Newsletter:  Week 3, Term 3, 4 August 2023.

Together We Grow  – Ka Tupu Kotāhi ai Tātou

Kia ora whanau and caregivers,

Welcome to our  Week 3 newsletter.

Star Spot – Celebrating Student Learning

A huge OVS congratulations to our R.U.R.U award winners for the last two weeks. 

Kayley, Rbaley, George and  Mackenzie  are being recognised for being fantastic students and for their outstanding mahi at our kura. Congratulations to you all!



Celebrating languages at OVS – Cook Islands 

This year’s theme for ‘Epetoma o te reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani – Cook Islands Language Week is ‘Ātuitui’ia au ki te au peu o tōku kāinga Ipukarea, which means, “connect me to the traditions & culture of my homeland”  To acknowledge and support this celebration, students form OVS learnt, practised and performed 2 traditional dances at assembly today. Check out our performers below!


One of the huge strengths of OVS is the wonderful tone, culture and behaviour of our students. This doesn’t happen by accident in a school. It happens through cumulative years of great PB4L work (Positive Behaviour For Learning) and it has huge benefits.  Quite simply put, the less time teachers spend on behaviour and issues, the more time they spend on teaching and learning!  Last year we asked our students and parents to give us feedback on our existing school R.U.R.U. values to help us undertake a PB4L  refresh.  As part of that refresh the OVS PB4L team have engaged in a variety of professional development days, reviewing and redesigning internal systems, organising Board presentations and lifting the Positive Behaviour For Learning programme across our school for 2023 and beyond. 

We have now had time to collate all of the parent, student and staff ideas and while most values remain the same there is one significant change, and that is the addition of our new value RESILIENCE. The ability for our students to process and overcome challenges.

So…we are proud to now bring to you our new collective R.U.R.U. values.

Respect – Whakaute

Unique – Tūhāhā

RESILIENCE – Manawaroa

Up to me – Māku Ake

We have also developed 3 broad descriptors for each value (check it out on the following poster) and we will be working through defining these with students over the remainder of the year. Our next steps include reviewing our school wide acknowledgement systems, which we are trialling in some rooms.  – watch this space!

Staff Update

Sadly, we farewelled the wonderful Michelle Barlow whose last day at Otaika Valley School was Friday 28th of July.  Michelle has been our amazing Teacher Aide since Term 4 last year as well as one of our After School Carers since the start of this year.   We will miss Michelle and wish her and her family all the very best in their new life back in England! We extend a warm welcome to Jacqualine Findlater who brings with her a fantastic variety of skills, and she will be joining Otaika Valley School on Wednesday 9th of August as our new Teacher Aide!  


Thank you so much for all your support since we started back up in T3 last year.

In 2022 we raised roughly $5500. We used a small amount of the existing funds and were able to fund the following:

  • 2022 and 2023 classroom grants ($4800) 
  • 2022 and 2023 Hall Use ($800) 

Our goal this year is to raise money to fund: 

  • 2024 classroom grants
  • 2024 Hall use
  • 2024 Camp Subsidy.

We would love to hear your thoughts on what you would like the PTA to fund. We’re interested in hearing about cheaper items we can buy this year, as well as larger long term projects. We would appreciate it if you could please take a couple of minutes to complete these surveys.

Parent Survey

Student Survey

What’s coming up…

Keep the evening of Thursday 14th of September free!

Time to dust off your dancing shoes, seek out that sequin shirt, and pull out the polka dot pants because it’s… DISCO TIME!!!  More details will be sent out soon.

Property Development Update

We can confirm that on Wednesday 30th of August, work is scheduled to begin upgrading our old school block, including Rooms 3&4. The estimated renovation will continue into term 4 with full completion expected by early January 2024. As always,  any construction work within a school environment creates some disturbance, and our main priority is ensuring that any disruptions to teaching and learning are minimised. Initial works will include removing asbestos from the old school block and whanau can be reassured that current construction practices ensure this process is strictly managed from a health and safety perspective.  We are excited to finally have this upgrade to our students’ learning environments and will keep you updated as work progresses.

Student Enrolment Notification

If you have a child that is due to start in 2024/2025 please contact the school as early as possible to help with our planning. In addition, if you know someone who is intending to enrol, please ask them to contact us at the earliest opportunity.

Caregiver, Emergency Contact Details & Student Information

Please ensure you let the office know when your and/or emergency contact details have changed so that we can update your child’s information in the school’s student database.

If there are legal proceedings and documentation relating to your child that the school needs to be aware of, please inform the principal and your child’s class teacher and provide a copy of the documentation to the office.

Nursing Community Survey

We are a group of second year student nurses who are completing a project as part of our Population Health paper .. We have created these questions below to help identify any health issues regarding the Whanau in the Otaika Valley Community.  From the results of this survey we will look at trends and patterns to identify the main health issue in your community. We then aim to then develop resources or tools that could help improve these issues. 

With the support of Ōtāika Valley School we would also like to present our findings to any participants that were involved in our research. Our designated date for this is Wednesday August 9th. The presentation would be 30 minutes long with question time to follow. This is scheduled for 3.10 pm at Ōtāika Valley School.

All participation is anonymous and voluntary.

If you feel comfortable completing the survey please follow the link below.

Please feel free to share this link with anyone in the Ōtāika community.

Ngā mihi

Tamara Sparksman and Olivia Cyprian.


School Photos

Lights…camera…say cheese!  Liz Davies will be taking individual, family and class photos at the Otaika Hall on Wednesday 29th of August.  Your child has been given an order form to take home with them this afternoon.  If you prefer to order online, click on  Please ensure you place and 

pay for your order by Tuesday 28th of August.  

Cross Country

With cross country coming up, students have been in training mode for this year’s event which will be held at Waiotira Domain on Friday 25th of August.  All whanau are welcome to come along and support their child on the day!  More details and permission forms will be sent out closer to the time.

Named Spare Clothing & Lost Property

It’s been great to see students making the most of the sunshine and playing out on the field lately.  Unfortunately for some students, they have no change of clothes and have to wear their muddy clothes for the rest of the day.  Please ensure your child brings plenty of their own named spare clothes in their bags.  With that in mind, please remember to check the lost property which is getting quite full.  The lost property is inside the wheelie bins that are located next to the Room 5 steps. 


Ag Day – Lambs We need you!

Only lambs that are born after the 1st of July will be eligible to enter the competition and must have had their 1st vaccinations before bringing their lamb to school.  A school parent has offered to help with vaccinations if required.  

All lambs to be registered before bringing them to school.  Please contact the school office for the animal registration form and vaccination information.  

Ag and Flower Day will be held on Friday 27th of October.

Spare Music Keyboards 

If you or know of anyone who has an electronic keyboard they no longer use and would like to donate, we will gratefully take them off your hands!!  Please contact Jen in the office.

ZOOM Pharmacy Minor Ailment Service 

Te Whatu Ora Minor Ailment Scheme has been put in place to ensure that students and their families have access to free advice, free medicines and with the ZOOM Pharmacy service free delivery to their home.

To learn more about who is eligible and what conditions are funded you can visit

Dates for your diary

Wednesday 15th August – Board of Trustees meeting (5:00pm)

Friday 25th August – Cross Country at Waiotira Domain

Tuesday 29th August – School Photos at Otaika Hall

Monday 28th  – Room 4 moving to the library

Sat/Sun 2 & 3 September – Asbestos Removal

Wednesday 13th September – Board of Trustees meeting (5:00pm)

Thursday 14th September – School Disco at Otaika Hall

Friday 22nd September – Term 3 ends 


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