Communication No.1 20 Aug 2021

20 August 2021


Mā whero, mā pango ka oti ai te mahi


 With red and black the work will be complete 


This whakatauki is similar to ‘Nau te rourou’ in that it refers to working together, however it talks more directly to the need for collaboration. Traditionally ‘whero’ signifies chiefs/leaders and ‘pango’ the community/workers. It acknowledges the need for both to work together in order to complete the work

Kia ora e te whānau/students


As you would have heard this afternoon, the Prime Minister has announced that we will remain at Alert Level 4. This means that we will be staying in lockdown until 11.59 pm Tuesday 24 August.  A decision will be made if lockdown is to continue or not on that day. Even if the Alert Level does change to Level 3, on-line learning will continue


For most of us, we had a similar experience last year, although our current Year 9 students could have had a different experience in their contributing school.


For next week 23-27 August I have asked our staff to:


Teaching and Learning


  • To post 1-2 lessons in Google Classroom for the students to access and work on.
  • These lessons will be supported by a Zoom lesson probably of 10-20 minutes duration.  The Zoom lesson may not necessarily be on Monday as students suffer from Zoom fatigue.
  • Teachers will be available to answer questions via email during normal working hours i.e 8:45am - 3:10pm
  • After last year’s lockdown many students reported that they liked to work asynchronously.  This means that rather than follow their daily timetable, they preferred to structure their work around task completion, so it might be they spend continuous hours on an assignment/assessments
  • At the end of the week we will review the progress that is being made and advise you of any changes


Form Time


Should lockdown continue after Tuesday, Form Teachers will make contact with their form classes to ensure that all students are on track.


Subject Choice


Subject choice will be put on hold for next week.  However, if lockdown goes into the following week then alternative arrangements will be made.




There is no sport during Alert Level 4. We will advise you on any resumption of sport after the next government announcement. During the weekend, the New Zealand Secondary Sport Council will be meeting to decide if Winter Tournament will go ahead.  Advice will be provided on Monday 23 August.




We are aware that a few students do not have access to a device, either a laptop or desktop. These students have been identified through data collected at school last Monday and Tuesday as well as through a survey emailed to all students on Tuesday. We will make direct contact with these whānau over the next day to make arrangements for collection of a short term loan from our school stock. 

Tips For Students - How Will It Work?


Last year we provided you with the following tips to help you with your on-line learning.  Please read these again as you prepare to work independently and online.


We recommend that you adopt the following habits:


  1. You must check your email - you will have updates from your teachers, in the form of emails, Google Classroom and other platform notifications. We’ll also tell you which staff are sick, so you won’t be able to contact them. Make a plan for how you will manage your classes and write it down. 


  1. Look at your timetable - Get up and get dressed - you don’t have to be in uniform! During your normal lessons your teachers will be available to support you with your work. Take regular breaks, drink water and eat good food. 


  1. Set up a work space - Find a space at home that you can set up as a good work environment. Make sure that it is comfortable, well lit and ventilated and somewhere you can work without distractions. 


  1. Have some fun - Make sure you have some variety in your day. Make space for exercise, creativity and device-free time!


  1. Find a support person - many of us need someone to hold us accountable and help us to stay on track. Perhaps one of your parents might check in with you to make sure you have a work plan, or maybe you and another student in your form class could check in with each other. It is important to set up good work habits and set yourself up for managing screen time.


  1. Friend Time - think about a way you and your friends can catch up at interval and lunch time online. Try an online video call with your morning tea. 


  1. Remember our school values - think about ways that you can show Me Whakamatau as you navigate this new way of learning.

This website also has some helpful tips to support students and parents with learning at home -

We Are Here For You - If You Need Us We Can Support You


This is a rapidly changing situation for all of us, and it could be stressful and uncertain. We know that there is a huge amount of information online, not all of it is useful. Here at Newlands College we are committed to supporting you during this time. Contact your subject and Form Teacher or your Deans if you need some support. They can make time to chat to you and work out the best way to support you. Take care with what you read online. Remember to critique your sources just as you normally would. 


Finally, if you would like a reminder of what the different Alert Levels require, please see,




All the very best.


Ngā manaakitanga

Grant Jones


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