A community of
lifelong learners
who make a difference

General Information

Enviroschools

We are a Silver Enviroschool. The philosophy of caring for our environment underpins our teaching and learning programmes.

Edible Garden and Orchard

Our school participates in the Edible Gardens programme. All pupils spend time in our vegetable garden with our garden facilitator. Classroom literacy and numeracy programmes support the learning from the gardens. We also have numerous fruit and nut trees and berry plants throughout the school grounds. The pupils were involved in planning and planting the orchard. They are now involved in maintaining the orchard and harvesting the produce.

Chickens and Bees

Several years ago, students initiated projects including raising chickens and bees. Pupils now care for 6 chickens and several thousand bees. Pupils manage the financial responsibility of egg and honey sales. Our honey is called ‘Big Bush Honey’ after the original name of the Grovetown area.

Recycling

Our pupil recycling team is responsible for school recycling and overseeing the community recycling facility located on Vickerman Street. We also collect old cell phones, oral care packaging (any brand), Nespresso coffee machine pods, yoghurt pouches (any brand) and can tabs and wine bottle lids for recycling.

Home Learning

Developing the ability to read and a love of reading is crucial. We ask that pupils read regularly and learn how to spell essential words. A holiday reading programme is also available to help minimise the slide of progress during breaks.

Learning for Life

Learning for Life is an optional award programme completed mostly at home. It is designed as an alternative to worksheet type homework and to encourage learning in a wide variety of contexts. Pupils complete age appropriate activities on a wide variety of topics and work towards earning a badge. Many of the activities are based on things your child may already be doing e.g. belonging to a sports team, swimming lessons, baking etc. Pupils complete an activity in each of the following categories:

  • Physical
  • Our Environment
  • Academic Achievement
  • The Arts
  • Making a Difference
  • Self Management
If you would like more information, please talk to your child’s teacher

Assemblies

School assemblies are held several times each term. Come and share our children's successes. The time may change each term depending on other activities. Please check with one of the staff.

Swimming at School

Learning to swim is one of the most important things that a child will learn. All pupils are expected to take part in swimming instruction, which means that they bring their togs and towel every day. As the weather can be changeable please send swimming gear even if the weather makes swimming look unlikely.

Leadership

Numerous opportunities are provided for pupil leadership across the school. These include: presenting assembly, big brothers and sisters, MAD Team, librarians, recycling, looking after chickens and bees and being class chairperson.

Stationery

All requirements for the children's stationery are held at the school, and we find it is convenient to supply the children as needs arise, and send home an account for items supplied at the end of each term. However, if you wish to provide the stationery yourself, please let the school know

Bikes & Other Wheels

Pupils are welcome to bring bikes to use on our school bike track and other wheels (roller blades, scooters, skateboards) to use on the tennis court. Helmets and shoes must be worn on all wheels.

Parent Support Group (PSG)

Our parents support groups plans and organises fundraising to support our school. The group generally meets each term and new parents are always welcome. In recent years the PSG has funded swimming lessons, water safety programme, leadership conference, unicycles, Jump Jam, iPads, P.E. equipment and much more.

Clothing

Grovetown School does not have a uniform but we ask that children wear clothing appropriate to the occasion. Naming of clothes is important - it helps us return the unclaimed items. During the summer months the children are required to wear a school uniform hat when outside. Attractive school shirts are available from the office. During each holiday break any unclaimed clothing will be donated to charity.

Parent Help

Assistance in the classrooms is always welcome. If you would like to help on a regular basis please speak to the class teacher. You are welcome to visit classes at most times to share the activities with your child.

Money

When children need to bring money to school for Book Club, trips, account payments, etc, it must be secured in an envelope with the child's name and the purpose for the money written on the outside. All money and return slips are to be taken to the office. Internet banking is also possible.

School Meetings

Meetings for parents and teachers are held on occasions throughout the year. The meetings are to keep parents informed on curriculum matters, school activities and B.O.T. activities. It is also an opportunity for parents to put forward other matters that will assist school routines and the development of the school.

Contacting the School

We welcome all parents to the school to visit or talk to a staff member. The office is open from 8.30am to 12.30pm each day. We do ask that an appointment be made with the appropriate person if that matter is important. This will ensure that you receive their undivided attention and that the children's learning is not interrupted.

Toys

Please encourage your child to leave toys and games at home. Items bought for sharing at oral language or topic time can be looked after by the teacher. Toy Day is held on the last Friday of each month. Children are welcome to bring their toys from home on this day on the understanding that they do so at their own risk.

School Bus

A bus operates each day transporting children from the Dillons Point area. The run begins at Rowberrys Road at about 8 am, arriving at Grovetown School about 8.15 am. The afternoon run departs the school at 3.15 pm. Children living along the route are able to use the service, subject to M.O.E. School Transport regulations.

Use of School Grounds

Children are welcome to play in the school grounds outside school hours (at their own risk) but must go home after school closes and not return until after 3.30 pm. We encourage children (and any members of the community) to report any misuse of the school grounds and buildings.

New Entrants

We encourage all new entrant children to visit Opawa Room before they start school. These visits help both the children and their family to become familiar with the school and its routines. It is recommended that the children begin their visits 2 weeks before they start. These visits will be arranged with Mel, the teacher of new entrants. A caregiver is expected to stay for the first visit. New Entrant pupils will be buddied with a school ‘big brother or sister’ from the senior class.

Four forms are required to be completed and/or brought to school on enrolment day.

  • Enrolment Information form
  • School Health Record (blue card)
  • Immunisation Certificate (available from your doctor)
  • Copy of the birth certificate

Daily Timetable

  • 8.15 am. Bus arrives
  • 8.30am School opens for non bus children
  • 9.00 am. Classes commence
  • 10.30am – 11.am. Morning tea
  • 12.40 to 1.20 pm. Lunch break. If children are to go home for lunch please let us know
  • 3.00 pm. School finishes
  • 3.15pm Bus leaves

The best time for pupils to arrive at school is around 8.45am (excluding bus children). This gives them time to unpack their bags, prepare for the day and chat to their friends and their teacher. It is upsetting for learning and classroom routines if children arrive last for school.

Absences

It is a legal requirement that children attend school when it is open unless they are sick. Parents need to be aware that absences have an impact on a child's education. In the interests of child safety we request a phone call before 9.00 am if your child is not attending that day, particularly for a child walking or cycling to school. If the absence is more than a minor one it may be helpful to the school to discuss the matter with the class teacher. All absences are legally required to be explained.

School Donations

Voluntary school donations are $10 per term per child. Parents will be advised in advance of any activities incurring a charge.

Newsletters

These are issued on Tuesdays and sent home with the oldest child in each family. They generally cover those events from both the school and the Board of Trustees that are of interest to parents. If there are any questions that are not answered by the newsletter, or any other information that is required, please contact the school. Return slips are taken to the school office.

Food at School

We sit down to eat morning tea and lunch. Please ensure your child has enough food to sustain them for the day. Children are expected to eat healthy food first and have any sweet treats next if they are still hungry. Food that is uneaten will stay in their lunchbox. Please help us by providing a spoon for yoghurt and saving takeaways and fizzy drink for at home. From time to time lunch orders are available. Please check with Debbie in the office.

School Policies

The school has its Charter and a range of policies covering important aspects of the running of the school. These may be viewed at any time. Please contact the Principal.

School Poilcies

The school has its Charter and a range of policies covering important aspects of the running of the school. These may be viewed at any time. Please contact the Principal.

Health and Safety

Every effort is made to reduce risks and ensure safety for all. There are a number of identified risks in our school environment to be aware of including bee hives, chickens, nut trees, wild parsnip and trees for climbing.

Class Trips

We often request parents’ cars to assist with any group trips away from the school, while on other occasions a bus may be used. For such trips we may ask for a donation from each child to help meet the costs involved. Where parents offer to assist with transport by providing a car, we issue a declaration form for the driver to sign. This is to help us provide safe transport for children.

Children under the age of 7 are required to be in a car seat.

Book Club

The Scholastic book company offers a book purchasing service to children and parents, through the school. Throughout the year the Book Club issues advertising material so selections can be made and orders placed. If ordering, children bring their completed forms and money to school in a sealed and marked envelope. The school then orders the books which are returned and issued within about 10 days.

Smoke Free

We are a smokefree school. We ask everyone to assist us by refraining from smoking on the school grounds.

Swimming Pool

The pool usually operates from December until late March. The pool is available for community use outside school hours. Families wishing to obtain a key can purchase one from the school office.

Curriculum

At Grovetown School we follow the NZ Curriculum. We aim to provide an holistic programme with a balance of literacy, numeracy, life skills, outdoor education, the arts, science, social sciences, technology and health. We strongly believe in the value of authentic real life learning context and incorporating child led learning wherever possible.

Plant Nursery

We have a plant nursery on our school grounds. This is used to grow native trees for the Grovetown Lagoon Restoration Project. Pupils have the opportunity to be involved with potting plants and tree planting at the Lagoon. Our next step is to gather seeds to raise in our nursery.

Reporting to Students and Parents

Reporting to parents on child progress and achievement is carried out formally twice each year. This includes written reporting and student led conferences. Outside these formal report occasions teachers are always willing to discuss a child's education with the parent, at a convenient time.

Any matters of concern should be brought to the school's attention immediately so that they can be discussed and solutions reached.

Mad Team (Making a Difference)

Our MAD Team is made up of pupils and staff. Parents are welcome to be involved too. The committee works to improve the physical, social and mental health of our school. If you have any issues or suggestions you would like the committee to consider, please see one of the staff.

Out of Classroom Events

The school is often involved in sporting and cultural events at other schools or venues in the community. These include athletic and swimming meetings, drama and musical presentations, and P.E. skill development sessions. All children are encouraged to take part, and parents and friends are always welcome to attend and support their children.

Wairau Schools Cluster

Grovetown School is part of the Wairau Schools cluster along with Tua Marina School, Spring Creek School, Rapaura School, Blenheim School and Mayfield School. Pupils regularly participate in combined sporting and cultural events as well as leadership camps and extension programmes.