By Tracy O'Brien | Posted: Wednesday January 30, 2019
Tena Koutou Katoa. Ng mihi o te kura Tau Hou ki a koutou katoa. Nau mai haere mai!
Greetings to all and best wishes for the new school year. Welcome!
Yesterday we welcomed in our new cohort of Year 7's and students/families starting in other Year Levels with a dynamic Mihi Whakatau. Thanks to all of our speakers and Roopu Kapa Haka for the lovely waiata. It was great to see new parents and families as well as those with a long association with Kavanagh College. At our opening mass, we commissioned our Head Students and prefects for 2019. They are an exceptional group of young and aspiring leaders.
Regular timetabled classes are now up and running. Most senior students have had their courses confirmed but there may be a few who need some changes over the next week.
Thanks to all of our parents and caregivers for getting their young ones to school so well turned out and learning ready after the summer break-well done!
A warm welcome to new members of staff. On the senior admin team, we welcome Brendan Jarvie who takes over from Sidney Bennett as the College Bursar/Business Manager. Brendan is a qualified accountant and a former Kavanagh student. His financial skills will be invaluable for the College moving forward in an ever complex area. Our new HOD English replacing Pauline Ireland Kenny is Emma Harris. Emma and her family have moved south from Auckland where she was teaching and leading at Kristen School in Albany. She is a highly accomplished and qualified teacher who brings a number of new ideas and innovations to Kavanagh. I am sure the school community will welcome both Brendan and Emma and support them in their work.
Our preliminary NCEA results from 2018 reveal some exceptional outcomes. NCEA level 1 pass rate was 88.7% with 35% of students achieving an excellence endorsement up from 22% in 2017. Level 2 was 88% pass rate up from 81% in 2017. Level 3 pass rate was 75% also up on the previous year with 25% achieving excellence. Well done to our students and staff. It certainly gives us great hope and promise for what this year might bring on the academic front.
Currently, we have major building renovations in the Science department as our labs are being modernised. We are working around this but there will be some disruptions. If you are in this area please be mindful and follow any health and safety instructions. In the IT space, we are currently upgrading our student management and learning systems which will include a parent portal. This will allow parents to view things like their student's timetable, absentee records, reports etc. It will also improve remote access for staff and students for their work and allow greater flexibility in an array of learning and pastoral areas not to mention improved communication. Watch this space.
This year we began on a deeply solemn note after the passing of Kavanagh College student Peter Sewell in the holidays. Thank you to our staff, parents and students and the pastoral team who have supported each other and the family in extremely difficult circumstances. On Tuesday our seniors gathered in the auditorium to remember and pray for Peter saying the rosary led by Fr Mark Chamberlain. He will be dearly missed and remembered. As a community, we stand together and continue to pray for Peter and those connected to our community that have died recently.
Eternal rest grant unto them o Lord. May they rest in peace. Amen.