20th March 2020
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He tino mihi ki te katoa,

The last two weeks have been very unsettled globally. I am grateful that the staff and students at TCAS have remained calm, on task and healthy in the face of change and possible adversity. The school will endeavour to keep you up to date with upcoming information and cancellations/postponements as and when information becomes available. Please be aware that it takes time to collate information from a wide variety of sources whilst trying to minimise the number of communications to families. Your patience is appreciated. We have created a dedicated space on our website which will be used to record all our updates. You can find the link on our home page or here:

Today, I received the sad news that both Area School Tournament and National Tournament have been cancelled. This decision has been made to protect the wellbeing of the communities involved. Now is a time to look after each other. Our teachers have been providing education and support to our students. Their focus is on teaching and reinforcing preventative measures whilst keeping our day-to-day routine as normal as possible. If you require further support, the Ministry of Education suggests visiting this site: for more information to support the wellbeing of your whanau.

We have a number of families either in self-isolation or preparing to self-isolate - if you are in similar circumstances, please ensure you contact the school by emailing to let us know the dates of your self-isolation. Having this information in writing gives the school the ability to manage circumstances as they develop and to provide accurate information to public health professionals.

Our Mentoring and Goal Setting Event planned for Tuesday next week will go ahead as planned with physical distancing principles in place. If you are concerned about meeting at close proximity at the present time, we can arrange a phone or online zoom conference if preferred. Please call the office if you would prefer a distance meeting alternative. If you, or anyone in your family is unwell, please contact us to make an alternate appointment date.

I'd like to extend my congratulations to our Year 8 and 9 class who continue to raise funds for Ronald McDonald House through their House to House Challenge. They have already raised over $800 for the cause and logged over 340km of activity! Ka pai! If you would like to donate before the 31st March deadline, you can learn more about their campaign here:

In last week's reminders, the school reinforced our no cellphones at school policy. Please check in with your child so that they understand the requirements of this policy. The policy was instituted by the Board in response to whānau requests. The intention of the policy is to maintain a settled, learning-focused environment for our students and staff, whilst protecting them from potential cyber safety incidents. Our Schoolzone internet monitoring has highlighted an issue with specific students who are using paid VPN accounts on phones to bypass our network, allowing access to blocked sites. The use of VPNs repeatedly stalls the wifi for the whole school. These students have been identified and will meet with Mr Samson next week. Apologies to all the students and staff who have experienced internet connectivity issues whilst trying to work, we hope to have this issue resolved immediately.

He waka eke noa,

Kate Staniford and the team at TCAS



Otago Anniversary Day

When: Monday, 23rd March

BoT Meeting

When: Tuesday, 24th March

Conferencing and Goal Setting (no classes)

When: Tuesday, 24th March 9:00am to 7:00pm

Otago Polytechnic Visit Y11-13

When: Wednesday, 25th March

PB4L Student Team Meeting (cancelled)

When: Friday, 27th March 2:00pm

Swimming Sports (postponed to Term 4)

When: Friday, 27th March

Grip Leadership Conferences (Y7 and Y11-13) - cancelled

When: Monday, 30th March
Location: Gore

HPV Vaccination Day Y8

When: Monday, 30th March

St John's Give a Little Week

When: Monday, 30th March

Top Team (season postponed for a Term 2 start)

When: Tuesday, 31st March

Otago Primary Triathlon (cancelled)

When: Thursday, 2nd April

For your information:


Covid 19 20 3 20

For the latest information regarding the Covid-19, please see:

Entertainment Poster

For information about the Home & School 'Entertainment Book' fundraiser, please see:

Bats And Moths For Autumn

Catriona will be going ahead with the bat walks and KCC event unless weather is bad or ALL gatherings are banned. She will, however, provide hand cleaning facilities, equipment will be cleaned and people will be able to stay a distance away from each other easily whilst still taking part. The need to get out and enjoy our natural environment for our mental health is also important!

Contact The Catlins Area School


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The Catlins Area School · 1 Stuart Street · Owaka · Owaka, Otago 9535 · New Zealand