December 2023 Edition
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The Connection

Week 10

Term 4

Huapai District School

December 14th 2023

Senior Leadership Message

This is our final newsletter for 2023. Thank you for all your support, engagement and contribution to making our school what it is.

We have the habit of trying to name our year at the beginning of the year. This is an attempt to look ahead, predict what our year is going to look like or rather, what we want our year to look like. This year we named our year “Reach”. A nautical word which describes the ability of a sailing boat to go faster than the wind. Naming our year “Reach” was a reflection and belief of the things that we had in place or saw in our people and direction that would generate greater speed and impact significantly. We believed we would see a greater sense of progress and achievement as these forces combined. We have had a great year. I would describe it as our best - certainly in my tenure of eight years. There was alignment, clarity, greater consistency and momentum in our classes, our programmes and direction. The feedback from our staff has been really positive in their sense of achievement and success.

As we look to 2024, we say farewell to a number of staff. We have farewelled Cathy Gray who has given 22 years of service to the school - predominantly in the library. We acknowledge and honour Keryn Annan (Deputy Principal) who is following her strengths and passion to work across schools and with teachers in professional development. We also thank and acknowledge Diane Thomas leaving for family reasons and Sineaya Harknett relocating to a school on the Shore.

These last few days are very full.

Thanks again for your support and involvement - it makes our school so much better.

Have a safe and restful holiday break.


John Petrie

Upcoming Events

  • Monday 18th December - End Of Year Junior Assembly (Year 0-4)
  • Monday 18th December - End Of Year Senior Assembly (Year 5-7)
  • Tuesday 19th December - Year 8 Prize-giving
  • Tuesday 19th December - Last Day Of Term 4 (Closing at 12:30pm)

Last Day Of School For 2024

Tuesday 19th December (Closing at 12:30pm)

Our final day for school is Tuesday 19th December. The school day will conclude at 12:30pm lunch-time, following our full school guard of honour for our graduating Year 8 group.

Students will be dismissed at 12:30pm. We ask that you make arrangements for your child’s care after this time. Huapai+ will be available for an afternoon booking should this be required.

Class Placement For 2024

We are in our final phases of curating the class groupings for 2024. This is a process that takes hours and hours of work to ensure we are setting the best environment for your child and others to thrive. You will be able to see which class your child has been placed in tomorrow afternoon, via Hero. Students will also have an opportunity to visit their new classes tomorrow, Friday 15th and spend time getting to know their classmates and 2024 teacher.

School Donations - Final Update

2023 has seen our best year yet with support for our school by paying the school donation. We did not hit our target of 78% but gave it a really good shot! We reached a support rate of 68.08%, generating $70,515 which we have used for curriculum resources and improvement across the school.

Back To School Stationery – Order Now!

We’ve teamed up with OfficeMax to make your back to school shop super easy. And if you order in December, you’ll go in the draw to WIN 1 of 5 $1000 cash prizes*.

Your child’s class list is already loaded. Just go to below) Simply add your details, check that you want everything on the list, then click and confirm — and OfficeMax will get your delivery underway with free delivery on orders over $70.

You can pay by internet banking, credit card or debit card. Laybuy* is also available, so you can pay in 6 weekly, interest-free payments and still get your order right away. Plus you’ll be helping our school earn school rewards* that we use to purchase much needed extra resources for our school.

We encourage you to order early to ensure your child has all their stationery requirements ready to go in plenty of time for the start of Term 1.

So go ahead and beat the back to school rush, order today and give them the best start possible.

*Terms and Conditions apply, see for details. ^Exclusions apply, see for details.

Huapai Plus Summer Holiday Programme

The amazing Huapai Plus Holiday Programme is running these school holidays. Check out the exciting programme and book at the link below.

Beyond The School Gates

This is a new section of our newsletter that is driven by you, our HDS community. While we know some of the amazing things our students get up to, we don’t know everything and this is where we need you to tell us. Do you have an HDS child / team / group that you would like to celebrate in the newsletter for an achievement? Please email 100 words or less and a photo to with the subject line “Beyond the school gates” and we will add it to the weekly newsletter.

This Week:
Eva S from Montessori is proud to have won a silver medal (2nd place) in Mental Arithmetic Olympic competition.
Speed Cubing Nationals 2023
Recently the 2023 Speed Cubing Nationals was held in Wellington. An event where the best speed cubers from around New Zealand gather to compete across a range of categories. In speed cubing there are no age groups, kids compete against adults!

Cameron Short was in attendance for his second year running. He managed to achieve personal best times in three categories, the 3x3 with a time of 14.43 seconds, the 2x2 with a time of 4.91 seconds and in the 3x3 one handed with a time of 33.23 seconds. This placed him in the top 100 for these divisions, a goal he has been aspiring to. Well done Cameron!

Term Dates 2024 - Next Year

The Board have confirmed the following dates for our 2024 school year:

Term 1: Wednesday 7th February through to Friday 12th April
Term 2: Monday 29th April through to Friday 5th July
Term 3: Monday 22nd July through to Friday 27th September
Term 4: Monday 14th October through to Friday 20th December

Please note this is a later than usual start and finish.

Sports-X Term 1 2024

Sports-X is back for 2024 and now offering Soccer and Basketball focused programs. Click the links below to register with them.

Creative Matters

Creative Matters are back for 2024. Bookings open for Term 1 of 2024 next week.

Music Lessons With MusiqHub

MusiqHub are looking forward to another awesome year of music in 2024 at Huapai School! They will have a bunch of slots available for Guitar, Drums, Piano and Ukulele lessons. If you're interested, be sure to get in touch to reserve your spot or ask any questions you may have. Contact details below:


Guitar, Keyboard and Ukulele:

2023 Term Dates

These are the Term Dates for 2023:

Term 1: Tuesday 7th February - Thursday 6th April
Term 2: Wednesday 26th April - Friday 30th June
Term 3: Monday 17th July - Friday 22nd September
Term 4: Monday 9th October - Tuesday 19th December

Teacher Only Days:
Monday 24th April (the day before Anzac Day)
Tuesday 6th June (King's Birthday weekend)

HERO Notifications

We use HERO to send classroom updates, to share regular learning posts and now for payment on all in-school costs. HERO sends push notifications or emails. You can now choose how you receive HERO notifications as well as manage devices that receive them.

To set your own notification preferences:
  1. Click on your profile image
  2. Select EDIT PROFILE
  3. Scroll down to My Devices and select your preferences.
Or please see the full instructions linked below.

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