Principal’s Comment – Thursday 14 April 2022

Apr 13, 2022

Happy Easter, Happy Holidays and New Zealand moves to the Orange setting of the Covid Protection Framework.

Kia ora Waimea College parents/caregivers and students,

As we reach the end of yet another “term like no other” our school community is ready for the term break and the promise of some down-time to recharge the batteries for another busy term ahead. 


In previous newsletter comments, I have mentioned how proud I am of how our students and staff have managed the challenges presented by COVID and it would be remiss if I didn’t go there again. 

Despite being heavily COVID-impacted, with high numbers of student and staff absences leading to a period of year-levels being rostered home for distance learning, morale has remained high, resolve has remained strong and our learning environment has remained calm. We finish this term in good shape and are well-placed for the terms ahead. Thank you to everyone for your support during this time. 

In future years, when studies are done and stories are told, we will not only look back thinking we are grateful that it is all over, but we will reflect on a time in our history that has been like no other. 

Without wanting to jinx anything, as I write this piece, indicators suggest that we may be a bit more back to normal by the time we return to school on 2 May. 

New Zealand Moves to the Orange Setting

Yesterday the government announced that New Zealand would move to the Orange setting of the COVID Protection Framework for Easter. 

What Term 2 will look like under the Orange setting: 

  • Face Masks must be worn on school and public transport. 
  • Public Health guidance strongly encourages that face masks continue to be worn by students and staff when indoors
  • Face masks are one of the key health measures to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in indoor settings. 
  • While it is no longer a mandated requirement, Waimea College strongly advises students and staff to continue to wear face masks while indoors. 
  • We ask that your teen continues to bring a mask to school every day. There may be times that we’ll ask them to wear a mask, too – for example, when we are having an assembly in the hall. If there are a high number of cases at school or in the community, we may ask that masks are worn in classrooms for a time.

Activities at Orange:

  • There are no limits on gatherings at the Orange setting, however activities with large numbers of students, will take place in well-ventilated areas or outdoors.
  • There are no specific requirements for inter-school Education Outside the Classroom (EOTC) Activities at Orange, 
  • This means that assemblies and other school activities can once again take place.  

Other Health Measures at Orange:

We will continue to keep all the other health measures in place at school that we know slow the spread of COVID-19. These include ensuring our indoor spaces are well-ventilated, maintaining good hand hygiene and cough and sneeze etiquette, appropriate physical distancing whenever we can and, most importantly, staying home if we are unwell. 

We are looking forward to a few less restrictions and returning to school life that is a bit closer to normal. 

Principal’s Sabbatical Term 2

I am fortunate to have been selected for a Teach NZ Secondary Principal’s Sabbatical for Term 2, 2022. 

Our Associate Principal, Graeme Smith will step into the Principal role during Term 2. The Senior Leadership team will be supported by Ms Jenny Kneale who will step into an Associate Deputy Principal role for the term.

All the very best for a happy Easter, and restful and relaxing time over the term break. 

Ngā mihi nui,


By Scott Haines