Pink Shirt Day
“SPEAK UP, STAND TOGETHER, STOP BULLYING”
This is the catchphrase of the Pink Shirt Day today Friday 19 May.
The number of people wearing pink shows that this ideal is what we want as part of the culture in our kura and of our society.
This is an ideal time to share with students, parents and whānau an understanding of what bullying is; and know what to do when bullying does occur. Many times students or whanau say that they, or someone is being bullied, but we are finding there is a misunderstanding of what bullying is.
- It is not a one off.
- Bullying is deliberate, involves a power imbalance, has an element of repetition, is intended to be harmful, and the bully has no regrets.
- Bullying behaviours can be physical, verbal, or social, and can take place in the physical world or digitally.
- It involves up to three parties; initiators (those doing the bullying), affected persons (those being bullied) and often bystanders (those who witness the bullying).
For a change in culture to occur students, staff, parents, whānau and other members of the community need to share responsibility for making our school a respectful and inclusive environment.
As a kura we are promoting:
- A “safe telling” culture. This is to encourage all students to report bullying, whether they are the target, the initiator or the bystander. A safe telling culture reassures students they have done the right thing whenever they report bullying.
- Confidentiality. It is important that students are not considered as “narks” for speaking up, so maintaining anonymity is an important consideration when staff respond to reported incidents of bullying.
- Our school values of high expectations, respecting one and all, working together and standing strong.
- Parents and whānau being involved as early as possible and as appropriate.
A range of approaches for resolving bullying incidents are used at Ōtūmoetai College.
- Clear standards of behaviour are communicated, as well as knowledge there will be consequences or punishment for unacceptable behaviour. This may include verbal reprimands, loss of privileges, detention, internal/external removal from class and referral to the police.
- Restorative philosophy and principles underpin our practice. This is a relational approach to school life that is grounded in beliefs about equality, dignity, mana and the potential of all people. Where possible and if parties are willing a restorative meeting is facilitated between initiators and targets of bullying.
- Strengthening the affected persons, via the counsellors, can help them to acquire the capacity to deal effectively with the threat of being bullied by someone.
- Initiators, via the counsellors, learn strategies for managing their emotions and behaviour.
Tackling Bullying A Guide for Parents and Whanau
The aim of this guide is to provide information to parents, carers and whānau to help you respond effectively to any concerns your children and young people may have about bullying.
Rural Buses – Important changes to Whakamarama Road, Youngson Road, Old Highway, Barrett Road and Plummers Point Road
Dear Parents/Caregivers of students that use the Rural Bus Network,
We understand that journey times for students coming to school from the Omokoroa and Whakamarama areas have been painfully long recently. This has been far from ideal for our students who have been arriving well into Period 1. We have received the following information today from the Tauranga Transport Network Group that relates to rural bus services to and from Omokoroa, Plummers Point and Whakamarama.
From Monday 22 May there will be a new bus route in place on the western side of Tauranga.
The R19 bus will service the lower part of Whakamarama Road, Youngson Road, Old Highway, Barrett Road and Plummers Point Road.
This service will collect students attending Ōtūmoetai College and Intermediate, Tauranga Intermediate, Tauranga Girls’ College and Tauranga Boys’ College. This bus will transfer TIS, TBC and TGC students at Bethlehem.
From Tuesday 23 May, routes 22, 23 and 24 will no longer travel to Plummers Point Road. R16 will be modified to commence at the corner of Whakamarama Road and Youngson Road. Further changes to timetables will be made to improve arrival times at school.
Please remember that students do need to have a Bus Pass with them, which can be ordered via this link.
Tauranga City Council Survey
See yourself in your city
Whakahou Taketake Vital Update – Tauranga 2023 is a three-yearly research project led by Tauranga City Council, and supported by Acorn Foundation, Bay Trust and TECT, to help these organisations, and many others, hear from the different communities who make up Tauranga, about what is going well and the issues that pose challenges.
The voices of rangatahi (aged 13-24) are not always heard in local government and other forums, however we believe the voices and experiences of our students and the school community matters, and we all have a role to play now and in the future. This is a chance for Otūmoetai College students, whanau and staff to contribute towards this data and inform Council and community initiatives over the coming years.
The survey is for Tauranga residents and takes between 15-30 minutes to complete. Personal details are only required if you wish to enter the prize draw and will not be associated with any answers given as part of the survey. The survey is being conducted through an independent research company, Key Research.
More information can be found here.
Please note rangatahi under 16 years should talk to their caregiver before they participate.