Newsletter 2023/38

Principal's Message

Tena koutou PBS parents and caregivers

With only two weeks left of school, our end of year events are in full swing; please make sure you read today’s newsletter to ensure you are in the loop. 

As you’ll discover this newsletter is jam-packed with lots of wonderful things PBS students have been involved in recently; thank you whānau, for sharing your great kids with us.  Though kids can tire adults out easily, they also keep us young!

In today’s newsletter you can read about: 

  • Transition visits – to meet classmates and teachers for 2024
  • End of Year reporting
  • Great things PBS kids have been involved in recently 🙂

Upcoming dates for your awareness:

  • Year 8 Leavers’ Dinner – Tonight 6pm-9pm
  • Whole School Assembly – Tomorrow 9.30am. We would love to see you there! (NB: weather dependent as this event is held outdoors)
  • Te Moana Inquiry Showcase (Year 5-6 Syndicate) – Thursday, 7 December at 9.15am
  • Tatahi’s Annual Christmas Sing Along (Year 0-2 Syndicate) – Thursday, 14 December at 2.15pm 
  • Year 5-8 Prizegiving – Friday, 15 December

Last day of school is Friday, 15 December – School closes at 12.30pm on this day

Ka kite ano
Jess Ward
Principal ~ Tumuaki


Sharing good news spreads positivity, changes attitudes and ultimately leads to more people feeling encouraged and happy

Last Friday 100+ PBS students attended the annual Kapa Haka festival “Takiri o te Ata”.  This year it was hosted by Ōtaki School at Nga Purapura.  Our ākonga were fantastically prepared for their performance by Cath Franks, Colin Siversen and Kathryn Siversen. I was so proud to sit in the audience and watch their precision, hear their lovely voices, and enjoy the mahi tahi (teamwork) and hiranga (excellence) on display. Some videos of their performance can be found on our school’s facebook page. 

Kei te whakahī ahau.

Welcome to Our Recent New Students

There were no new students this week

Have You Checked Out Our Community Notices Directory?

Do you need to advertise your business, an upcoming event, need child care,  or looking for a gift or new club to join?  Check out the PBS Community Directory on our website

School Patrol Parade

This parade was to celebrate the year long effort of all the road patrollers on the Kapiti Coast, who are out there in all kinds of weather to help keep our students and their whānau safe.

The school patrol team are unique in that they are one of only three groups who have the ability to stop traffic. To do this they are trained by the Police Roading Team.

At this function our school road patrollers of the year received their prize. This year our recipients were Lukas Wilson and Mackenzie Shaw. These two students show all the qualities that you need to be a road patroller, they were reliable, punctual, demonstrated good judgements and were always willing to take on extra duties.  Thanks team!

End of Year Reporting

At PBS all our reporting is online throughout the year.  Parents can access their child’s learning progress via the @Schoolapp for students in Years 3-8 and SeeSaw for students in Years 0-2.

Learning Summary:  On the @Schoolapp dashboard click on the icon called “Learning Summary”.   This will have a downloadable end of year learning summary which will be accessible in the last week of school.  To view the learning summary, push the button titled “Learning Summary End of Year”.  Then on the next page push the button for the learning summary you would like to view.  In this view, you can print down the learning summary if desired.  Please note the graph which enables you to track your child’s curriculum level progress against previous years. 

What else can parents see on the @Schoolapp dashboard?   You will also find other spaces which shows your child’s learning and other online reporting options.  These are Learning Space, Spotlight and the Blog.  SeeSaw is the app platform that is used for students in Years 0-2. These platforms give parents the opportunity to log in and view their child’s progress and evidence of their learning at any time during the school year.  Throughout the year, teachers will upload progress on your child’s reading, writing and maths, as well as general comments on learning, attitude and behaviour.

When you are viewing reading, writing and maths comments about your child via these portals, you will notice a reference to the NZ Curriculum level your child is working at, at the beginning of the comment:  For example EL1 = Early Level 1, L1 = Level 1, EL2 = Early Level 2, L2 = Level 2 and so on.

NB:  Typically students in Years 0-2 are working at NZ Curriculum Level 1, Years 3-4 students are working at NZ Curriculum Level2, Years 5-6 students are working at NZ Curriculum Level 3 and Years 7-8 students are working at NZ Curriculum Level 4.

What are the benefits of online reporting:  The benefits of reporting online mean that the information parents are receiving about their child’s progress is more timely and accessible. This new way of reporting enables teachers to support students with individual goals throughout the year. 

With Spotlight, the Blog and SeeSaw students have greater ownership of their learning, especially when they can upload evidence to show their achievements.  Furthermore, parents have the ability to comment on their child’s progress, which helps to encourage and reinforce the gains they are making.

Classes for 2024 and Transition Visits

In preparation for 2024, we have scheduled ‘Transition Visits’ to allow students in Years 0-7 to meet their teacher and classmates for next year, before Term 4 ends.  This year transition visits will take place on Wednesday, 13 December.  On this day students will spend about 40 minutes with their 2024 class.  Class lists will then be displayed in the Library windows from Thursday, 14 December (morning) onwards.

Awesome Student Mahi

Debate Season

I am so glad that Te Motu syndicate still include debating in their literacy programmes; it is an art and a skill.  Learning how to put forward an argument, back-up statements with facts and figures, and develop research skills are the key component we see students improve in. The CREST values of excellence, self management and team-work were clearly on display during the Debate Final last week.  Congratulations to our winning team from Room 16, Molly-Sue, Ares and Makenzie!

Incredible Murals

Students in Te Moana have been busy putting the finishing touches on some more stunning murals for the school grounds. These new murals depict the Māori Gods.  Just wait till you see them up next year – they look even more stunning in real life! Miharo!

PBS Aroha Fund

One thing our school community is rich in is KINDNESS. It’s something we work hard to promote amongst our students. When we know someone is in need we try to give some additional support because not everyone’s circumstances are the same. We do our best as a school to ensure every child has equal opportunities regardless of finance or personal circumstance. Our PBS AROHA fund was set up to enable our whole community to offer support to such families.

The PBS AROHA fund enables anyone in our school community, including businesses, to donate money to help those in our school community who find it hard to make ends meet. It also means that we can provide lunches when kids don’t have any.

If you would like to contribute to this fund you can find it in KINDO labelled PBS AROHA. You can contribute $5, $10 or $20 at any time during the year. If a local business wants to make a contribution they can contact Libby on

Please talk to the office, Sarah Chambers or Jess Ward if you would like to know more about our PBS AROHA fund. All discussions will be confidential.

Giving a little means a lot!

Using Māori Language at Home

Learning another language provides many benefits including greater academic achievement, greater cognitive development, and more positive attitudes towards other languages and cultures. So, let’s give it a go and help to revitalise this unique language to Aotearoa for our tamariki. Each week our newsletter will include words or phrases that you might like to try out at your kāinga/home.

Here are some essential kupu that you may hear ia ra (everyday)

That’s beautiful – Te ātaahua hoki

Awesome – Ka rawe

Great helper – Kaiāwhina pai

That’s amazing – Ka mau te wehi

You are the best – Kei runga noa atu koe

Good work – Mahi pai

You are clever – Tō kerewa hoki

Kid's Quote

A preschooler and his mum came to meet with me in preparation for starting school. Clearly the principal was doing too much talking and the child was keen to start the tour of the school instead.  He looked at his mum and said, “When can we get out of here?”

Parent Helpers Morning Tea

Due to a number of clashing events, we have made the decision to hold our annual parent-helpers morning tea in Term 1, 2024.  In fact, we have decided to invite parent-helpers into a morning tea at the end of every term right throughout the year, so we can show our gratitude in a more timely way.

From the Student Council

Tomorrow morning at our final whole school assembly we will be doing the CREST card draw which celebrates tamariki who have been demonstrating our school values this term. We will also be revealing the Leaderboard to see which Whānau Group has taken out 2023. We’re asking everyone to wear their whānau colours one last time for 2023.

Thank you for supporting our events throughout the year. We appreciate you!

Digi Tech Corner

The following excerpt is from a great article that offers advice for parents of tweens and teens around technology. Click on the link for the entire article at the bottom, it’s worth it to get some great insight and tips.

Here Are The Tech Rules You Need To Be Setting For Your Tweens and Teens

Parenting adolescents is hard. 

But then you add in technology, and it feels almost impossible. 

Managing tech usage makes a complicated parenting stage even more difficult. First, there is the worry that keeps us up at night. We worry about what our teens might be seeing online, or what they might be doing, or WHO they might be meeting. Then, there are just the daily battles of trying to get them to turn off the devices and plug into life.

While the data is clear that tech and social media are a big reason why this generation faces unprecedented levels of anxiety and depression, it’s also challenging when everything is accessible via their devices right now: homework, study apps, schedules, exercise routines, meetings, games, and entertainment.

The truth is, sometimes tech can improve our lives, but where is the balance? When is enough, and how do you know when you’ve crossed the line?

There isn’t one easy answer when parents are tearing their hair out over tech, but there are tools we can use to make it easier.

Setting (and enforcing) technology rules and boundaries is critical to parenting today

So, why are ground rules important when it comes to technology and adolescents?

When expectations are clear, at least on some basic principles, our teens understand where we stand. It also gives a starting place for conversations on some pretty tough topics we need to discuss with our teens.

Are you looking for a cell phone contract that can help you take the emotion out of handing your child a device? Check out our cell phone contract here:

The first thing parents need to address is that technology is NOT a right

Our teens and tweens often have a hard time understanding the difference between what is a right and what is a privilege.

They have a right to shelter, food, an education, clothing, and yes, even our love.

But even that has boundaries on it. By food, that doesn’t mean we’ll fund their daily Frappuccino habit, and by clothing, we don’t mean brand-new $300 kicks every six months, and love doesn’t mean letting our kids get away with every negative action.

The same holds true for technology. Yes, our kids do need some access to a device for their education, whether it is for research, learning videos, apps, or class information. Many schools are now providing laptop computers and tablets for each student to use for their personal use.

In high school, many teachers rely on students having a mobile phone where they can access portals, learning apps or even to turn in assignments. These technologies are now fundamental parts of our society, and students need to learn how to use them responsibly and safely.

But that doesn’t translate into a right to brand new expensive mobile phones with all the bells and whistles along with unrestricted access and unlimited amounts of time to spend on all these tech toys.

Helping them navigate this new paradigm has become part of our job as parents and caretakers. It is up to us to set the same rules and boundaries for technology that we do for other aspects of their lives.

Technology is a privilege, one that they earn by demonstrating they can be responsible. This might mean they pay for use or earn screentime. They may need to show us in other areas of their lives that they have the maturity to handle some of the temptations and risks that come with technology. Or you may choose to implement boundaries that are for every member of your house, such as no phones at bedtime or at the table.

Click on the link below to read the whole article.

School Leavers

If anyone has any PBS school tops that you will no longer be needing, can you please donate these to the school to be used by students representing us at school events who do not own a school top.

Any school hats would be appreciated too 🙂

Kapa Haka Thank You

A huge thank you to everyone who came up to Otaki to tautoko our ropu on Friday at the Hui.  We all really appreciated your support at such a big event!

Tātahi Christmas Sing-along

The Tātahi Christmas sing-along will be held on Thursday, 14 December 2.15pm outside Rooms 19/21 if fine.  It will be held in the hall if wet.  

Recent Student Achievements

Tennis:  Congratulations to Josh Crabb from Rm 14 who has made the Top 8 at the Primary School Regional Tennis Champs.  Well done Josh!

Future Student Achievements

If your child has an achievement you would like us to share in our newsletter, then please send details (and a picture if you would like) to

School Leavers - Notice re ezlunch / Kindo School Shop

If you are leaving our school, here’s some information to make your changeover streamlined for all your students.

School Leavers – Notice re ezlunch / Kindo School Shop 

  • If your family is leaving our school and has been using ezlunch or Kindo, please make sure to stop any regular automatic payments that have been set up before the school year finishes.  You may also need to transfer or close your account which can be done as follows: Not sure if your new school is using Kindo?  If you’re not sure if your new school is using Kindo, you can either ask them directly or go to “My Details” in your Kindo account and click on the list of schools to see if your new school is listed.    
  • New school IS using Kindo.  If your new school is using Kindo, simply click on the new school from the list in “My Details” of your Kindo account and you’ll be attached to the new school’s menu.  Any balance on your Kindo account will remain available to spend with the new school.  
  • New school is NOT using Kindo, or you no longer need Kindo.  If you need to close your Kindo account, use the “Close Account” button within the “My Details” section of your Kindo account.  You can either withdraw your account balance or choose to donate your balance to the school.  Please note that all withdrawals will be made via electronic payment to your New Zealand bank account. Kindo is unable to process cash withdrawals.   

If you are wanting to withdraw your Kindo account balance or make a donation that exceeds Kindo’s threshold (currently more than $10,000 total within one year), Kindo may need to undertake some identity checks on you to comply with its obligations under the Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Countering Financing of Terrorism (CFT) Act 2009.  Please action the withdrawal or donation in your Kindo account as outlined above and if these AML checks are necessary Kindo will advise of the next steps required in this regard. Kindo has endeavoured to make this process as pain-free as possible and appreciates your patience.  

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