Christchurch trip planned

Te Puke Times - - NEWS -

Te Ranga School’s in­ter­me­di­ate age stu­dents are in for an ex­cit­ing time in term 3.

The school’s Year 7 and 8 stu­dents are head­ing to Christchurch thanks to the school be­ing named one of 20 win­ners of Air NZ’s Air­points for Schools com­pe­ti­tion.

Year 7 and 8 teacher James Kerr en­tered the com­pe­ti­tion late last year, propos­ing the stu­dents visit Can­ter­bury to study the ef­fects of the earth­quake and look at how the com­mu­nity is over­com­ing ad­ver­sity re­build­ing their city.

The week­long trip will also in­volve a trip to Lake Tekapo for ice skat­ing, hot­pools and snow­tub­ing, a visit to Mt Hutt ski­field for snow­board­ing as well as in­spect­ing the sites in and around Christchurch in­clud­ing the Antarc­tic Cen­tre and Akaroa.

The stu­dents will also get to build on the re­la­tion­ship be­ing built be­tween their school and Long­beach School in Ash­bur­ton.

Te Ranga teacher Daphne Wil­liams and wha¯nau came from Ash­bur­ton to Te Matai Rd a few years ago and has or­gan­ised bil­let­ing with fam­i­lies of Long­beach School for a cou­ple of nights.

“This is a great fit as Long­beach is a sim­i­lar sized ru­ral, full pri­mary and the con­nec­tion is be­ing de­vel­oped through Skype video links and let­ters of in­tro­duc­tion prior to the visit,” says Te Ranga prin­ci­pal Bren­dan Wil­son.

Bren­dan says re­tain­ing Year 7 and 8 stu­dents has been a big fo­cus of the school’s board of trustees and has been made a strate­gic goal.

“A stand­alone in­ter­me­di­ate class en­ables us to have the crit­i­cal mass nec­es­sary to field sports teams, pro­vide com­pe­ti­tion and mo­ti­va­tion in class and en­cour­age so­cial in­ter­ac­tion with a wide range of stu­dents,” says James.

In pur­suit of this goal, James and the school man­age­ment have cre­ated the Hawk Academy, an out­doors and cul­tural pro­gramme where the in­ter­me­di­ate aged stu­dents par­tic­i­pate in at least three out of school ac­tiv­i­ties a term.

This year the stu­dents have vis­ited Water­world on the Strand, rope climbed at Adren­a­line For­est and moun­tain biked at the Red­woods.

To en­sure th­ese ac­tiv­i­ties re­main ac­ces­si­ble for all, the board has cre­ated a bud­get to sub­sidise the ac­tiv­i­ties.

The week­long trip to Christchurch for the 18 stu­dents and four adults will cost just over $100 as the in­ter­me­di­ate aged stu­dents run the school lunches once a week and clean their own block to raise funds.

Prof­its from th­ese en­deav­ours are fun­nelled into the ac­count which sub­sidises their trips.

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