Newsletter – Week 8, Term 2 2024

                                         Week 8, Term 2, 2024 Kia ora koutou Parents and BDS Whānau,    Our Kapa Haka performed at the Owairoa Marae on Saturday as part of the celebration for the 

Read More

Announcement : 

SchooI Board Parent Election 2022 – nominations close on Wednesday 3 August at 12 noon. Election day is Wednesday 7 September. Please follow this link for more information:

Newsletter, Week 1, Term 1 2023

Kia ora koutou BDS whānau,                                                                  Week 1, Term 1, 2023


Welcome to 2023 at our Botany Downs kura. We look forward to welcoming our tamariki back to school tomorrow (Thursday 2 Feb). Thank you so much for your patience and understanding while we followed directions from the Ministry of Education to navigate the recent weather emergency. 

We are ready for school and teachers have been busy planning engaging programmes for an awesome time of learning.

We have had a large number of tamariki enrolling last week and we extend a special welcome to these tamariki and their whānau. We look forward to meeting you all.

You will have received a welcome email from your child’s teacher and the team newsletter will be sent to you on Friday. This will include further information about each team. All staffing and classrooms have been included again in this newsletter below.

Our teacher-only days have been a very valuable learning time for professional development from Julie Shumacher. We also unpacked our refreshed BDS Values as well as our new Capabilities and how they will be reflected in everything that we do and learn at BDS. Thank you very much for completing our surveys last year to help us establish our new school Values and Capabilities. We look forward to providing further information around these as we implement them in our school.  (See our new values and capabilities below). 

The holidays have been extremely busy with the progress of our six-classroom rebuild. The fencing is organised and all of our gates are able to be used for arriving and leaving school. We have met with the development team and the ministry to ensure all our health and safety protocols are in place. As you will already be aware we no longer have a bus bay.  This area is for staff car parking only. It is blocked off by our new haul road and it is also going to be turned into more parking for staff before the end of the year.

Terms One and Two will also be busy as we build our new replacement playground for the seniors (see design below), build an addition to the junior playground for climbing, install the turf for our third canopy, and the holes in our netball and basketball courts created by the trucks will be filled in.

We are all looking forward to our Whānau Picnic and Meet the Teacher this year. Bring a blanket and a picnic and come and meet other BDS whānau before meeting the teacher in their room.

Ngā mihi nui,
Vicki Parkins, Principal – Tumuaki (

2023 Term Dates

Term 1 – Thursday 2 Feb – Thursday 6 April

Term 2 – Monday 24 April – Friday 30 June

(Teacher-Only Day – Monday 24 April, ANZAC Day – Tuesday 25 April)

Term 3 – Monday 17 July – Friday 22 September

Term 4 – Monday 9 October – Friday 15 December 

Coming up @ BDS…

Tuesday 7 Feb – PTA meeting
Wednesday 15 Feb – Jester’s Pie Day / School Board meeting, 6pm
Thursday 16 Feb – Whānau Picnic & Meet the Teacher

Whānau Picnic & Meet the Teacher 2023

Thursday 16 February – 5 pm – 7.00 pm 

Meet the Teacher Times:

Between 5 – 5.30pm: Drop in and meet Mrs Keenan in ESOL room

5.30 pm: Junior school classrooms

6.00 pm: Middle School classrooms

6.30 pm: Senior School classrooms

7.00 pm: Year 5 Camp meeting-Room 11

Staffing for 2023

Principal: Vicki Parkins
Deputy Principal Years 4-6: Mark Insley
Deputy Principal Years 0-3: Joanne Hughson
Learning Support Coordinator: Susan Heath
English Second Language Teacher: Kate Keenan

Executive Officer: Trish Toussaint
Office Administrator: Aroha Bishop
Librarian/Resources: Vanessa Hatley-Owen
Caretaker: Paul Laloli
Gardener: Colin Maisey 
Teacher Aides: Wendy Willetts, Tash Ferguson, Nancy Marston, Lucy Agius, and Kirsten Hartnoll


Our Values – Refreshed Values

Respect – Manaakitanga

Relationships – Whanaungatanga

Resilience – Manawanui

Responsibility – Kaitiakitanga

Our Capabilities

I am Curious
A curious child uses their passions and interests to explore the world around them with a wondering mind. They ask questions to guide inquiry and develop next steps. They experiment, use tools in a variety of ways to sort thinking and develop understanding. Ākonga gather and analyse data to find answers to their questions and share their learning effectively. 

I am a Communicator
Ākonga are active participants in designing their learning and can share this. They can seek and act on feedback and feedforward using a variety of assessment tools. Ākonga reflect on their learning. They show an awareness of their audience and can effectively communicate using a variety of literacy skills.

I am Confident
Ākonga have the confidence to drive their own learning. They can reflect on and celebrate their individual successes and the success of others. They believe in their own abilities as a learner and can apply learning to a range of situations. Ākonga show determination, can manage themselves and have a growth mindset to be the best that they can be.

I am Connected
Ākonga understand that te Tiriti O Waitangi celebrates the unique place of Māori culture in Aotearoa New Zealand. They  know their whakapapa, are secure in their own cultural identity and respect the cultural identity of others. They celebrate diversity and can value perspectives that may differ to their own. Ākonga are connected to their environment and the wider world and take action to make it a better place.


You will have received emails from John Russell Schoolwear and the School Board explaining the situation about our grey school shorts not being able to be supplied to John Russell Schoolwear any longer.  John Russell Schoolwear will now be selling green shorts if new shorts need to be purchased.  Please note – the grey shorts can still be worn and we will slowly phase these out over time.

  • Please name all uniform items.
  • Hats to be worn in Term 1.
  • Bring a named drink bottle.
  • We do have sunscreen at school but we do suggest you apply sunscreen in the morning.
  • Lost Property is outside Room 1.
  • New uniform items can be purchased from John Russell Schoolwear, 9 Moore Street Howick:
  • More information about our school uniform can be found on the school website


Students in Years 4, 5 and 6 are able to bring their own device to school from week 3 (13 February).  We will continue to provide devices for our tamariki that do not bring their own device to school. Information will be emailed to our Year 4, 5 and 6 whānau in a separate email.  Following this notification, please email for any further information. 

Sojung Yoon, BYOD Coordinator

BDS School App

To keep up to date with school notices, notify student absences, and more – head to your app store to download and install the KiwiSchools KS Connect app, and connect with Botany Downs School.

Senior Playground Design…




Pay the kindo way:

Copyright © Botany Downs Primary School 2023
Click here to unsubscribe.
Powered by KiwiSchools 4.0