEEP CHECKING THE ST MARY’S COLLEGE WEBSITE www.st-marys-wellington.school.nz for further updates.

Kind regards.

Mrs Catherine Ryan
Principal

23 Sep

Happy Mercy Day!

Happy Mercy Day!

In Mercy, we touch the hearts of those who are in misery

In Mercy we are touched by them and feel their strength and courage

In Mercy we heal the pain of those who are in sorrow

In Mercy we are healed by them and we see the face of hope

The beautiful words of this song, The Circle of Mercy, which has become the song that unites Mercy work internationally, are fitting words to reflect on this very special day for St Mary’s College as we celebrate together the essence of who we are a community. Today we celebrate our Mercy College, our Mercy community and we join in spirit with our sister schools throughout New Zealand – Villa Maria College in Christchurch; St Catherine’s College in Wellington; Carmel College, St Mary’s College Ponsonby and McAuley College in Auckland. As we do so, let us acknowledge all those who are the reason for why we exist in the first place – the poor, the sick, the homeless, the powerless ones, particularly women and children, those with little voice of their own – theirs is a presence within and alongside of us today – a powerful presence whose call we must continue to respond to, to reach out in service to. As we celebrate together this day let us always remember that we are called to be aroha in action to one another and to those whose voices we hear in our hearts.

I wish you all a very happy Mercy day and hope that the holiday time will be a time for families to spend some special time together.

Arohanui

24 May

The Gift of O’Shea

What an amazing time we had at the recent O’Shea Shield competition, in the beautiful setting of Sacred Heart Girls’ College, New Plymouth, and its surrounds. This annual Catholic school competition brings together 17 secondary schools from the Wellington and Palmerston North dioceses and focuses on skills of Religious Questions, Debating, Public Speaking, Oratory and Scripture Reading, both in English and in Te Reo Māori. While I am delighted that St Mary’s gained a very creditable fourth place, with only a point separating each of the Colleges in the first band of place getters, my greatest delight was in witnessing the dignified, supportive team behaviour of our girls. Their delight in making new friends and appreciating the skills of the other competitors was such a credit to them. With these students also heavily committed to almost daily Stage Challenge practices, Sporting events and Debating rounds, their participation in the O’Shea is very commendable. Thanks must go to the dedicated teachers and to Sister de Porres  for their wonderful support and wisdom shared with the team. Roll on next year at St Bernard’s College in Wellington!

5 May
4 May

Welcome back to Term 2

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

Welcome back to Term 2.

It is important for our young Catholic women to think about the plight of others.  At the ANZAC Day memorial service, Head Girl, Alice Tinawi, and Deputy Head Girl Arts, Laura Gianotti, laid a wreath on behalf of our College community.  A large number of our St Mary’s girls participated in Relay for Life with around 50 Year 13 students and another group of Year 12 students walking throughout the night.  Our Year 13 student leaders have been creating and presenting in assemblies a Map to Mercy to celebrate the Jubilee Year of Mercy.  They are busy driving the College forward on the Mercy journey this term with special Mercy focus months.  This month we recognise the Corporal Work of Mercy, “Clothe the Naked”, as students are encouraged to donate clothing for various Wellington shelters.  We will soon be participating in an initiative with the Soup Kitchen.  This spirit of outreach also includes our wider community with the PTFA about to initiate a program of caring for our College community in times of stress.  I look forward to sharing this with you.

“Mercy is more than justice; it is a matter of attentiveness and sensitivity to the concrete needs we encounter”. (Kasper)