Photo of girl student

Term 1, Week 8, 2018

Kia ora...

...talofa, ni hao, mālō e lelei, hallo, hola, chomreabsuor, sabaidi, bonjour, namaste, kumaste, kia orana, yassas, as-salam ‘alaykum, cześċ, Kon'nichiwa, and hello to all of our families.

We have been made aware of an incident that occurred earlier this week where a man exposed himself to a former Ridgway student. This incident occurred on Mornington Road in the late afternoon. The incident has been reported to the police and they are investigating. I am also aware that there have been some reports of similar occurrences in other parts of the Wellington region earlier in the year.

Teachers will be discussing safety on the way to and from school with classes, but parents will want to remind their own children about the specific things they can do to keep safe while travelling to and from school.

Here is the advice from Wellington Police for parents and caregivers of students:

  • Teach your child how to get safely to and from school and other places they go – whether they walk, bike or go by bus.

  • Make clear rules about getting home.

  • Teach the children to walk home together in twos or small groups, not alone.

  • Go to school with your child so that you can show them the safest route. Try to use main arterial routes with more people around and avoid walkways and isolated areas.

  • Teach them to deal with hazards like narrow footpaths or busy roads.

  • If they walk, make sure they always use pedestrian crossings.

  • Who does your child walk home with? Meet the parents of children in your area and keep in touch.

  • Anyone who has an immediate concern for their safety should not hesitate to call 111.

  • We actively encourage students to report anything that makes them feel unsafe or uncomfortable. This can be to a trusted adult, a teacher or the Police.

Incidents such as this are very disturbing for all of us and the temptation for many is to stop walking to school altogether. Walking to school can be a perfectly safe activity when the appropriate precautions are taken. I encourage you to join or start up a walking schoolbus network from your neighbourhood. If your children are older, help them to plan how to get to school and home safely as well as what to do if they ever do feel unsafe.

If you are driving your children to school remember to follow the road rules and be courteous to other road users.

Be a 4R Ridgway School driver….

  • Slow down around the school.

  • Avoid U turns on Mornington Road immediately before and after school - drive around the block instead.

  • Never park on the yellow line to allow children or adults to get in or out of your car

  • Pull as far forward as possible in the 2 minute parking area to make it easy for others to park behind you.

  • Make your stop in the 2 minute zone as short as possible so others can use the space too.

We need exemplary road behaviour from all of us to keep all of our children safe during the morning drop off and afternoon pick up times. Please choose a brief inconvenience for yourself over the U turn or yellow line stop that puts others at risk.

Thank you to all of you who already do all of the above. I’m sorry that the driving habits of just a few parents necessitates these constant reminders.


Parents who have been part of our Ridgway School community for some time will be well aware that we have a number of ongoing building issues that the board are actively working with the Ministry of Education to resolve. We have all been frustrated by delays and disheartened by the lack of progress over the last 5 years. As a result of refurbishment work to our junior block being being put off, leaks have developed causing some damage to the toilet floors.

The floor has been made safe, and the builder will return in the school holidays to replace it. We are investigating the best solution to repair the roof, and expect this to also be resolved in the upcoming holidays. While the cause of the leak is most likely from one place, we have leaks in different places on different rainy days.

As we don’t want children slipping on a wet floor, we closed the junior toilets today and asked the children to use toilets at the senior end of the school as well as the staff toilets. Our roofing contractor is working on a short term solution that will keep the floor dry on rainy days over the next couple of weeks, but if this doesn’t work we may need to hire portaloos. Rest assured that we are closely monitoring the situation to keep our children safe.

Hei konā mai

Kathryn Smith


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