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Got time for your kids? Got time to read this important notice?

We have all heard of the phrase time poor. How time poor are we? As a very important part of our reporting we arrange conference/interview times for parents/whanau to give a little time for their tamariki. Is your child worth 15 minutes of your time, plus travel time? Of course! Yes, they are. Are we so ‘time poor’ we can’t spend 15 minutes talking about our own tamariki at school?

Conferences/Interviews allow our tamariki to share their work directly with you, not just online via a screen or through a printed ‘report’. It allows at least a little time for child, parent/whanau and teacher to meet face-to-face and swap information and celebrate success. They are a three-way conversation. Conferences/Interviews are not just a report for parents. Are you willing to spend 15 minutes of your time acknowledging your child’s work at school? It beats just having an on-line portfolio or conversation by email and it shows your kids you are prepared to give them time.

Thanks to those parents/whanau who have booked conference/interview times, you are acknowledging the importance of learning for your child and their teacher. Your tamariki and the school thank you for your time!

John Stackhouse

Tumuaki/Principal

 

Kia ora Whanau/Parents,

Government Payment Instead of School Donations:

Does Redwood School qualify for this? No.

Dear Parents/Whanau,

In the most recent budget the Government announced the provision for decile 1-7 schools to opt into a scheme whereby they have $150 per student given to them if they (school Boards) do not ask directly for parent/whanau donations to the school for general school-related funding. Unfortunately in this instance, we are still designated as a decile 8 school and therefore do not qualify for this assistance. The ‘decile 8’ tag is seen by the Government as an indicator that Redwood School is in a reasonably affluent community.

We are therefore quite dramatically financially ‘disadvantaged’ for being designated as a decile 8 school. Parent donations to Redwood School are purely voluntary and we set our donation guide figure low for a decile 8 school. We have always realised that our community should not be ‘put upon’ to provide extra funds. Our family donation take is around $16000 per year. If we qualified for the Government offer of $150 per student we would have funding of $48000. This is a difference of $32000 per year. If it was available to us it would therefore significantly benefit Redwood School to be part of the Government payment scheme.

As we do not qualify for the Government’s scheme, Redwood School will continue to ask for a voluntary donation from parents each year. We have always stressed that this donation is voluntary and we have deliberately kept our donation request low understanding the financial strain on whanau.

The PTA will also continue to work hard as a group to raise money to support our tamariki. The PTA supports the school but is not controlled by the Board or Principal. The PTA has, among other things, has:

·        Raised $38000 towards our new playground so far

·        Subsidised our swimming programme each year by $5000, thus reducing costs to all parents

·        Funded classroom resources every year including books, games, maths and ICT resources etc to benefit all children

·        Assisted financially with camps to support our tamariki and ensure all get a chance to go

·        Continually reached out and supported our community since the school first started.

Redwood School works to a very tight budget. We work hard to make sure that the money we spend has the best impact on our tamariki’s learning. Your extra support for the school through financial donations or donations of your time are very much appreciated and help make a significant difference for our tamariki and their whanau.

John Stackhouse

Tumuaki/Principal

For the Redwood School Board of Trustees.