Principal's Blog: Term 2 Week 1
Friday, 21 April 2023
Kia ora whānau,
Welcome to the beginning of Term 2. I hope the school holiday period has been restful and that the season of Easter brought the soulful rejuvenation that comes from spending quality time with loved ones. The extension to the break that has come from the timing of ANZAC Day has provided additional respite, with the extended break arriving at a serendipitous time given a resurgence of Covid, and the hope that the holidays have served as a circuit-breaker. That said, it is a stark reminder that we continue to live through the pandemic, coupled with the inevitable cold and flu season that is upon us. To keep everyone as healthy as possible, I implore folk to keep the spread of infection at bay by remaining at home when symptoms present. This extends to participation in co-curricular activities; whilst understandably disappointing to sit out, it is a shared responsibility to keep all in our community well.

We are thrilled to be beginning the term fully staffed and look forward to welcoming newcomers at pōwhiri on Wednesday 26 April. We welcome Deputy Principal, Jenny Caldwell, Director of Sport, Rosie Kirkpatrick and IT Technician Harsh Prajapati. Additionally, we welcome all of the new students who are starting Term 2 with us at Marsden Primary and in the Upper School. We know that the welcoming culture of the Marsden community will have all newcomers feeling warmly embraced and that they will be well looked after and cared for as they transition into our supportive family environment. 

As predicted, the education conversation continues to be kicked around as the political football we expected it to become, and the tempo is really heating up. Marsden continues to be ahead of the game with our commitment to doing the basics brilliantly and keeping class sizes smaller being a cornerstone of our offering since forever ago. To continue to be at the forefront of academic rigour right where it matters most, we have recently introduced the Structured Literacy approach in our Primary School, along with Pr1me Mathematics. And in the Upper School, to complement our existing targeted programmes, our Year 10 students are currently preparing for the NCEA Literacy and Numeracy co-requisite assessments, and we are in the throes of determining our iteration of the new NCEA, which we have committed to implementing at Level 1 in 2024. Spoiler alert, we’re keeping it. High stakes teaching, learning and associated assessment holds currency at Marsden, and we are excited at the prospect of further strengthening our unapologetic educational standards within our culture of care and encouragement of individual excellence.

Our May 7 Open Day is proving to be hugely popular, with a higher number of registrants than usual at this early stage. We know that Marsden families are wonderful ambassadors, and that word of mouth is the number one reason that families choose investing in a Marsden education for their child. Please encourage anyone who might be interested in learning how a Marsden education could benefit their child, by inviting them to come along and view our offering first hand. Registration information can be found here. Please also be reminded of our Referral Scheme, which brings benefits to both the referrer and the new Marsden family. We hope you take full advantage of the discount, which is our way of saying thank you for your loyalty and continued support.

I look forward to welcoming everyone back to school on Wednesday, and encourage a moment of pause and reflection on ANZAC Day in respect of brave and selfless New Zealanders who made the ultimate sacrifice in fighting for our freedom. Lest we forget.