Information Update

Everything you need to know to help you settle easily into our 2020 School Year.

Kia ora koutou. 

Firstly, a warm welcome to our new staff, students and families, we hope you have a very happy and successful time at our school. At present we have 27 new students enrolled for the beginning of 2020. 

New Teachers

We are very happy to welcome the following teachers onto our team for 2020:-

Nanette Lister: Nanette comes to us from Wellington, and has been a Lead teacher at Pamare Primary School in recent years. Prior to this she was at Eastern Hutt Primary School. Nanette brings a wealth of educational knowledge and Leadership and has collaborative and Digital Technologies experience, along with Lead Teacher of Positive Behaviour for Teaching and Learning (PB4L) in all areas, that will be a strength as we develop further in these directions. Nanette will be teaching a Year One class in the Taupiri Syndicate.

Tim Ross: Tim joins us from Post Graduate training. He qualified originally with a Degree in Commerce but gained a passion for teaching after he tutored students at Rhodes University in a Management paper and then travelled to Taiwan to teach English. Tim taught English for four years, two of those as Head Teacher in a collaborative learning environment. Tim also brings a love of sport and languages to our school. Tim will be teaching a Year 5 & 6 class in Pukeatua Pod.

Hollie Cooke: We are very pleased to welcome back a past pupil to our school. Hollie will also be teaching in Maungatautari Syndicate with a Year 5 & 6 class in Te Akatarere Pod. Outside of teaching Hollie is a passionate sports woman and has played at premier levels in touch rugby, lacrosse and equestrian. Holly is also the Head Waikato Lacrosse Umpire for high school and club levels and she coaches the Under 15 Girls Waikato lacrosse team, that has recently competed in Australia.  

Deena Parr: Since completing her Teaching degree Deena has been relieving at Mihimihi, Hamilton East and Hamilton Christian Schools, while completing a Graduate Diploma in Theology at Laidlaw College. Deena has also spent time in Singapore at West Grove Primary School, looking at assessment practices whilst on a directed study. 

She has taken specialist papers in Dyslexia and hopes to study further about Autism. Deena will be teaching a Year Two class in Taupiri Syndicate for 2020. 

Staff changes:

Stacey Yuen: Stacey is on maternity leave at present and has decided to resign her position at our school to be a stay-at-home mum for her beautiful son. This means she won’t be returning in Term 2. We thank Stacey for her two and a half years as an energetic and highly efficient Syndicate Leader for Pirongia Syndicate. At present Lisa Murray is acting in Stacey’s position. 

Ilse Lock: We are very sad to announce that our lovely Ilse Lock will also not be returning in 2020. Ilse was very sad to leave us and only found out on the last Thursday of term that she would be leaving us, but she has opportunities to progress her career in the Christian Schooling System and this is very important to her. 

Jennie Jarvis: We are very pleased to announce that one of our wonderful parents, an experienced teacher, Jennie Jarvis, has stepped in to rescue our situation and will pick up Ilse’s class at the start of Term 1 in  2020. 

Tamsin Bradding: Tamsin will be returning to our school in 2020 after her big Family OE, and will be joining Jennie Jarvis in Rimu 7 on Fridays, as well as teaching alongside Paula Dunton in her Year 5 & 6 Class during her release time as In School Leader and Maungatautarui Syndicate Leader.  

After School Care Staff:- 

We have a number of new young faces who will be supporting with the staffing of After School Care in 2020. The new look team comprises many past students and all are studying at the University of Waikato, so rosters will fit around lecture demands. Many of these staff have been working during Term 4 already. We welcome Kate Anderson, Libby Cumming, Lauren Dexter, Nina Mackay, Josh Boyd, Jordan Boyd, Ellie King & Grace King.

Our School Structure and Organisation 2020

Below you can see the school structure and staffing for 2020. Each year our structure looks slightly different depending on Ministry funding for staff and student cohort numbers. This year we will, as with some previous years, be again having three clear Syndicates with Maungatautari having only Year 5 & 6 classes and Pirongia taking all Year 3 & 4 Students.  In Taupiri we again have the numbers to have three straight Year 2 classes and three straight Year 1 classes to start the year. Our Year 0 students will join us in cohorts at the start of each term and also, in line with the new legislation in mid term intakes. Ministry dates are shown later in the newsletter. We are expecting to open a new class in Term 2, with Mrs Christy Paladin and another in Term 3, with the possibly of a further one in Term 4. This year (2020) on the gender front, we have more boys in our Maungatautari Syndicate (senior school) and our Pirongia Syndicate (middle school) is significantly girl heavy. Our overall structure with the support of Board funding allows, we hope, space for the expected growth across all areas of the school. 

Other staffing changes we have made: 

As explained in last week’s newsletter; our three Syndicate Leaders will be moving around, with Mrs Paula Dunton taking on the Leadership of Maungatautari Syndicate, where she used to teach a few years ago. Mrs Leah Mills will be taking her senior knowledge to the Pirongia Syndicate and Lisa Murray will continue as Acting Syndicate Leader, joining the Taupiri team, an age she knows well. These changes will lead to stronger transitions and connectivity across all levels of the school. A few other teachers will be changing Syndicate levels as well, to gain different experiences. 

Mrs Annette Howard has won a Study Award for the 2020 University year and will be with us on a part-time basis, as she completes her studies at the University of Waikato. With Mrs Paula Dunton Leading the Senior Syndicate, Mrs Jo Metcalfe will be taking over the Reading Recovery position and will be in a walking position, supporting staff in other areas as well as taking our Tamahere Tupu transition to school group.

Maungatautari Syndicate will be working in a collaborative learning and teaching style, as they have this year in their ‘fit for purpose’ Innovative Learning Environment (ILE). Our Seniors will also be using their Ipads and Chromebooks as part of our Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) programme. In 2020 there are 6 home classes. 


Maungatautari Syndicate 6 classes of Year 5 & 6 
Pukeatua Pod Te Akatarere Pod
Yr 5 & 6 

Karaka 15

Yr 5 & 6 

Manuka 16

Yr 5 & 6

Mahoe 17

Yr 5 & 6 

Pukatea 14

Year 5 & 6

Miro 13

Year 5 & 6

Tanekaha 12

Miss Jacqui Murphy  Mrs Paula Dunton

Syndicate Leader 

Mr Tim Ross Ms Carla Ballantyne Miss Hollie Cooke  Mrs Mandy Searancke 

NB names from the two other peaks on Maungatautari Mountain – Pukeatua = 753m  and Te Akatarere = 727m.


Pirongia Syndicate – 5  classes of Year 3 & 4  
Yr 3 & 4 

Nikau 1

Yr 3 & 4 

Kauri 2

Yr 3 & 4 

Kawakawa 3

Yr 3 & 4 

Kowhai 4 

Yr 3 & 4 

Matai 11

Miss Nicola Spence Mrs Leah Mills

Syndicate Leader

Mr Brendan


Miss Laura Grant Ms Ann Marie Copponi


Taupiri Syndicate – 6 classes to start the year  – 3 classes of Year 1 & 3 classes of Year 2
Year 1  

Pohutukawa 8

Year 1/0  

Rimu 7

Year 1/0

Titoki 6

Year 0

Puriri 5

Year 2

Rata 9

Year 2

Totara 10

Year 2

Tawa 19

Year 0

Harakeke 18

( Term 3)

Mrs Hayley


Mrs Jennie Jarvis Mrs Nanette Lister Mrs Christy Paladin

 (Term 2)

Mrs Nicky Platje Miss Deena Parr Mrs Lisa Murray

Acting Syndicate Leader

New Teacher

In 2020 we will continue to operate the cohort system for our New Entrants who will have an 8-week induction before attending school as a group. The new legislation for 2020 mandates a mid-year cohort as part of the enrolment process.  


Regular Classroom Release Teachers
Mrs Bridget Hawthorn

Mrs Tamsin Bradding

Mrs Paula Greaney

Mrs Bridget Hawthorn

Mrs Gillian Stantiall

Mrs Gail Weston

Mrs Kerry Bennetts

Mrs Margaret Daly 

Mrs Hayley Shaw

Miss Irene Tolich  

Ms Kat Karadshi



Leadership / Administration
Principal Miss Waveney Parker
Deputy Principal & Special Needs Coordinator  Mrs Lee Boyd
Assistant Principal – Part-time in 2020 – (Annette has won a Study Award and will be focused on her study at Waikato University for most of her 2020) Mrs Annette Howard
Administration Secretary Mrs Lisa Laurence
Financial Secretary Mrs Lisa Boyd
Office Wiz Mrs Heather Wilson
Librarian Mrs Theresa Kewish 
Caretaker / Property Manager   Mr Allan Wickens

Mr Stuart Doran


Teacher Aides Before & After School Care
Mrs Rachel Coxhead Mrs Karen Taylor
Mrs Rosemary Dexter Mrs Jeannetta Brough
Mr Tony Emmerson Mrs Suzie Bolton
Mrs Gillian Joe Miss Rebecca Rodriguez
Mrs Theresa Kewish Miss Lauren Dexter
Mrs Vicky Foden Miss Libby Cumming
Ms Heather Wilson Messers Josh and Jordan Boyd
Mrs Christine Woolley Miss Ellie King & Miss Grace King 
Miss Kate Anderson


Music Tutors
Mrs Gill Earwaker Piano / Keyboard
Mr Darcy Perry Ukulele & Guitar
Mrs Chris Young Violin / Strings
Music House Guitar, Ukulele and Drums
Mrs Kirsty Proctor Vocal Tuition
Excite Music Academy Guitar
Mrs Catherine Wallace Flute, recorder, clarinet, sax and music theory lessons.


Board of Trustees
Jeremy Waters Chairperson / Personnel / Property
Owen Culliney Communication / Legal
Ian Potter Property / Health & Safety
Angie Millar Community / Personnel
Vanessa Parker Personnel / Sponsorship / Communication
Ingrid ter Beek Finance / Personnel
Kate Searancke Cultural Diversity / Legal
Annette Howard  Staff Representative


PTA Leaders
Mike Calvert Chairperson
Leah Shallcrass Treasurer
Amyliz Lonsdale Secretary
Julie Koekemoer Pumpkin Night Coordinator
Howard Baker Golf Co-ordinator

School Dates for 2020


1 Monday 3rd February Thursday 9th April A Teacher Only Day will be held on Monday 2nd March

Friday 10th April – Sunday 27th April (includes Easter and ANZAC Day)

2 Tuesday 28th April Friday 3rd July A Teacher Only Day will be held on Friday 12th June

Saturday 4th July – Sunday 19th July

3 Monday 20th July Friday 25th September A Teacher Only Day will be held on Monday 17th August 

Saturday 26th September – Sunday 11th October

4 Monday 12th October No later than Friday 18th December We are expecting to finish on Thursday 17th December 

Teacher Only Days

Over the next three years, the Government has given all schools an extra eight Teacher Only Days above what we normally use. This was part of the Teacher negotiations and was given to reduce teacher workload and give separate times for Professional Development so teachers have more time in their workdays. The impact though will land on our families and we do apologise for that. We will try and link some days with the Middle and High schools where possible and also weekends. In 2020 we are planning to take two of the eight extra days.

We are letting you know now so that families can plan in advance. Our first Extra Teacher Only Day will be held on Monday, March 2nd when Paula Jamieson, our facilitator, is able to fit us into her schedule. We will be having Paula Jamieson facilitate her creative learning ideas with us that link Inquiry Learning, Experiential Learning and the new Digital Technologies Curriculum into one package, linked to STEAM – Science, Technology, Arts and Maths. We are very much looking forward to this day with Paula.

We will be taking our usual Fieldays Friday Teacher Only Day and linking with our Hillcrest Kahui Ako Schools to learn more about the Maori History in our area linked to Ngati Haua. That will be on Friday 12 June 2020.

Our 2nd Extra Teacher Only Day will be on Monday 17th August. We will be having a follow up with Paula Jamieson and our Digital Technology Curriculum Work.

Our First Two Teacher Only days will be on 30th & 31st January before our Term Starts. On these days we will be finalising programmes and organisation along with Kia Puawai facilitators leading us further with Mindfulness and team building.

Stationery Packs for 2020

Available online from Friday 20 December 2019

Ordering your stationery pack online:
1) Go to:
2) Follow the prompts to complete your order.

You must place your order BEFORE 21 January 2020 to ensure delivery before school starts on Monday 3rd February 2020.

The school office does not hold a large amount of stationery, so we will not be able to supply packs directly for your child. If you prefer to purchase items in-store, please print off a list from our website Please note that if you do not know your child’s class at this stage, please purchase a stationery pack for the year level appropriate.

· Take advantage of the free delivery by “buddying up” with another family to ensure your order is over the minimum spend.
· Our school receives rewards for all stationery purchases made through OfficeMax.

School Donations / Activity Fees and Other Costs in 2020

School Donations / Activity Fees and Other Costs in 2020


At Tamahere Model Country School there are two different donations/fees that help support learning.


The school depends on School Donations to fund operations, facilities and learning to the high standard expected by our families.  Many additional facilities and opportunities are only provided to students due to the extra funding generously paid through the School Donations.

You may have heard that the government will be paying school donations of $150 in many schools from 2020. Decile 10 schools have been left out of this option as the Government knew it would disadvantage our schools and put us further behind. 


Understanding the real need for School Donations:


The Big Picture and Government funding:

  • Tamahere Model Country School is considered a Decile 10 by the Ministry of Education and School Funding by the Government is determined by this decile rating, of which 10 is the highest.
  • If we were a Decile 1, the school would receive approximately $990,000 in Government funding per year.
  • The reality is, as a Decile 10 School we receive approximately $550,000 per year, around 50% less than a Decile 1 School.
  • We have to try and make up the difference in this funding to be able to offer the facilities, teaching and support staff and resources that we all want our tamariki to enjoy and benefit from, in order to offer them the learning opportunities we want them to have.
  • School Donations and various fundraising initiatives by our wonderful school community, are the two main sources of funding to supplement what is provided by the Government.


What that means for Tamahere Model Country School:

  • The Board of Trustees chooses to fund additional teacher time.
  • The Board of Trustees chooses to match government-funded teacher aide time.
  • The School owns a number of buildings over and above Ministry owned buildings, including the library and After School Care block, that we are responsible to maintain.
  • The School is over 135 years old and the infrastructure continually needs replacing, maintenance is high and there are immense challenges to keep pace with exceptional growth in the role.
  • Unfortunately, when operating funds are tight it’s the additional-curricular spending that suffers.


Where does your School Donation go?

Your School Donation is added to the School’s budget to support our learning programmes.  In the past year School Donations have allowed us to fund an additional teacher, provide additional teacher aides in classrooms, and maintain school buildings and grounds.  As well, sports equipment, books, musical instruments and materials for artwork are all school items paid for by your School Donation.


The 2020 School Donations are:

  • $240.00 per child for the school year

This is just $60.00 per child per term (or pro-rata depending on enrolment date)


Activity Fees

Activity Fees are the second contribution and this covers specific costs related to cultural, academic and sporting activities that we undertake throughout the year, e.g. bus costs, visiting acts and entry fees. We have had to increase the Pirongia and Maungatautari fees by $5 in 2020 due to increased costs such as buses. 


The Activity Fee does not include camp costs or end of year trips.


This fee alleviates the need to constantly ask parents for small amounts of money during the year.


To ensure our students can enjoy the various activities throughout the year that extend and support their learning, we kindly request that all Activity Fees are paid by the end of Term 2 please:

$45.00 – Taupiri Junior Syndicate

$60.00 – Pirongia Middle Syndicate

$70.00 – Maungatautari Senior Syndicate

(or Pro-rata depending on enrolment date)


Swimming Pool Levy

The Swimming Pool Levy is $20.00 per child per year.  This money contributes to the ongoing maintenance of the pool facilities.  The Vela Pool Complex, which opened in November 2017, allows us to offer increased swimming opportunities for our students, significantly above the level that was possible with the old ministry provided pool.


Tamahere School uses Seesaw, a digital portfolio that gives your child a safe place to record what they’re learning at school and share that with you.  The cost for Seesaw is $5 per student for the year, which covers the licence cost for the programme.

Cyber Safety

School Manager – Family Zone

As a school, we are implementing a school and class manager system called ‘Family Zone’ that provides our school and families with increased digital awareness, education and safety.  This system has many benefits for both the school and our families. Teachers and parents have greater options to manage children’s devices and the ability to set these up for safer learning and monitor this with increased ease and visibility.  The beautiful feature of Family Zone is that parents also have the option to set security and management boundaries in their home with any device tool that connects to the internet (including phones, laptops, ipads, xbox, netflix..) to the level that a school can in their school environment.  There are several options available to families which can be found on the website link listed below. We will be sending home further information about this portal at the beginning of 2020.   

Vela Pool Complex

We are trying to make community access easy for 2020. Anyone may pay and follow our lifeguard and cap rules over the summer holiday period and weekends during most of Term 1. Families can enjoy using the pools between 1pm and 6pm daily from 6th January 2020. Just pop down and pay individually or get a discount with a concession card. 


Before/After School Care –

For 2020 the hourly rate will continue to be $7 per child for After School Care. After School Care goes through to 5:45 pm daily. We have a $10 per session charge for Before School Care. This is a 7 am until 8 am service.  Capped rates will continue to be used to keep overall costs at reasonable levels for our families.


Automatic Payments

You may wish to set up an Automatic Payment to spread the School Donations and Fees across the school year. Payments can be made to the account below (please note your child’s name in the reference field):           


Tamahere School



Please note you will be notified/invoiced early in Term 1 for the School Donation, Activity Fee, Pool Levy and Seesaw subscription.

Did you know you can apply for a tax rebate from the Inland Revenue Department for your voluntary school donations?

You may be able to get a rebate of up to one-third of the voluntary school donations you have paid if you:

  •       have earned taxable income
  •       lived in New Zealand at any time over the tax year
  •       are an individual (not a company or partnership for tax purposes), and
  •       have paid voluntary donations to a state or state-integrated school


Please contact Lisa Boyd in the School Office to make payments, set up automatic payments and for information on how to apply for tax deductions.

Fundraising achievements:-

Huge thanks go to our PTA and their dynamic fundraising teams who in 2019 ran very successful events including Pumpkin Night, The Golden Ticket Ball, Quiz Night and Gold Day. The PTA has raised $40,000 for the Playground improvements we are working towards. We hope to raise a further $30,000 next year to realise our goal.  


We are very excited that the Ministry will be building two new spaces for us in 2020 along with special needs toilet area. We may also be able to achieve a third space to go alongside After School Care if we are allowed. One new space will become the well overdue Staffroom and finally all our staff should be able to sit down at morning tea together. The old staffroom will  make space for a bigger sick bay and much needed meeting rooms used by e.g. learning and speech specialists, court appointed child lawyers and psychologists.

We look forward to a happy and successful 2020

Tamahere Model Country School Board of Trustees

Music & Kid’s Clubs

We have a variety of music and other extracurricular opportunities available for 2020.  Itinerant tutors visit our school offering lessons in guitar, ukulele, piano, drums, singing, violin to name just a few.  Classes are also offered in Gym, Spanish Lessons, Drama and Singing and a full list can be viewed on our website – Go to News → Notices & Permissions/Music and Kids Clubs).

If your child is continuing lessons or you wish to enquire about your child starting up with a tutor, please contact them directly using the list on our website. (As noted above).

BYOD – Yr 5 & 6

Year 5 & 6 students have been provided with a letter and further information on BYOD for 2020 a couple of weeks ago.  This can also be located on our Tamahere School Website.  To sight this you go to the website homepage and click on the link at the top saying – ‘Our Learning’.  Next click BYOD. In here you will find everything you need to know about BYOD.

Camp Dates

  • Maungatautari Camp for our Year 5 & 6 Students will be at Tui Ridge on the Mamaku ranges from 10th – 13th March 

     For further information on the Senior camp click here

  • Pirongia Camp – for our Year 4’s camp will be held at Finlay Park on the shores of Karapiro from 20-22nd May 2020.

Police Vetting:- All parents wanting to be a parent helper on one of our camps need to be police vetted to be considered. Please pop into the Office with two forms of photo ID and sign a form. This can take a few weeks to process so you need to be in early.

New Entrant Cohort Entry

In 2020 we will continue to operate the cohort system for our New Entrants who will have an 8 week induction before    starting school as part of a group. This structured support and entering as a group is providing a great platform of support for our newest learners entering our school. 

Official Ministry Cohort Entry dates for our New Entrant families:


2020 School Dates Start Date *Cohort Mid Term Date End Date
Term 1     Monday 3 February Monday 9 March Thursday 9 April
Term 2 Tuesday 28 April Tuesday 2 June Friday 3 July
Term 3 Monday 20 July Monday 24 August Friday 25 September
Term 4 Monday 12 October Monday 16 November No later than

Friday 18 December

*This date is the mid-point between the start of term and the start of the next term. From 1 January 2020, changes made to the Act (through the Education Amendment Act 2019) take effect so that:

  • Children will be able to start school in cohorts but only after they have turned 5
  • There will be 2 entry points per term, one on the first day of term, and one at a mid-point during a term.

This means that from 1 January 2020, students under 5 will no longer be able to attend school as a part of a cohort. Only children over 5 will be able to start school on the first day of term, or at a mid-point during a term.

School Uniform

We look forward to seeing all our students proudly wearing their correct school uniform in 2020. Please ensure that all uniform items are clearly named. If you do find that you need to purchase new items of uniform before the start of term, our school office will be open from Tuesday 28 January 2020, between 9am – 3pm for the week. 

Please remember that our TMCS wide brim or bucket hats are compulsory during Term 1. The school holidays are a great time to organise for children’s names (first name and first letter of surname) to be embroidered on the back of their school hats. This costs only $8.00 each!  Not only is this an extremely competitive price, but the investment in purchasing only one hat and eliminating the need for several replacements, more than pays for itself. This is not just for brand new hat purchases but existing hats too! 

To make an order please bring your child’s hat to the school office with your $8 payment (or order a new one for a total of $28).  This can take between 1-2 weeks, so please order as soon as possible.

Holiday Office Hours

Our administration team will be starting their well earned break from today (Friday 20th December). The office will reopen on Tuesday 28 January 2020 between 9am – 3pm for the week.  We invite families to purchase uniform items at this time and ask new families to finalise their enrolment details, if they have not already done so in this week (including providing all necessary documentation), prior to the first day of school on Monday 3rd February.

We hope you all have a wonderful holiday 

and a very happy Christmas

Te Harinui

Keep safe, and we look forward to seeing you all on 3rd February 2020.