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 05 MAY 2022




For a roundup of what has been happening across our regions click below.




Our latest news:









Nau mai ki te pānui tênei ko te Kōrero.


Covid-19 Update


Vaccination Policy Set To Change  


Whānau Manaaki Kindergartens’ board is proposing to adopt a policy that means the Association will no longer require Covid-19 vaccinations for employees, TONI educators, TONI household members, volunteers or contractors.  


This follows a full independent health risk assessment that was undertaken that considered, all relevant factors and advice from public health authorities and the Ministry of Education.   


The assessment included the fact that all staff are currently fully vaccinated, members of our communities are highly vaccinated, and many in our communities, including children, have immunity through having contracted Covid.   


This means we will be able to welcome all our families to kindergarten and will no longer use vaccine passes.  


Under the proposed policy, Whānau Manaaki will continue to actively encourage vaccinations, and will continue to collect vaccination records on a voluntary basis.  Other public health measures to mitigate risks will remain in place.  


We will continue to follow the Covid Protection Framework and its associated requirements.  

The policy will be reviewed every three months, or more often as necessary, should the situation change.  


The policy will come into effect following consultation with you and NZEI Te Riu Roa, and after which will be finalised by the board.  We would like to hear from as many people as possible and you can respond as an individual or a team. The consultation window for staff feedback closes Wednesday 11 May 2022, and can be submitted via the linked form or directly to the Chief People Officer – Karen Skett.  


After the policy is finalised, you will get a new pack about what this will look like in our services.


Select this link for staff feedback survey form


Select this link to view the proposed COVID-19 Staff and Volunteer Vaccination Policy



Senior Teacher Update


Budget PLD for Head Teachers    


A Teams Meeting has been set up for Head Teacher's to discuss with Brendon, how to complete your Budgets for the 2022-2023 financial year.


We will also record this meeting and put it on Story Park for you to refer to at a later date. This Teams meeting will give you the opportunity to ask questions and get answers. 


You will also note that in the budget information in last week’s Korero there are contact people in the finance team for the Head Teachers in each Kindergarten. 


To access the teams meeting please select this link. 


Health and Safety


Evacuation Drills


Just a reminder that we use GOSH to report on evacuation drills.  The drills we report using the Evacuation Drill form on GOSH are:

  • Earthquake evacuation drill (Monthly)
  • Fire Evacuation Drill (Monthly)
  • Notifiable Fire Evacuation Drill (six monthly)

Please note as per Ministry of Education guidelines, we no longer undertake lockdown drillshowever its still important that teams have a plan in case there is a lockdown at their kindergarten


When you are reporting on your drills using the Evacuation Drill form on GOSH, please ensure that you tick the box that indicates what type of drill it is (blue arrow below) and if the drill is the notifiable 6 monthly fire drill, please tick “Yes” in the “Is this a notifiable evacuation drill” (green arrow below). By selecting “Yes” the Fire Service will automatically be sent a copy of the report.


Six Monthly Fire Evacuation Drill


Please remember that when you are undertaking the 6 monthly fire evacuation drill The Fire Service Communication Centre must be called 10 minutes before the drill, on phone 04 801 0812.  The purpose of this is to ensure neighbors and the Fire Service do not respond unnecessarily. If the Fire Communications Centre does not answer the phone, teachers will delay the drill. The six monthly drill is to provide practice for what would happen in an actual emergency. For example, if a fire alarm is activated in a real fire, then this must be activated, if the group would leave the grounds to get to their place of safety, then this must be practiced. An actual call to 111 emergency services must also be part of the six monthly drill.


You are able to access records of your previous drills on GOSH by logging into  “My Kindergarten” and selecting “Evacuation Records”


Please don’t hesitate to contact Lorraine Coulston 


A New Home for Kōrero


In an exciting new development from our communications team, the Kōrero is soon to move to a brand new internal site for staff- Te Kete Mātauranga.


The new internal site will be launched in conjunction with our new website which is in development but hoped to be live by the end of this month.


More information about how Te Kete Mātauranga will operate will feature in future editions of Kōrero and there will be support available as we move to the new system, so that everyone can access it easily and can get help if needed.


We will also seek regular feedback so we can make any improvements necessary so that it works for everyone and makes your job easier. 


Look out for more about Te Kete Mātauranga in the coming weeks!  


Te Rito Maioha On-line Te Reo Course


Ke tei pēhea koe? This is a reminder that you can continue to access Te Rito Maioha member benefits in 2022, including He Pātaka Reo | Te Reo Pantry!


He Pātaka Reo is an online course designed to support you to build confidence in speaking te reo Māori. There are 3 stages, starting with pronunciation and greetings introduces, and leading into more activity-based language.


If you haven’t begun the He Pātaka Reo | Te Reo Pantry online course, or are not sure where to start, please email Te Rito Maioha or call them on 0800 322 384. The most important thing to remember when you go to sign in, is that your username is your full @wmkindergartens.org.nz email address.  Or contact Nicole Harper for assistance.


If you are part way through, keep it up | kia kaha koe! 


If you have completed stage one, two & three, good for you | tau ke koe!  We are looking forward to launching stage four early in 2022!


In the meantime, remember to check out the other range of member resources available to you. These include downloadable posters with te reo Māori and English translations, the Waiata Resource | Rauemi Waiata which offers a collection of formal and informal waiata for you to learn and share with your tamariki, and other free to member PLD such as the Terrific Two-year olds! | Ka mau te wehi! webinar.


Te Huarau Scholarship from TeachNZ


Craig McLaren is the lucky recipient of the Te Haurau Scholarship from TeachNZ this year. Craig is a Teacher Aide at Marie McFarland Kindergarten in Whanganui and in the second year of his Bachelor of Education through Te Rito Mioha.


The scholarship removes barriers by offering recipients financial assistance. It is designed to assist applicants studying to teach any subject in any sector.  


As a Te Huarau Scholar you have your course fees covered for your current year and an allowance over the period of your study (limited to four years). Craig is now able to focus on studying and hopefully not have a debt at the end.


He recommends to anyone planning to or know someone wanting to train in education, to look into the scholarships available. 


Find out more about the Te Huarau Scholarship from TeachNZ


Farewell to Kaz


Whānau Manaaki farewelled Karen Craig (Kaz) from our Whanganui office this week, after 10 years working for kindergartens in both voluntary and paid roles.


Kaz became involved in the kindergarten movement after her son attended St John’s Hill kindergarten. She volunteered at the Whanganui office, sharing her administrative expertise before moving to a paid position with the Whanganui Association, and since 2019, Whānau Manaaki.


She is now moving to fulltime work, supporting the sales team at NZME, which produces local paper, the Whanganui Chronicle.


Kaz says she has loved being part of a large organisation that plays such a positive role in supporting children and families.  Whānau Manaaki’s CEO Amanda Coulston describes Kaz as an enthusiastic and hardworking member of the admin team.  


Thank you Kaz, for all that you have done, and we know you will be a great asset to the team at NZME!


Welcome to TWO new Pēpē!


Tai Tamariki teacher Maisie and her partner Richard welcomed baby Frances Anna Harness on 24 April. Congratulations to Maisie and her whānau!


Porirua Head Office administrator Nora and her partner Cameron welcomed their baby girl into the world on 29 April. Congratulations to Nora and her whānau!



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