Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Tomorrows Schools.

Schools have a lot to thank for when they get supportive parents. We are lucky to have a group of parents at our school who are constantly helping our school grow in opportunities.We also have a teachers who give of their own personal time to create opportunities to help our children grow.

Board Input

The Ashley School Board of trustees are wanting to know more about these National Standard things. They have organised a gathering to get Bards to ask the big questions of the MOE. What a proactive thing to do!
I think for some Boards the idea of talking to the MOE about National Standards and the direction education is heading is incredibly switched on.
There was not a great deal of consultation involved in the setting up of National Standards to start with.
Good on you all for taking such a positive stance.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Latest Newsletter

This Tuesday saw our 15 Stars go to work with their new teacher. The week has flown by and its like they have never been anywhere else. How quickly they grow up and leave the nest.
Growing up was a point of discussion at the BOT meeting last night in many ways.
The growth of the school was talked about and the property plans for the future. The school roll has grown to 180 and with a few more to come we need to plan for the future.
Growing our teachers was also discussed and the professional development plans for the future as well. It was a very productive meeting and look forward to the progress this very active Board is encouraging.

On a big sporting note we have a number of girls involved in netball finals this week. There are two Ashley club teams in the Primary finals. Primary 1 has;
• Briar Fowler
• Laura Kevern
• Paige Robinson
• Stefanie Tallentire (Court 1 at 12 o’clock)
While Primary 4 has;
• Maddison Robinson
• Loghann Gardiner
• Una Skerten (Court 11 at 9)
All these girls have worked extremely hard to get to where they are this season and we wish them all the best for their finals. Get along and support them if you can.

On Saturday the Ashley Rugby Club had their prize giving and a large number of Ashley School boys won awards for their teams.

James Mullan (most deserving)
Luke Higinbottom (most deserving), Sam Wilson (best tackler)
Tom Loughnan (most deserving), Dawson Payne (most improved).

At the Saracens Club, two Ashley Boys took their teams top awards with Jake Pascoe in the under 7s and Paddy Skerten in the Under 8s. Well done guys great effort!

For most families now this means the end of a long winter season,(was it wetter than normal?) However for the Couch family it has been extended by another 9 games as Todd has been selected to represent Canterbury Country. Congratulations to Todd who has worked hard to achieve this goal. This team is selected from all the primary schools and clubs from Ellesmere and North Canterbury and will play in a number of tournaments culminating with the South Island tournament in Christchurch. Players to play in this tournament before have been Andrew Merthens, Steve Brett and Mark Hammett to name a few.

A sport dominated newsletter me thinks! Although sport is a great analogy on life isn’t it. By working hard you can achieve your goals. It teaches you to cope when things don’t go all your way, it teaches you to compromise with other team members who you don’t get on with. Sport teaches you that even if you play your heart out you may not get player of the day and you may not get the team you want but its about the climb( Thanks Miley Cyrus), or the journey that makes you the person you are. It teaches us to deal with the failures that life will through at us, we all want to be winners but we cant be, its how we go on after a loss that defines us as people.

Monday, August 9, 2010

National standards

A friend of mine has used the analogy of a running race to describe how he believes Nationals Standards will appear for families. As he pretends to be a sporty type he has used the running race to describe this.
Imagine a race….

There is a start line but because of timing and a range of circumstances some of the racers have broken the start and have a significant lead, some are right on the line, some are behind and some well behind- none the less the race starts-sound fair?- too bad, the race is on it is 8000 metres, after every thousand metres the races are placed, a megaphone screams out their place "1st, 2nd, 3rd... last!" Some of the very slow runners actually started disadvantaged, they came in late, they had never run a race before, bottom line is they are slower runners than the first few who incidentally had run plenty of races, were well nourished, had water stops along the way, knew how to use their energy (and prior knowledge) well.
As you can imagine as the race goes on the gaps widen (how could it not?)- Coaches are allowed on the track- they do their best with every runner, those in the lead can listen, interpret and apply the new learning’s from the coach easily and use this to go even faster- those at the back are struggling with the concept of running full stop, they feel overwhelmed, they are falling further behind- and at every 1000 meters they are reminded just how far behind they are.
The race goes on, for the front-runners the finish line is in sight -as the tail-enders pass 4000 metres, by 6000 meters after constant reminders of their position in the field only the incredibly resilient of the slower runners continue.
The coaches of those who had a head start and came nourished and "pre race ready" are being publicly applauded, the winners are proud of their achievement.
The coaches of those who came to the race unprepared and well behind the start line are in for public ridicule and their jobs re at risk- why couldn't they "fix up" these runners and get them to catch up? Perhaps shouting their position louder would have helped (this is suggested by the race organisers for the future) also how about those slow runners have a wee i-pod type devise that allows them to know more regularly where they are in the race, they could also set smaller goals to help them catch up- won't this motivate them to run faster and also help the coach to do a better job?
Oh by the way when the event started none of the contestants knew it was a race- they thought it was a Fun Run, to enjoy the stunning scenery, the friendship, an opportunity to learn more about the track, the event, the joy of running- they only found out about the race after 999 meters.
Consider national standards...

About Me

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Rangiora, Canterbury, New Zealand
I have been Principal of Ashley School since 2002 and I am still learning my job.I am married with 3 children. I have a love of educating children to the best of their potential. I enjoy Rowan Atkinson, Ricky Gervais, cycling and all other sports.