Kia ora Whānau – Greetings everyone.

It becomes quite apparent when you have visitors from other schools what it is they notice that is special or different about what you do. We often get strong feedback about the levels of engagement, the strong sense of the school culture and the eagerness of our children to share. There is however, one thing in particular that St Martins does a little differently and with great outcomes for our learners. I am referring to the Performing Arts. As a parent community, through our consultation processes, it was strongly indicated what an important place this learning has. This feeling is not new, St Martins has a long history of success and innovation in this area, so we recognised that it was important that this continues to grow.

Over the past few years we have focussed on the best way to deliver high quality, high interest Performing Arts programmes across the school. The short story is that we have created a strong team of Dance, Drama, and Music experts who manage the delivery of a very special multifaceted Performing Arts programme across all levels of the school. We often only hear about these teachers when there is a special performance, so it is important to acknowledge the work they do week in, week out to provide the foundation that results in such excellent levels of ‘on stage performance’, whether it be in class, at syndicate assembly, whole school assembly or for a major performance. Our amazing team of three, Trudy Rowe, Amy Kenel and Helen Murray are growing the skills, confidence and enjoyment of the arts and our children are loving it. Next term will offer another opportunity for us to see the benefits of these special programmes as our classes prepare for our ‘Wearable Arts’ extravaganza. The strong foundation laid down by our experts will ensure that next term’s major event will be fun, creative, exciting and ‘not to be missed’!

National Standards:

Each year schools are required to submit their National Standards data to the Ministry of Education (MOE). This allows the MOE to provide some comparisons in relation to regions and nationally.  St Martins data continues to be strong and is moving in a very positive direction. The complete data is available on the MOE website but a very brief summary of the overall picture is listed below. (NB: National Standards data is collected only for Reading, Writing and Mathematics.


89% (450) students achieving ‘at’ or ‘above’ National Standards for Reading at the end of 2015 compared to 87% in 2014 and 77% in 2012.

Canterbury Region: 80.65% ‘at or above’ (end of 2014)

New Zealand Average: 78.03% ‘at or above’                       


77% (391) students achieving ‘at’ or ‘above’ National Standards for Writing at the end of 2015 compared to 76% in 2014 and 68% in 2012.

Canterbury Region: 73.88% ‘at or above’ (end of 2014) 

New Zealand Average: 71.13% ‘at or above’                        


85% (432) students achieving ‘at’ or ‘above’ National Standards for Mathematics at the end of 2015 compared to 85% in 2014 and 80% in 2012.

Canterbury Region: 77.44% ‘at or above’ (end of 2914)

New Zealand Average: 71.13% ‘at or above’                       

Kind regards

Rob Callaghan