Te Totara Primary School - Growing and Learning Together

Kia ora Te Totara families


This week Mrs Stewart and I took part in a Ministry of Education  Zoom meeting regarding a new toolkit that has been issued for schools on ‘Managing Covid 19.’ This information has been developed as we move forward into the new Covid Protection Framework (the traffic light system) which starts in our community tomorrow, when the Waikato moves into orange. 

The Ministry of Health and Education have agreed schools will retain their existing COVID-19 settings until the end of the 2021 calendar year. The COVID-19 Protection Framework settings will come into effect for all schools from 1st January 2022. This means that we will remain in our current Alert Level 2  with the cautious approach that we are maintaining. At Te Totara we know we can manage this level in a very safe manner until the end of this school year on 14 December, so we will all be able to enjoy a well-deserved summer break of fun with friends, family and more events. That will be worth the wait.

When we return in February 2022 we will come back in the new Covid Protection Framework the Waikato is in.   The toolkit about ‘Managing Covid 19’ gives schools very specific guidance steps of what to do if there is a positive Covid case confirmed at the school. As we learn to live with Covid in the community the guidance outlines different actions for schools depending on the closeness of the contacts. We will have responsibilities for the Ministry of Health and also for our community in this situation. It is likely that communications to you all regarding any outbreak will come from myself as school principal but I will also be liaising with the Ministry of Education and Health. As always the safety of our students, staff and families are at the forefront of any decisions I make. I thought it was important to give you all a little information about the process as we move ahead to live positively with this virus.

As always our best defence is the high vaccination status within our community. At this Zoom meeting the Director of Education in the Waikato, Marcus Freke spoke about vaccinations for 5-12 year olds and he said this would be likely to be rolled out early next year. Another important level of protection for our learners who are more vulnerable in an outbreak. I will keep you updated as I hear more in these areas. It will be good to be more protected so we can finally return to more community involvement on site, whanau at school, assemblies, celebrations ...all the events we are unable to have now, that celebrate our special Te Totara school family.


Nga mihi

Anne Fraser - Principal


As indicated in previous newsletters we have had to cancel a number of our traditional year end  events. The evening Celebration and entertainment by our cultural groups and teams are unable to be safely held this year due to the numbers we host. We usually have 2,000-3,000 people on the back field for a couple of hours. Under current Covid settings unfortunately this is not possible this year.


We also had to cancel our annual Year 6 Leavers Supper which is a celebration of our Year 6 students attended by staff and family members. As we have 142 Year 6 students, with staff and family this event would have been over 400 people, so not possible this year.

We are disappointed at not being able to honour our wonderful Year 6 students in the usual fashion. We have an alternative arrangement planned for them and the staff.   On Friday 10th December the students are able to come to school in their ‘best clothes’ for a ceremony and morning tea to honour their time with us. This will start just after 9.00am and conclude with a morning tea for the students provided by the school.  As families are unable to be present due to Covid restrictions we will be recording the event to put on YouTube for families to see.

In the second block on that day the students will be able to change into suitable clothes to enjoy our annual ‘water play’ that is keenly anticipated by our Year 6 leavers. This is also the day when our Year 6 students will be able to get their shirts signed, if they have the permission of their parents for this to occur. 

The students will still need to wear appropriate unmarked uniforms for the last 2 days of the school week in Week 9, so they will either need to have a spare school shirt for signing or use another type of shirt after checking with you.

If there are any questions about the special day planned for our Year 6 students please don’t  hesitate to contact your child’s teacher or the Team Leaders: Mrs Robertson in Marama and Mrs Lingard in Milky Way.



A Learning Plan for each student will be uploaded to the online Parent Portal at 3.30pm on Friday 3rd December, 2021However, if your child started at school in Term 4 (or late in Term 3) you will not receive a Learning Plan yet.

We will send you an email on Friday 3rd December by 3.30pm using the email address we have on file, this will contain your User ID and Password details for the Parent Portal.  Once you have successfully logged-in, we recommend you change your password.  Please check your spam or junk folder for this email if you do not receive it.

You can download a copy of the Learning Plan from the Parent Portal and save it to your computer.

If you do not receive an email with login codes, please contact Marise Crow by email at receptionist@tetotara.school.nz

The work involved in developing these Learning Plans is immense and reflects our goal of developing a personalised plan for each student.  Much thought and consideration has gone into these Learning Plans. We have managed to include a lot more of each child’s comments and goals, to ensure they have an increased sense of ownership of their Learning Plan.

We strongly advise that you:

  • Go through the Learning Plan with your child

  • Look especially at the “Where To Next” and “Goals set by Student, Parent and Teacher” sections and incorporate these into supporting learning at home.


From 3.30pm on Friday 10th December 2021, the Parent Portal is where you will find your child’s class for 2022.  Further details will follow in next week's newsletter.

For those families who will not receive a Learning Plan for their child/ren, you are still able to log-in to the Parent Portal to see their class for 2022.

Log onto your @school Parent Portal  http://www.atschool.co.nz/

Enter your user ID and Password 

  • Go to My Child

  • Click on Contact Details and “Class for Next Year” will be displayed after midday

 Latest TT TV Episode

Term 3 Week 10

Here is the latest episode of TT TV starring Neptune 25, Neptune 27 & Marama 13.  Enjoy!

ERO Report

In November 2017, ERO visited our school. This is the Government agency that reviews all schools to examine the quality of education provided.

Click the link to view the details of the report.