Monthly Archives: January 2020

Weekly News Term 1- Week 1 2020

`Dear Parents and Caregivers
A very warm welcome to all our new families and returning families as we look excitedly to the new year and a new decade! It has been wonderful to see the girls coming in so enthusiastically and with a real energy to get on with their learning.
As a staff, we feel refreshed and ready for another busy and productive year. We had our Staff Only Day last Friday and our guest speaker was Dr Anna Friss an expert in self care and self compassion. It was a positive and thought provoking way for us all to begin the year – focusing on our own wellbeing, as well as our students. 
The mihi whakatau, Prefect’s Commissioning and Yr 13 Dinner at Tolcarne are all wonderful moments this week that have reiterated the joy in being together as a community, the optimism for the year ahead and the wonderful legacy and history that we all share.
We have had a great start to 2020 and I look forward to sharing the opportunities, successes and learnings ahead.
Jackie Barron


Athletic Sports are next Wednesday – 5th February – Girls need to be at the Caledonian grounds by 8:35 and meet their Whanaungatanga teacher for roll call.
School will be closed next Thursday 6th for Waitangi Day. Friday the 7th February will be a normal school day. 

Key Dates for 2020 Term 1

Wednesday 5th February – Athletic Sports at the Caledonian Sports Ground 

Saturday 7th March – School Fair (see below for further information)

Friday 13th and Saturday 14th March – Wanaka Show

Friday 20th March – Staff Only Day

Monday 23rd March – Otago Anniversary Day 

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Please click here for more information on weekly Whānau Group Donations

We have jars available for people to make jams and/or preserves – please get in touch with us if you are able to help.
We need more fair helpers; if you are able to help at the school fair on a stall please email:
We are still looking for fair sponsorship; a $250 donation allows you to sponsor a stall, donated items such as vouchers, goods, services are needed for our silent auction and monetary donations towards advertising.  Please email:
We need your help to have a successful fair day.

Ichikawa visit March 2020 – request for Homestay families

As you may be aware, each year St Hilda’s in partnership with John McGlashen host students from our sister school, Ichikawa Gakuen High School in Japan, for a short term visit. We are pleased to announce that Ichikawa High School will be visiting us again on Sunday 15 – Friday 27 March 2020.
We are looking for some lovely St Hilda’s families with a spare room to host one of the girls. Our homestay families will be supported, and a homestay meeting will be organised prior to the students’ arrival. Homestay families will be remunerated to cover any costs. Hosting an international student can be an enriching experience for the entire family.
Our intention is to confirm homestay families and match to students by the beginning of February.
Please get in contact as soon as possible if you are in the position of opening your home for one of our Japanese short stay students. Your help would be much appreciated. If you would like to have a further conversation around what is required, please also make contact.
Contact details:
Lisa Parsons – International Student Manager at St Hilda’s Collegiate School
03 477 0989 / 027 773 2211


In response to the feedback from the extended learning time we had throughout 2019, we have made changes to how our timetable is structured. The start and end times for the days have not changed but we have made adjustments to where we have our breaks. This will give us the flexibility to meet more diverse learning styles.

The timetable follows a  structure of two periods, chapel/assembly/Whanaungatanga followed by interval then two periods followed by lunch and then sustained silent reading followed by one period. This structure also allows for a second version of the week featuring double periods which in this term will happen every third week.

Sports Uniform Reminder

St Hilda’s new sports uniform is now available at NZ Uniforms on Moray Place.

It is compulsory for our students to have the PE top, Shorts, Trackpants, Dri fit and Hoodie. For all students who play in a weekly competition, travel on tournaments or as a PE class, these items are to be worn. No alternatives are allowed.

For students with the current style these can still be worn. Over the past few weeks, we have noticed a number of sports teams wearing a variety of shorts and trackpants that are not school regulation. If you are unsure on what these look like, then please head to the website:  http//


On Monday we held our Mihi Whakatou in the Chapel to welcome our new students and staff. This was a lovely way to start the year and welcome the new members of our St Hilda’s family.

Prefects Commissioning 

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2020 Prefects with Mrs Barron

Chapel Matters

This week we celebrated the Prefects’ Commissioning. The Prefect system at St Hilda’s started in 1906 and the girls still say many of the same words that were spoken back then. For example, the prayer that they say goes like this:

Prevent us, O Lord in all our doings with Thy most gracious favour, and further us with Thy continual help; that in all our works begun, continued, and ended in thee, we may glorify Thy Holy Name, and finally by Thy mercy obtain everlasting life, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

This is old-fashioned English which can be a little difficult to interpret! But basically, the Prefects are asking for God’s help in all that they do – in all that they begin, continue with, and complete – so that God is glorified. This takes the form of needing God’s grace to enable them NOT to do certain things, and God’s help to do the right things. For God to be glorified means that through what they do (or don’t do), others see the love, grace, justice, and kindness of God – the qualities of God are made clear and bright. Then, ultimately, they ask that they might receive eternal life, not because they have done the right things, but through God’s mercy. Eternal life is not something we earn, but is a gift of God.

Perhaps this is a prayer we might all need to say on a day-to-day basis, although I suspect we might use simpler and more modern phrasing! “God help me today, to make good choices so that others may see your grace and mercy. Amen.”


Congratulations to Lily Knox who came first in the Unpublished Poets section of the Robert Burns Poetry Competition 2020. Nearly 50 published and unpublished writers entered the annual competition, which marks the Scottish bard’s birthday on January, 25 1759.

Lily Knox
Lily Knox


of a wedding dress
that was silky to the touch until she wore it on her skin
the smoke
of a city
the gritty, spiny smoke and the streets that smelled of gin
honeyed tears she swallows as
she knows she can’t return
she yearns;
an aching for the God that only wallows in the Thames
his hand will not extend
to the crusted creaky ship
or the baby on her hip
oh mrs james inglis
whose maiden name was ingrid
torn by the wind on the salt stained deck
no more than the mermaid
lashed to the stern.
where did it go wrong

Click here to read Lily’s reaction to her achievement which was published in the ODT.

Co-curricular Performing Arts Opportunities

Footloose – Musical 2020
Auditions for Footloose will take place on Wednesday 5 February from 4pm to 6pm. All the information you need regarding performance dates and audition details are contained in the following link. Any further questions please email Mrs Mangai
Music Opportunities 2020
All students are invited to fill in this expression of interest form regarding music lessons. There are a wide variety of opportunities available and this form provides an opportunity to register interest and have a go – formal commitment to lessons will take place in a week or two. 

Tolcarne News

What an amazing first week at Tolcarne  with our Year 9’s arriving and the place a buzz with excitement, new faces and big smiles. The Year 13 buddies stepped into action taking care of the new girls.
A highlight was the Year 13 dinner with the parents. This year Sophie Borland was our guest speaker and she shared 4 nuggets 
1) don’t listen to your inner voice
2) control the controlables 
3) flex your discipline muscle
4) know adversity happens
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Tickets are selling fast for our St Hilda’s event with Company of Strangers at Akarua Wines and Artisan Kitchen in Arrowtown on February 22nd.
Tickets cost $99 and include drinks and nibbles, a fashion presentation of the A/W20 collection from Company of Strangers and a conversation with designer Sara Munro.
All proceeds will go towards the Building Heart campaign.
We wish to thank our major sponsors: Peter McIntyre and Chris Timms – Craigs Investment Partners; Jaimee Smith of Ukiyo Salon & Co, Wanaka; and Tracy Cameron of ICAN Models and Talent, Queenstown.
Ticket enquiries to


This is a fundraising initiative that current families, Old Girls and past families can support – purchase a Blue Ribbon plaque with your/your daughter’s name on it, to be displayed permanently in the foyer of the new Arts Building.

Please contact the Director of Development at to reserve your Blue Ribbon today.

Information regarding Coronavirus

With recent concerns raised regarding the spread of coronavirus, we wish to inform you that we are following the Ministry of Health Guidelines regarding best practice for public health. 

We have taken the necessary precautions to ensure the wellbeing of all our international students, when they arrived at school and at Tolcarne, and as most of them have been in NZ for at least a week prior to the start of school, they are at minimal risk of infection, however we will continue to monitor their health. We have no students from the Wuhan region.

The school and Tolcarne will be vigilant with hygiene instruction as well as providing masks as required, and hand sanitiser. They are all the necessary equipment to isolate infection. Frequent hand washing and practising cough etiquette will be encouraged. 

Recognising that coronavirus is now a global issue, if you or your family members have been travelling in Asia or currently infected areas over the holidays, or have been in contact with international visitors, we trust you are monitoring your family’s health and following the Ministry of Health guidelines.

As stated we have in place precautionary measures, and are advised that the risk of infection is still very low. We will continue to monitor the health of any students currently considered to be low risk. The Ministry of Health has advised that there is no specific action to be taken at this time. Should the situation change, we will follow our pandemic plan for managing illness as we do with other infectious diseases such as measles, mumps, and influenza.

For those of you concerned about possible infection, the Ministry of Health has provided practical information on their website which we encourage you to read – 

NoNovel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) guidance – Ministry of Health website:         
included in there is some advice to help reduce the general risk of infection:
– avoiding very close contact with people showing symptoms
– frequently washing hands
– practicing cough etiquette (maintain distance, cover coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or clothing, and wash hands).

the Ministry of Health will continue to update that content, as further information becomes available