Important Board Update: Jennifer Ioannou

The Board of Trustees would like to share the news that our Principal, Jennifer Ioannou, has resigned and she will leave St Anthony’s at the end of Term 3 on Friday 27 September.  We congratulate Jennifer on her appointment as Director of Primary at Samuel Marsden Collegiate School and wish her well in her new position.

During her 4 years at the helm, Jennifer has provided dynamic, committed and professional leadership for our children, the teaching staff and the wider school community. She played an instrumental part in upgrading the school’s buildings and grounds, improving our technology and teaching resources and seeing us shine in our latest ERO and Catholic Review reports. Jennifer leaves our school having built a team of exceptional teachers and that gives us great stability moving forward.

In the coming weeks we will celebrate her success as Principal of St Anthony’s School.

With change comes opportunity. The Board has started a recruitment process and is committed to finding an exceptional new Principal with the skill, passion and faith to lead our School to an exciting new future. The Board will ensure a rigorous selection process to secure a talented leader who will build on Jennifer’s legacy and guide the school through the next stage of its development.

We will provide a further update once the recruitment process is more advanced. In the meantime, please take this opportunity to join us in thanking Jennifer for her significant contribution to the school.

If you have any queries please contact Andrew Pink, Chairperson for the Board of Trustees (0274 245 986 or

Kind regards

St Anthony's Board of Trustees

Board Elections Announcement

Our Board is sad to say goodbye to members Kate Riddell and Amber Proudfoot who have worked for 6 and 3 years respectively as elected parent representatives on our Board. Amber and Kate have dedicated a huge amount of their time and energy to St Anthony’s as board members and we will miss their expertise and passion for our students’ education and wellbeing. We are very fortunate that Amber is going to continue providing her time and expertise to seek out grants for the school. And St Mary’s school is very fortunate that they got to snap up Kate as a board member for their school (where Kate’s daughter is a student).

The great news is that we are very lucky to welcome Miriama Williams to the Board as an elected parent representative. Miriama brings a wealth of expertise including board of trustee’s experience from St Catherine’s school in Kilbirnie. We also welcome back elected parent representatives Andrew Pink, Emma Blades, and George Bouras. Our proprietor’s representatives remain David Sullivan, Anne Dowden, and Mark Mulhern, as well as Helen Revill our Staff Representative. You can read more about our board members here

One of the main roles of Boards of Trustees is to support our staff to set and reach student achievement targets each year. In order to determine the targets for the year, our staff start with the curriculum level our students are currently performing at and then through a targeted approach determine an achievable (but stretch) curriculum level for them to reach by the end of the school year. The Board have agreed with the recommendation from staff of a stretch target of 88% of students to be at or above the expected curriculum level in reading, writing and maths by the end of this school year. The staff have carefully designed a programme of initiatives to enable our students to reach this target. These initiatives include targeted use of teacher aide time, carefully selected learning resources, and continuing to strengthen our home/school partnerships (for example encouraging families to read with their children to develop a sense of pleasure of reading together).

Important Notice regarding events in Christchurch

Kia ora St Anthony's School whānau

I write with reference to the school’s response to Friday’s events in Christchurch. I know that you will all stand with me in sending our prayers and condolences to all those who have been affected by this terrible act of violence, those who have lost loved ones, those who are injured or those whose whānau are injured. We also send our heartfelt gratitude to the emergency and support services who will be working tirelessly with the victims and their families over this terrible time.

I would also like to acknowledge the work of my principal, teacher and support staff colleagues in Christchurch, who once again, stood staunchly alongside their precious students in a time of extreme fear. Many of them will be working with the victims and families of victims once their children return to school. Some of them will have colleagues working with them whose families have been directly affected by this tragedy. Kia kaha to all those people.

Whilst we hope and pray that this event in Christchurch is an isolated occurrence, I would like to inform you a little more about our school’s already established lockdown procedures. Should the school ever be placed into lockdown, we will endeavour to communicate with you via text and email to ensure you are informed of the ongoing situation. We will communicate directly with staff to keep them apprised of the situation and also liaise directly with the Police. In the case of a lockdown lasting longer than a few minutes, we have buckets in the classrooms, which will enable children to go to the toilet if needed. We also have access to water.

We ask that parents DO NOT come to school in a lockdown situation, as this can place you in danger, and we are unable to let you into any part of the school. Staff and children can only be released by myself or Denise Johnson, our DP.

I have received messages from parents requesting advice around conversations with children about what has happened. Please see the links below to articles that may help you with keeping your conversations developmentally appropriate. I will be working to ensure that the staff feel equipped to deal sensitively with any questions or concerns that may arise.

MOE Advice

Conversations about Trauma

Conversations about Terrorism

On Monday, some New Zealand schools are holding assemblies and liturgies to remember the victims of the attack. We will be having a School Liturgy at 9am in Tui classroom and whānau are invited to attend. I thank Francesca von Lanthen, our DRS for planning our short time of prayer and reflection together.

Finally, as a school, we will be contacting our local mosque in Kilbirnie to express our solidarity and sorrow with them. As a faith community, it is important that we come together with our fellow New Zealanders in their and our time of need.

In the meantime, we pray.…

Eternal rest grant unto them oh Lord and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen.

.... and for the injured and those who are affected in a myriad of other ways....

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now, and at the hour of our death.


With God’s blessings; Mā te Atua koe e tiaki

Jennifer Ioannou