A Message From The Principal

Kia ora, Malo e Lelei, Talofa Lava, Kia Orana, Bula, Ni sabula, Mauri, Suosday, Sat Sri Akaal, Tajba Filghodu, Xin Chao, Ni Hao, Guten Tag, Mabuhay, Sawadee, Kumusta, Fakaalofa lahi atu, Maith, Sawubona, warm greetings to you all.


A special welcome to new students and their families – Darius Canlas

We also extend a huge welcome to our new Parish administrator Fr Sherwin Lapaan.  May God bless you all on your new journeys.


BOT Nominations close on Friday 24th May at noon

NZEI Strike Day – Wednesday 29th May – School will be CLOSED

Uniform Shop Open Second Hand only31st May, 14th June, 28th June 8:30-9:30am
Rugby U35’s gameWednesday 22nd May
Strike Day 

Strike Day 29th May – please remember to make alternative arrangements.

BOT meeting21st May, 25th June 7:30pm
Sausage Sizzle24th May
Catholic Schools Day28th May,  Rooms 1,6,7,9,10,11
Netball Field Daychange of date to 30th May
Queen’s BirthdayMonday 3rd June
Teacher Only DayTuesday 4th June – NO SCHOOL
Movie Night – Trinity Church Hall14th June 6PM
Hockey Field Day25th June, Saving Day 27th June
Sausage Sizzle28th June


Our condolences go out the the Gulla family who has had a family member pass away in the Philippines.


Congratulations to the Lordon family on the safe arrival of a baby boy, baby brother for Rithika.

Congratulations also to Sr Marie our Pastoral assistant of St Mark’s Parish for approximately 18 years.  We have sent her a card on behalf of our school.


The Trustee Elections are the biggest democratic event in New Zealand, with more than 15,000 parent representative seats needing to be filled around the country.  Could you be a Trustee?  YES, if you: care about your child’s education, work as part of a team, want to help make decisions for our school, are willing to share your experiences and skills, have common sense.  How much time is required?  As a Trustee you are part of a team so responsibility is shared.  People put into the job what they can.  There are 8 regular meetings that require some preparation beforehand.  The Board has elected Kerrie Hunt as the Returning Officer at the March Board of Trustee Meeting.  Nominations for the above elections will now be accepted.   Nominations close on Friday 24th May at noon.

All potential trustees are invited to the Board of Trustees meeting which is being held in the staffroom on Tuesday 21st May at 7:30pm.  This is a good opportunity to come along and listen in on the meeting before nominations close on Friday at noon.  All welcome.  The meeting dates for the rest of the year are:  21st May, 25th June, 20th August, 24th September, 29th October and 26th November.

ENROLMENTS FOR 2019 or 2020

Sancta Maria enrolments close on the Thursday 30th of May for 2020 enrolments.  They will not be accepting any late enquiries so please get your Year 6 children enrolled for next year.

If you have a child who will turn five in 2019 or 2020 please come to the office and get an enrolment pack or let us know and we can send it home with their older sibling.  It is very helpful to know numbers for our future class planning for 2019 and 2020.  We would really appreciate having this information early.


A Prayer for Autumn Days

God of the seasons, there is a time for everything;

There is a time for dying and a time for rising.

We need courage to enter into the transformation process.

God of autumn, the trees are saying goodbye to their green, letting go of what has been.

We, too, have our moments to surrender, with all their insecurity and risk.

Help us to let go when we need to do so.

God of fallen leaves lying in coloured patterns on the ground, out lives have their own patterns.

As we see the patterns of our own growth, may we learn from them.

God of misty days and harvest moon nights, there is always the dimension of mystery and wonder in our lives.

We always need to recognize your power-filled presence.  May we gain strength from this.

God of harvest, and fields of ripened grain, many gifts of growth lie within the season of our surrender.

We must wait for harvest in faith and hope.  Grant us patience when we do not see the blessings.

God of life, you believe in us, you enrich us, you entrust us with freedom to choose life.  For all this, we are grateful.



“I acknowledge that Jesus Christ lives in me” (2 Cor 13:5)

“Yes, Father, it is true.  You have graciously will it so”  (MT.11:26)

I love myself unconditionally, because God my father loves me now as his own

It’s good to be me.  I’m very happy to be me.

I’m loved, therefore, I’m loveable.

I never devalue myself with destructive self-criticism.

I always value myself with constructive self-appreciation.

My body is home of the Holy Spirit.  I accept it, I like it, and I reverence it.  I thank God for it and I rejoice in its ever increasing wholeness.

I rejoice in my own uniqueness and give others the same right.

I have unconditional warm regard for all people at all times.


On Wednesday 29th May there will be a National Teacher Strike Day.  The school will close for the whole day.  SKIDS (before and after school care) will be open for business but at as cost to you.  There are only 30 spaces available and priority will go to those who attend regularly.  Please phone SKIDS – Charlotte Kemp on 027 230 8846 if you would like to your child to go to SKIDS on this day.  School will resume as normal on Thursday 30th of May.


Catholic Schools Day this year is being held at Star of the Sea on Tuesday 28th of May.  Children from rooms 6,7,1,9,10 and 11 will attend.


St Mark’s School has a policy of no Birthday celebration food to be bought to school, ie. no birthday cakes, sweets, drinks, shared food etc.  Due to the risk of students with allergies this is the schools policy.  Thank you for your understanding.

IMPORTANT:  Please ensure you use our one way system in the carpark.  Be polite, be patient, let cars back out of their car parks.  Set an example to our children.  Thank you for your co-operation.

IMPORTANT:  Please ensure that you and your children use the school crossing.  Please do not stop in the middle of the driveway and let your children out.  Please park your car first.  Also please ensure that all children are using their own seat belt and booster seat.  New Zealand law states that all children must be restrained, not sat on the lap of another passenger.   Booster seats must be used until the child is 148cm tall.  Please keep your children safe.

Image result for child in booster seat graphic

Also please ensure that if you are chatting with other parents after school, please ensure that your child/ren remain sitting on the seating area provided.  It is far too dangerous for them to be running around play tag etc with cars moving about in the carpark.  The school is responsible for their safety while on the school ground and ask that you help us to keep your children safe.  Thank you for your co-operation.

GOOD NEWS/PB4L (Positive Behaviour for Learning)

We follow Jesus through showing a positive Attitude, Behaviour and Care and our 3 R’s.

Previous weeks focus has been:  Respect for others:  Waiting my turn, Listen to others in classroom and playground, WAIT to speak, Move quietly, respecting others space.

This week’ focus is:  Respect for Self:  Keep hands and feet to myself and Respect for OThers:  Using kind words and actions.

We would like to congratulate the following students who have been recognised at assembly:

Respect for Others: Aaron Chan, Bailey Robson, Mikhayla Townsend, Samantha Radich, Tommy Derejian, Aden Karl, Joshua Ernstzen, Noah Hamilton, Angel Pallewatte, James Bremner, Justin Real, Jeffrey Gulanes, Fletcher O’Brien, Lucas Antonio, Room 1 Librarians, Ean Siao, Franco Antonio, Julianna Valdez, Bea Ubaldo, John Toguay, Mizuki Takada, Joseph Mafi, Olivia Yang, Marie Tsang, Grant Dumlao, Valentina Wells and Sherene Rolle.

Respect for Self:  Arianna Neems, Sarah Ernstzen, Alice Prendergast, Ava Margison-Butler, Hannah Winsor,

Respect for the Environment:  Georgia Wilson, Lilly-Grace Massey

Ka pai rawa!

Catherine Rivers – on behalf of all staff at St Mark’s Catholic School



Measles is a highly contagious disease that can be life threatening. Find out what the symptoms are and how immunisation can protect you and your family.  In 2019 there have been outbreaks of measles in Canterbury, Auckland and Waikato.  Cases have also been reported in the Bay of Plenty, Lakes, Northland, Capital and Coast and Southern DHB areas.  See 2019 measles outbreak for more information.

  • Measles is highly contagious – and easily preventable.
  • It affects both children and adults.
  • Two doses of the measles vaccine provides the most effective protection for yourself, your family and the wider community. After one dose of the MMR vaccine, about 95% of people are protected from measles. After two doses, more than 99% people are protected.
  • In New Zealand, if you were born in 1969 or later, you can get the measles vaccine for free.
  • Vaccination is particularly important if you are planning to travel anywhere overseas – to protect yourself and to help prevent outbreaks in New Zealand.

Measles is a highly infectious airborne virus which affects both children and adults. If you think you have measles, it’s important to call before visiting your doctor to avoid you spreading the virus in the waiting room.

If you’re feeling sick, you should stay away from work, school or public places, to help prevent putting other people at risk.

This also applies if you or a family member aren’t fully immunised and may have been in contact with someone with measles.

By isolating yourself you will help protect vulnerable people including babies, pregnant women, cancer patients and others who are unable to be immunised and for whom the impact of the disease can be devastating.

You are contagious 5 days before to 5 days after rash onset, counting the day of rash onset as day 1.


On Wednesday 26th of June Home Language Speeches will be held in Room 5 at 1:35pm.  Parents of participants are welcome to attend.


School starts at 8:50am every morning and finishes at 2:50pm each afternoon.  The office will be open from 8:30am to 3:30pm each day.  Children should arrive from 8:30 onwards and be ready in class by 8:50am.  Please ensure your children are at school on time and collected on time.  Also please ensure your child remembers to pack their lunchbox in their school bag.  Thank you for your support.


Room 1 and room 11 children will use the front carparking/court area in the winter Terms 2 and Term 3.  This area will be blocked off from 11am to 2:40pm for PE at playtime and lunchtime use.  Please park at the side or front of the church during these hours.

Please ensure that senior students (Year 4-6) have their PE gear with them every Friday.

EDUCATION PIECE – Year 3 Writing

Writing for fun

  • Talk about interesting words with your child, especially ones that are fun to say, like “hippopotamus” or “ringaringa”. Short and simple games could involve finding how many little words can be found using the letters in the word ‘elephant’
  • Work together on the small word games found in the children’s section (or word section) of the newspaper
  • Make up a story or think of a pakiwaitara (legend) or traditional tale and act it out with costumes and music, write down the names of the characters or tïpuna (ancestors)
  • Make up a play with your child. You could help your child to write the play down. Use puppets they design and make themselves to give a performance to the family

Here’s a tip – keep writing fun and use any excuse to encourage your child to write about anything, any time.

Writing for a reason

  • Writing for a real purpose can help your child want to write.For example, writing invitations, typing emails or writing and posting small notes
  • Personalising notes by cutting, decorating, sticking or stamping are great skills for coordinating fingers and being creative. Postcards are a good size for a sentence or two and they are cheap to post, too
  • Encourage your child to write what they need to pack for a holiday, dictate your shopping list to them, or get them to write a list of jobs that need doing.

Here’s a tip – talk about what your child writes. Be interested. If you don’t understand what your child’s picture or story is about, ask them to explain.

Supporting your child’s writing

  • Talk to your child about what you are writing – let them see you making lists, writing emails, filling in forms
  • Keep envelopes, banking slips, forms you don’t need so that your child can do their own ‘grown up’ writing
  • Display your child’s writing where others can admire and read it
  • Play with words. Find and discuss interesting new words – this can help increase the words your child uses when they write – look words up in the dictionary or on the Internet or talk to family and whānau members to learn the whakapapa (origins) of the words.

Here’s a tip – be a great role model. Show your child that you write for all sorts of reasons. Let them see you enjoying writing. You can use your first language – this helps your child’s learning, too.


As you know parents had their first session  to support their child in making their 1st Communion.  Children who are enrolled will start on 26th of May at 4pm.

Calling all members of St Mark’s to attend upcoming 11 week Alpha course starting 30th May.  Ever wondered if you need to know your faith a bit more.  Come and see.  Course starts Thursday 30th May 2019 at the Parish Centre at 7:30pm.  Contact ZMike Lobo on 390 0048 or 021 280 9285 if you need to know more about the Catholic Warrant of Fitness.  Email address:  mlobo@titan.co.nz

Pope Francis “Prayer for the Earth” preparing for World Environment Day 2019.  All-powerful God, you are present in the whole universe and in the smallest of your creatures.  You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.  Pour out upon us the power of your love, that we may protect life and beauty.  Fill us with peace, that we may live as brothers and sisters, harming no one.  Amen.    Let us celebrate nature:  Take the time to marvel at her beauty.  Visit  a local park, beach or volcanic cone – try a new path or cycle way or just rejoice over nature for her beauty and for all she provides us with.  Let us consider what we can do practically to live a sustainable lifestyle and in this way protect Earth.


Entertainment books went home with students at the end of last term.  These are available in book form or digital form.  At $70 each they are fantastic value.  If you do not wish to purchase the Entertainment book, please return it promptly.  If you do wish to purchase the book please fill in the slip enclosed in the envelope and return it with the envelope to the school office asap.  If you wish to purchase the digital form, please follow the instructions on the notice enclosed in the envelope.  Thank you for supporting our fundraiser!


We now have some new school ties available from the onsite school uniform shop or from the school office.  They are $13 each.

New school uniform can be purchased from NZ Uniforms, Bishop Dunn Place, Botany South.


Please be advised that if you do unsubscribe from our newsletters, you will not receive any notifications if ever there was an emergency, ie. lockdown at the school.  If you do unsubscribe accidently please resubscribe.


Term 2 Monday 29th April to Friday 5th July (Mon 3rd June Queens Birthday)

Term 3 Monday 22nd July to Friday 27th September

Term 4 Monday 14th October to Friday 13th December (Mon 28th October Labour Day)


Our Parenting Talk about Internet Safety on the 14th of May with guest speaker Pauline Spence was really informative.  So many helpful tips on keeping our children safe on the internet.  Here is there top 10 tips for parents.


Online safety for parents is more important than ever. As young people begin to spend more time online, it’s important that parents start to teach them how to stay safe. So, how do you get started? Check out our 10 things to think about below.


Talk to  your child about the type of behaviours you’d like them to adopt. For example, how long they should spend online, what apps and social media sites you’d like them to use and what is appropriate content to view. This will be different depending on the age of your child, and what you feel comfortable with. Technological options like parental controls can help, but it needs to be teamed with online safety education.

Find out more about how much time kids should be spending online.

Find out about how to use parental controls.


Talk to your kids about what they’re using the internet for. What’s involved? Who’s in their network? What information do they share? Are they using the internet to learn? To communicate and create friendships with others? To create music or videos? Really listen to what they have to say – what might seem like ‘just a game’ to you, could in fact be a way for them to connect with people who have similar interests.

Showing an interest in the things they do helps to build your understanding of what their online world looks like and creates an environment that makes it easier to have more difficult conversations about in the future.


You need to understand the technology to better understand the challenges that young people face online. Explore the websites and apps your child uses to improve your knowledge, and take the time to read terms and conditions. You could even ask them to show you how it works, as a way to start conversation around online safety.

As a start, check out our guide to Snapchat for parents.


How often do you use your laptop or smartphone at the dinner table? How many angry posts have you published? Take a look at the way you use technology while young people are around. If you see something that troubles you – change it.

How good is your knowledge abound online safety, privacy settings and even online shopping?

Be better equipped to help by expanding your own knowledge – read the Staying Safe Online Guide.


Once your knowledge is up to scratch, teach them the basics of online safety – here’s four ideas of what to start with.

1. Strong passwords

A strong password helps protect the information in your on online profiles or accounts.

Teach your child how to choose strong passwords, by reading how to choose a good password.

2. Information to protect online

  • Login details and passwords
  • Bank account details
  • Home address
  • Phone numbers
  • Birthdate
  • Personal information that could be used to guess security questions for online accounts

You should also talk about personal details they could share online, such as where they are and the school they attend. This includes sharing their location – some apps allow you to share your current location with friends, or publicly.

3. Not everything is as it seems

It can seem like common knowledge to adults, but sometimes kids don’t understand that people are not always who they say they are online. Talk to them about friending or communicating with people they don’t know offline. For young children especially, they shouldn’t friend someone online that they don’t know personally offline.

4. Digital footprint

Teach your child that they need to think about what they post online, and that what they post online leaves a “digital footprint” about them. Find out more about digital footprints.


How old should kids be before they get social media accounts? The minimum sign up age for Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and YouTube is 13. Of course, if they’re under the age minimum it’s always better that they’re honest with you about using an app or site, rather than doing it behind your back. This way, you can help them to stay safe online.

Tips for setting up social media accounts

  1. Make sure you’ve taught them the online safety basics above
  2. Help your child to set up the account
  3. Depending on their age, use your email address to sign up
  4. Enter their actual birth year so they’re less likely to see inappropriate content
  5. Become their friend, or follow them
  6. Teach them about the safety tools available


Most social media organisations have a safety centre with tools for staying safe online. Take a look at the safety centres of the apps or websites your child uses, and teach them how to use the tools available.

Start with how to block people, how to report content and how to use the privacy settings.

Social media safety centres

Facebook • Snapchat  • Instagram   •YouTube    • Twitter   
Facebook Snapchat instagramYoutube Twitter


One in five young people in New Zealand have been the target of online bullying. Teach your child what to do if they’re targeted online, so they have the tools to deal with it if it happens. Ask them what advice they’d give a friend who was experiencing online bullying. This is a good way to understand how they would deal with these kinds of situations if they were to experiencing it themselves.

Make sure you also talk to them about how you expect them to behave towards others online.

  • Let them know that if it’s not acceptable offline, it’s not acceptable online
  • Ask your kids to think about the person on the “other side” of the screen
  • Lead by example – think about how you’re behaving toward others online

Find out more about how to deal with online bullying.


When it’s appropriate you should talk to your kids about the risks of sharing personal information and sexual images and what can happen to those photos or videos once created and shared.

Find out more about sexting and how to deal with it.


Let them know the options that are available to them – talking to a trusted adult, their school or Netsafe. We have a team of friendly people offering free and confidential advice for everyone in New Zealand. We can help young people with online bullying, abuse, harassment and other challenges they might face online. Let them know we can help.

If they come to you for help, count to ten before you react. When young people ask for help from adults, it’s important to understand this was a big decision. If you overreact or take away the technology, then you’re less likely to be the first port of call next time something happens. Focus on fixing the issue, not on punishing or confiscating their devices.

If you need help or advice, about any online issue you can contact Netsafe.

0508 NETSAFE (0508 638 723) – help@netsafe.org.nz – netsafe.org.nz/report




“The Marian Centre, CATHOLIC KINDERGARTEN” – This Kindy is situated in the heart of the Eastern Region of the Diocese of Auckland.  It opened in 1999, on St. Luke’s Day and it was blessed by our Bishop Patrick Dunn D.D. in the year 2000.  The Marian Early Childhood Centre is an Apostolate of the Catholic Diocese of Auckland and it is  located in Panmure beside St. Patrick’s Church.  We cater to children from 2 to 5 years of age.  The Centre operates Monday to Friday from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm.

The Kindy was created for and has been faithfully serving, the young children in the Catholic parishes of the Catholic Diocese of Auckland in the East..  We are a Catholic Early Childhood Centre and we follow the Catholic Early Childhood Religious Education Curriculum Statement.  Our programme is guided by the Catholic Liturgical Calendar and focuses on Catholic values and virtues.  Please phone: 5705690 or visit Cyril at 19A Sunset View Road, Panmure.


Piano/Keyboard lessons are available after school.  They are held in the Music Room by Mrs Ruth Leafberg on Mondays and Wednesdays.  Lessons are from 2:50-3:20.  Small classes of up to 6 students.  Price is $8.50 per lesson.  Phone Ruth on 576 7406 to enrol.


Ever wondered if you need to know your faith a bit more as parents?

You are invited to attend a 1 week ALPHA Course.  The course starts with a dinner on Thursday 30th of May 2019 at the St Mark’s Parish Centre at 7:30pm.  Find answers to life’s hard questions.  Contact Mary Waldron on 576 3657 or 021 046 8015 to register.

GUITAR LESSONS AFTER SCHOOL:  Suitable for 6 years and older only.   Would you like lessons with a music tutor with many years of teaching experience? You can enroll your child in guitar or ukulele lessons at St Mark’s School!

We deliver a fun varied and structured curriculum. Students learn songs in styles ranging from traditional to contemporary. For more information please contact Jordan Morrison on 021 132 7024 or at jordan.morrison@musiqhub.co.nz

Ezy Lunch – copy link below to view their menu – https://shop.tgcl.co.nz/shop/pdf/school/st_marks_catholic_school_pakuranga/Menu.pdf

Sunday June 9th, we have joined forces with Hampton Downs who are long time supporters of the John Walker Find Your Field of Dreams Foundation, and Papakura Athletics to host a 2 Hour Race Track Run. The event is open to all ages and fitness levels for runners and walkers, and provides such a unique opportunity to challenge yourself on the 2.7 km motor sport race track.  All proceeds go to the Foundation to support our Flagship Programme – Community Swim, which promotes Water Skills for Life.  There are great prizes to be won, so check out the official event page for all the details and how to enter.