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End of Term Message and Correction to House Chapel Service

posted 2 Jul 2020, 19:07 by Debbie Stevens

Kia ora koutou

As this term comes to an end, I want to express my sincere thanks and appreciation to all our students, staff, and whaanau for all you have contributed to this community over the course of the past unpredictable few months.  Thank you also for the messages of thanks to the staff. They are valued.

COVID-19 has brought the importance of supporting happy, healthy and connected learners into even sharper focus. It has impacted on the wellbeing of many of our learners and their families.
In response, the Government today announced a further $66 million in new wellbeing funding to support the immediate wellbeing of our learners and educators in the wake of COVID-19. These announcements are part of an integrated package of Budget 2020 wellbeing supports. More announcements will be made soon.
Today’s package consists of: 
  • $50 million, in 2020/21, for an Urgent Response Fund. This immediate support to centre-based early learning services, schools and kura to improve attendance, is to help manage any learning, social, emotional, mental, or other wellbeing needs directly related to COVID-19. Ministry regional offices will work with providers to fund local initiatives.
  • $16 million for Educator wellbeing. Funding will provide access to support services for an additional 10,000 employees of publically funded early learning services, kōhanga reo, schools and kura, and their families.
These new supports for curriculum wellbeing teaching, along with the latest package addressing the immediate needs of learners and educators resulting from COVID-19 will be welcomed by all education providers, and by many parents and whānau.

Waikato Diocesan School for Girls is committed to supporting our students as they navigate the final two terms of 2020. It is through the combined efforts of staff, students, boards, and all of you, along with the support of our community at large, that we continue to thrive and succeed. I look forward to working with you in Term 3 as we embrace new opportunities and tackle new challenges.

On a final note, please note a correction to the DioNews issue six. The House Service on 26 July is for Blake, Hillary, and Ross (NOT Shackleton, Scott, Wilson as stated). And a reminder to diarise Sunday 6 December for our whole school Chapel/Carol Service.

My very best wishes to you and your loved ones for this term break.

Ngā mihi

Mary Curran


Phone Issues

posted 16 Jun 2020, 13:32 by Debbie Stevens   [ updated 17 Jun 2020, 15:40 ]

We are currently experiencing issues with our phone lines. We are unable to make external calls and incoming calls are being diverted to another phone in reception. Chorus is working on it, however the repair
 time is unknown at this stage.

In the interim, please send any correspondence to staff via email and if you are reporting a student absence, please email

We hope to be back up and running soon. Thank you for your support.

We've Made it to Level One!

posted 11 Jun 2020, 17:17 by Debbie Stevens

Kia ora koutou
What wonderful news that we currently have no active cases of COVID-19 and have now moved to Alert Level 1.   This is recognition of the efforts by all New Zealanders to keep each other safe.
But as the Prime Minister pointed out - while this is a very important milestone, the job is not done. We need to continue to be vigilant – wash and dry hands, and recall where we have been so that we can contact trace if required.

There are key public health measures - Golden Rules - for everyone in New Zealand to follow. For schools this means:
  • If people are sick, they should stay home (phone Healthline or their GP and get tested if they have cold or flu symptoms).
  • Continue to regularly wash and dry hands, sneeze and cough into elbows.
  • Soap, water and the ability to dry hands provided in bathrooms.
  • Regularly disinfect shared surfaces.
  • Stringent self-isolation of those who display relevant symptoms of COVID-19, test positive for COVID-19, have been in close contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19, or have been overseas in the last 14 days – Ministry of Health information for self-isolation.
  • Any educational facilities connected to a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19 must close on an individual or group basis for 72 hours to allow contact tracing, and then potentially for a further 14 days.
For us, there will be no major changes to what we are doing and our school continues to be safe to attend, including any staff and students who are considered more vulnerable to COVID. We have a good cleaning routine in place, people who are sick are staying at home and we continue to encourage good hygiene practices.

We are supporting contact tracing by having QR code posters at our entrances – so if you haven’t already downloaded the NZ COVID Tracer app the Ministry of Health’s NZ-COVID Tracer app page has information to help you do that. 

The Martin Street gate is now open from 6.00 am to 8.00 pm Monday to Friday. River Road is also open but will remain closed at 8.00 am - 
9.00 am and 3.00 pm - 4.00 pm. Students must not be dropped off or collected from this entrance unless they are being collected from the Wellness Centre during the day.

School transport services are now back to normal. Good hygiene practices are still a priority and buses will continue to be cleaned regularly in accordance with the Ministry of Health guidance. No physical distancing is required on Hamilton buses, school buses, or public transport services. 

What is changing is that we can now look forward to whole-school gatherings, school singing, inter-school and community sport, cultural events and performances and to welcoming all of our school community on-site for these activities.  Just some of the school events and gatherings coming up in the next few weeks and next term include: 
  • 15 and 17 June - Year 13 Solo Drama Performances
  • 26 June - House Singing Battle (onsite)
  • 23 July -  Dio Science Fair
  • 29 July -  Learning Conferences - Years 11, 12, 13
  • 4 and 5 August - Dance Showcase
  • 7 August - Learning Conferences - Years 11, 12, 13
  • 12 August - STAFF ONLY DAY
  • 12 August - He Tai Ohinga Maro Kapa Haka Festival
  • 19 August - Senior Ball (previously May Ball)
  • 24 August - Dio Exchange with Auckland Diocesan (home)
  • 25 and 26 August - Year 10 Enterprise
  • 26 August - Dio Cross-country (competitors only)
  • 26 August - High Achievers Concert
  • 27 August - Photolife group photo day #1
  • 28 August - Father/Daughter Breakfast
  • 28 August - ITM Waikato Band and Orchestra Festival
  • 28, 29. 30 August - Waikato Choir Festival
  • 31 August to 5 September - Winter Tournament Week
  • 24 September - Dio Arts Showcase
  • Friday 25 Photolife group photo day #2
Click here to view our school calendars.

A new COVID-19 government website Kia Kotahi mō te WHAIORANGA | Unite for the RECOVERY replaces the previous ‘Unite against COVID-19’ website. Its three key sections are:
  • COVID-19 – Learn about the virus and what we all need to do.
  • Wellbeing – You’re not alone. Find the support you need.
  • Jobs and Training – Get careers, training and upskilling help.
I look forward to seeing many of you again on the sidelines and in the audience supporting your daughters and their class/teammates.

Ngā mihi

Mary Curran



Teacher Only Day This Friday

posted 7 Jun 2020, 18:56 by Debbie Stevens

A reminder that, as per the school calendar, there is a teacher only day this Friday, 12 June. 

Lord of the Flies Production Cancelled

posted 3 Jun 2020, 21:04 by Debbie Stevens

The school production team has spent the last three weeks tirelessly working through the challenges of staging our production of Lord of the Flies later in the year. Despite our best efforts, we have not been able to overcome all the obstacles that Covid-19 presented. With sadness and great disappointment, we have made the decision to cancel the 2020 production of Lord of the Flies. There are many reasons behind this decision and we want to reassure the cast, band, and school whanau that we did everything we could to hold onto the production. 

Congratulations to our talented students on the incredible show that they created. This will not be known as the production that we lost, it will be known as the production that nearly was. We know that there will be questions around this decision and we have addressed some of them below.
  • We will not be bringing back Lord of the Flies in 2021.
  • The cast and band are able to use their participation in the production as part of their application for Arts Honours.
  • Please contact the School Shop for information about ticket refunds.
I would like to acknowledge the incredible team of staff that has worked since last September to bring this production to life. The hours of work cannot be measured, nor can the amount of talent that they have brought to the organisation, music, set, costumes, props, marketing, hair/makeup and choreography in this production. Dio is very blessed to have such a passionate and gifted team of staff who make productions happen simply because they love the arts and they love giving your daughters the opportunity to be involved in something creative. 

And finally, a big thank you to our amazing sponsors: Stronglite StagingVivid Images LtdACLXDio Proprietor's Board.

Lee Armitage
Director and HoD Drama

Changes to NCEA and University Entrance (UE)

posted 2 Jun 2020, 21:51 by Debbie Stevens

Tēnā koutou,

I hope you and your whānau are well.

We know some of our students - and their whānau - are worried that they might not be able to attain NCEA or UE this year, because of the disruption caused by COVID-19.

To help address this and support students, the following changes are being made to NCEA and University Entrance (UE) requirements for this year:

  • Students working towards NCEA can gain additional credits, based on the number of credits they achieve during the 2020 school year. These additional credits will be known as Learning Recognition credits. For every 5 credits a student achieves towards their NCEA, either through internal or external assessment, they are entitled to an additional 1 credit. Students at NCEA Level 1 are eligible for up to a maximum of 10 additional credits while those at Levels 2 and 3 are eligible for up to a maximum of 8 additional credits.

  • Students will be awarded a certificate endorsement if they achieve 46 credits at Merit or Excellence level, rather than the usual 50. Students achieving 12 credits at Merit or Excellence level in a course – rather than 14 – will be awarded a course endorsement.

  • Current UE requirements have been reduced from 14 to 12 credits in three UE-approved subjects. Students still need to attain NCEA Level 3 and meet literacy and numeracy requirements to be awarded University Entrance.

  • External NCEA examinations and NZ Scholarship examinations will now take place from 16 November 2020 to 6 December 2020. This will provide extra time for teaching, learning and assessment in Term 4.

  • The submission date for subjects which require students to submit a portfolio (for example, Design and Visual Communications) has been extended to 12 November 2020, to give students more time to complete their portfolios.

These changes have been designed to encourage students to continue working towards their NCEA and to ensure that the NCEA attained by our rangatahi this school year is just as valid as those earned in previous years.

If you have any subject specific questions, please contact the relevant Head of Department or your daughter’s teacher. If you have any queries about the changes outlined above, please contact me at

Ngā mihi,

Jacqueline Smith                                       


NCEA Mid-Year Reporting and Learning Conferences 2020

posted 1 Jun 2020, 18:16 by Debbie Stevens   [ updated 1 Jun 2020, 18:18 ]

Due to the impact of COVID 19, our traditional mid-year reports for our NCEA students will look different. The report developed will develop a clear and concise update on the academic progress and achievement of our Years 10 to 13 students entered into full NCEA courses. This report will provide an update of each student and the number of credits they are enrolled in and have gained thus far. There will be no form teacher work habits, form teacher comments, or subject teacher work habits. Subject teachers will provide a brief academic update.

As a follow on from our NCEA academic progress focused mid-year reports, whānau are invited to attend our Senior Learning Conferences scheduled for Wednesday 29 July and Friday 7 August from 3.00 pm to 6.00 pm in the Nancy Light Hall and surrounding classrooms.  Parents and caregivers of students enrolled in full NCEA courses from Years 10 to 13 will be emailed a link to book their times with teachers early in 
Term 3. The school will also finish at 2.30 pm on Friday 7 August to accommodate our boarding families. 

Please note, to implement the necessary health and safety measures in response to the relevant COVID-19 Alert Level, there will be changes to the rooming of our Learning Conferences to help encourage physical distancing.

Senior Derived Practice Examinations 2020

After much discussion amongst members of the Senior Leadership Team and Head of Departments, our Senior Derived Grade Practice Examinations will still take place from Thursday 10 September to Thursday 17 September 2020 (Term 3, Weeks 8 and 9). Examination timetables will be shared with staff and students by Term Week 4 at the latest. Our students have already been notified.

Noho ora mai

Jacqueline Smith | Deputy Principal - Reporting & Priority Learners

Early Finish Tuesday 2 June

posted 31 May 2020, 14:52 by Debbie Stevens   [ updated 1 Jun 2020, 18:12 ]

On Tuesday, 2 June, students are permitted to leave school at 2:55 pm.  Due to the restrictions in place at Level 2, we are unable to have Special C and sing as a community. Instead of extending the lunchbreak and removing Special C during this time, the Leadership Team has responded to a request from the Student Council to shorten the day. The students felt that they could be making better use of their time. This action will be reviewed on a weekly basis.

Students who are unable to be collected by 3.00 pm are able to remain in the Library until 3:20 pm.

The amended times are as follows:
  • 1:35 pm 1:50 pm Form Time
  • 1:50 pm- 2:50 pm Period 5 
Thank you for your support.

Winter Sports Season Update

posted 18 May 2020, 19:11 by Debbie Stevens

We are pleased to let you know that a modified winter sports season has been confirmed for the next few months.  
Covid-19 has certainly changed the way sport will be played this winter but we hope that all our students will continue to work towards living our Sports Vision - Preparing confident, resourceful, resilient young women to lead healthier and active lifestyles.

We would like to reassure you and our wider school community that we will ‘proceed with care’ and ‘play if safe’ - following the Government, Ministry of Education and Sport NZ Level 2 guidelines.

To allow your daughter(s) to settle back into school life, we will not commence our winter sports training programmes until 2 June. This date has been determined after advice from the Sport NZ guidelines. The ‘DioFit’ fitness centre will reopen on Monday 25 May with appropriate health and safety measures in place.

Enrolment for Winter Sport will reopen via EnrolMy in due course and we will keep you posted about when this will go live.

Click here to view Waikato Secondary School Sports Guidelines for Gatherings.

We ask you to please take a few moments to complete this google form if, due to the impact of Covid-19, your circumstances have changed and your daughter(s) is now unable to take part in the winter sport they had planned to participate in back in March. 

If you have questions, please contact Mark, Jane, Anna and Jacqui in the Dio Sports Department

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