Board of Trustees

Chairperson: Steve Dorey
Treasurer: Wendy Thompson
Members: Emma Collins, Andy Gowland-Douglas, Nichola Cunneen, John Gugich, Cheryl Gallagher 
Principal Jo Duston
Staff Rep Craig Adams

The Board’s Function

The Board’s function is to govern the school.
In practice this means their main tasks are:-

  • Setting up the School’s Charter in consultation with parents
  • Setting up a Charter Framework to ensure the Charter works
  • Setting the School’s Policies
  • Meeting the requirements of the National Education Guidelines:
  • Ensuring that the New Zealand Curriculum is put into practice
  • Reviewing the school’s programme to do this.
  • Planning ahead
  • Appointing staff
  • Maintaining and developing the school’s grounds and buildings
  • Purchasing the resources required
  • Managing the school’s finances
  • Generally attending to the wellbeing of the school, the students and the staff.
  • Overseeing fundraising through a fundraising committee of parents. This might be as simple as a cake stall or as large as a School Gala.

School Staff

Principal:                 Joanne Duston             
Deputy Principal:      Alex Finnerty
Assistant Principal:    Lyn Rodger           11
Senior Teachers:      Craig Adams           4                Deb Forsyth          7/8
Teachers:                Jenny Sloan          10                John Herrick               13
                             Nicky Campey         6                Nigel Irwin                  9
                              Raeleen Sara         1/2              Lisa Halsall                  3
                              Julie Shepherd        5                Chris Rout                 1/2
                              Justin Hart             14              Jenny Clementson       12
                              Peter Duston        Release        Sue Hattersley           Release                                     Carol Ward           Release



Teacher Assistants:   Jody Collins                             Ann-Maree Bade
                              Jenny Keenan                          Tina Greiter
                              Tania O'Dea                             Rebecca Aldridge
                              Teresa Smith                           Lorainne Johnson
                              Skye Alexander                        Ameena McBride                          Mel Ratcliffe                                                            


Library:                  Jenny Keenan

Office Administrator Taryn Knudsen     

Caretaker:               Steven Anderson
Caretaker Assistant: Phillip Kilkolly
Cleaners:                 Loma Wixon
                              Donna  Mordecai

Dental Clinic:            Robyn Murray               03 7888237

RTLit:                      Heather Irwin       

                                                                    03 7897132

Social Worker:       Maegan Bird 

                                                                    03 7888065

May be seen anywhere around school as she works with children and staff

Donations / School Fees

These are set each year by the Board of Trustees.
For 2017 School fees will be $50.00 for one child, $60.00 for two children and $70.00 for three or more children from one family.
School fees are used to pay for all the little extras that our Government funding does not cover. We also have a compulsory $25 fee which covers any shows that the children see at our school.

School Stationery

Stationery lists are available from the office. Pupils can buy their stationery from local stationers or packs of stationery are available from the office at the beginning of the year.

Bought lunches

Lunches may be bought from Arkwrights Corner Store by placing orders at the store before school. Remember to give your child’s full name and Room number when
placing the order. Any children needing to leave school to go to the store at any other time must have a duty teacher’s written permission and must report to the duty teacher when they return. Deep fried foods will only be delivered to school Wednesday. Fizzy drinks and lollies are not permitted at school. Please make sure your children eat breakfast before they come to school.
Subway Lunches Tuesday:- Order to be handed into the office by 9am. Correct money and order needs to be in a envelope. (Forms in the Office)                                      

Friday School Lunch:- Fridays the school has lunches for purchase. Sausages,(cost $2.00 each) and drinks (cost $1.50).
Orders are taken outside Room 5 before school.

Camps and Outdoor Education

Children from year 1—Year 8 will be involved in camping activities each year. Some of these activities for those children up to Year3 occur in the school grounds. Other classes go to such places as Karamea, Punakaiki and the Year 8 class goes to Wellington on an “urban experience”. Parent helpers are needed for these activities to continue as our School Policy has a ratio of 1 adult to 8 children when venturing away from the school grounds. Expenses are mainly met by parents, with costs being notified early in the year. Considerable fund-raising is carried out for the Year 8 trip. Camps take place in Term 1.

Sports Teams

Teams from South School take part in most local and district sports. Uniforms are usually supplied but subs are the responsibility of the parents.


Choir/District Choir

Organiser: Raeleen Sara
Members of the school choir practice in the school hall once a week and a little more often when preparing to perform at special functions. Membership is voluntary. Many of our children are members of the District Choir.


Computers are available in all rooms. Children are given opportunities to use programmes that are both educational and recreational. As well as the computer they are given the opportunity to use the digital camera, video tapes e.t.c. to present their work. Senior pupils yrs.7&8 are involved with technology classes at Buller High School

School Uniforms

The uniform is compulsory. Children are asked to wear navy bottoms, red tee-shirt/skivvy/polo shirt, navy sweatshirt or polar fleece, vest and have a broad brimmed hat (Aussie hat), bucket hat or legionnaire hat for term 1 & 4. Shoes are the choice of parents. The Monogramed school uniform available from Postie Plus but items without a monogram may be purchased from other outlets. Please ensure clothing is named. Hats are compulsory for terms 1 & 4.


Participation in the Australian English, Maths Computer and
Science Competitions, Otago Maths Problem Solving and Speech Competitions, are encouraged. Parents will be notified of costs as they arise.



Cornerstone Values

The Cornerstone values programme covers eight values that we actively teach.
Respect, responsibility, obedience, truthfulness and honesty, kindness, consideration, duty and compassion.

Special Help

Children identified with special needs, either remedial, extension or behavioural, may join special groups for extra tuition and support. Services such as RTLB and RTLit may be asked to assist. You will always be notified and kept up to date with help being offered to your child. This school has extensive experience and success in dealing with special needs.


If children are traveling to school by bus a transport claim form must be filled in at the time of enrolment. Bus children are to remain in the bus assembly area after school. John Herrick will check the names to ensure all children are on the bus before it leaves. Non eligible children need to ring Ritchies 03 768 2222 to see if there is a place available on the bus. A term fee applies to these children.


We request that parents/caregivers contact the school as soon as they know their child will not be attending. Email, leave a message on the school phone 03 7897132 or text 0277566107 before 9am.
We are now using the Ministry’s electronic attendance register. After 10 days, children for whom we don’t get an explanation of absence, become registered as truant. You can also enter absences on the school website. It is important that children coming to school are punctual. All patterns of lateness and nonattendance will be viewed as serious.

Sun Safe

We have a sun safe policy. This requires that in summer sunhats and shirts with sleeves are to be worn during term 1 & 4. The school supplies each room with colourless sunblock that children are encouraged to put on.

Smoke - free

Our school environment is totally smoke free. All staff, parents, visitors and workers are asked not to smoke at any event associated with the school.


We have a well-resourced library which is fully computerized. Book stocks are constantly being replenished by our librarian.

Accidents at School

Minor accidents are dealt with at school. If a serious accident happens the parent or person nominated for emergency calls is contacted while the child is resting in the Medical room. If no responsible person can be contacted we will take whatever action is deemed necessary. However we always try to contact the parents first.


The school alternates even years are school production years and uneven years are school revue years. School reviews involve the whole school and focus on the school study theme for the term. Major productions involve mainly senior children and the choir.


From time to time Parents/Caregivers may have concerns. It is important that these issues are resolved quickly.

Support For Students And Staff

The Board of Trustees has a clear policy on how parent concerns should be dealt with.  

  • It makes the following points:

  • We do not see complaints as negative.

  • We want parents to feel comfortable enough to make their concerns known.

  • Where possible any point of concern should be politely and reasonably discussed with the teacher/staff members concerned.

  • If this does not resolve the concern, parents/caregivers should discuss the point with the principal.

If the parent/caregiver is still not satisfied the issue should be put in writing and referred to the Board of Trustees.

Student Support Plan

Learning and teaching programmes work on self esteem, relating to others and conflict resolution. Well behaved children are often acknowledged by staff with simple rewards eg. Positive affirmations, stickers, feely boxes, squawk awards, free time

Inappropriate Behaviour is treated in the following manner:


A Behaviour Board system operates

Children are redirected and reminded of what the expected behaviour is.

  • Children are given a verbal warning and again reminded of the correct behaviour.
  • Children given a formal warning which is recorded on the behaviour board.
  • Children are sent to timeout for specified period.
  • Children are not allowed in playground at lunch time.

As an alternative teachers may choose to match the time to the crime ie If caught dropping litter, be sent to pick up litter.

Children will be fast tracked to timeout for the following things

  • Violence—this may be for cooling down or until the teacher sorts out what happened as well as a punishment.
  • Abuse of staff member
  • Defiance

The Deputy Principal analyses the Behaviour Boards each week and will talk to children whose names appear frequently and after consultation with the teachers will contact parents if necessary.



 Follow the teacher’s directions the first time.

  • Use appropriate behaviour, language and common sense ie. No calling out, swearing, hitting, bullying etc


When a student breaks a rule:

  • Warning, name on board, 3 ticks indicating 3 chances
  • Away from group in another class until next session
  • Whole day out of classroom

Parents will be notified at this stage or for severe behaviour and further consequences will be worked out in consultation with the parents

Supporting the Staff

When you enroll your child at Westport South School you agree to support the school staff.
It is important that parents/caregivers do this. Many things happen at school and I can assure you that our staff always act skillfully and professionally. However it is all too easy to undermine a staff member.

Some positive suggestions are:

  • Do not be critical of a staff member in front of a child.
  • Find out the facts of what really happened, or ask the school to do so.
  • Talk to the right person. If you have a worry about the class room talk to the teacher first, then to the senior teacher or principal.
  • If you want to talk to the teacher try to make an appointment to do so. They are busy and can give you their full attention if a proper time is set aside.
  • Focus on the positive each day when your child gets home from school.

How to Help Your Child


Some school home work may be set from time to time, increasing with the age of the child.
This will not involve new learning but may involve such things as:

  • Practice of learned material.
  • Research or home questions.
  • Presentation or publishing of work already completed.
  • Sharing of work or experience.
  • A period of reading each night.

It is important that parents make homework a positive experience. There will be some ‘mistakes’ and things they cannot do. It is important to look for the things they can do well and praise them.

Parent Helpers

We welcome help in the classroom to give children a little more individual attention. Talk to your child’s teacher. Help is always welcome mending and shelving books if the classroom is not your scene.


Learning to read is vital. We often involve parents in sharing this by giving children books to read at night. Children who are read to and who share their reading at home usually make excellent progress.

Here are some ideas to promote reading at home each night:

  • Read to your child / children
  • Share a book—you read a paragraph, they read a paragraph.
  • Praise all their efforts
  • Pause, don’t be too quick to correct
  • Prompt, get the child to think about the meaning and/or the first letter
  • Don’t ever growl, hurry the child or over emphasis ‘sounding’

See us at school if you want more specific help

Remember easy and familiar materials are important for reinforcing the level your child is at and so you may reread books that have already been seen.


enrolment form 18.pdf297.06 KB