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International Newsletter

Tuesday 18 August 2020

Kia ora koutou.

Term 3 had started well with winter sport in full swing, the NZCT Chamber Music competition, Timaru Boys’ High School and Craighead Diocesan School Sports Exchange, ski trips, academic field trips, school cross country, Year 10 students at Camp in the College’s lodge at Castle Hill, a great Prefects’ Assembly and of course International Week.

With New Zealand borders still closed for the remainder of 2020, this has put a lot of pressure on students and families to make long term decisions whether to stay in New Zealand for the Christmas/New Zealand Summer holidays and start the 2021 school year, or return back to their home country to be with family and not be able to return for the new school year.

There is still a lot of uncertainty regarding the opening of New Zealand’s borders and the recent outbreak of COVID-19 has not helped this process to be sped up. I will continue to provide up-to-date information as it comes to me. If you have any questions or queries, please do not hesitate to contact me.

COVID-19 Update
The current situation is Auckland is in Alert Level 3 – Lockdown, while the rest of the country is in Alert Level 2. Some of the key points about Alert Level 2 are:

  • crowds of only 100 people – education institutions are exempt from this and are considered their own bubble;
  • physical distancing of 1–2 metres is advised, but not compulsory;
  • general hygiene, especially washing of hands is crucial;
  • masks are not mandatory but advised in areas of close proximity.

St Andrew’s College has taken extra measures to practice good hand hygiene, one way systems into buildings and physical distancing, for example no hugging and keeping numbers in confined spaces low. Please below find links to what St Andrew’s College are doing to help support and secure our students are safe.




Palē Tauti
Director of International Students and Exchanges

Pale Tauti

Around the College


Jamie Howell (Year 12) – International Leader

This term, the International Leaders have been very busy running an inter-school international themed dinner, and international week. The International Dinner was a huge success providing international students from schools all around Christchurch an opportunity to meet other international students, socialise, and enjoy some good food. International Week at St Andrew’s College got people involved with trying new things and making some good food. The beginning of International Week began with the food fear factor, pushing students out of their comfort zone trying snails and participating in a wasabi and chilli eating challenge. Green tea and miso soup was handed out and was much appreciated on the cold mornings. The dumpling making, lead by some of our international students, were very tasty and allowed some to try their hand at making their own. Despite the stress that COVID-19 is causing, our international students continue to move forward and put on a brave face. The possibility of having to be away from your family and home country for over 12 months is a very daunting idea, especially for those who only intended on staying for a term or so. St Andrew’s and the International Leaders are continuing to work hard to ensure that the extra time they spend here will be as enjoyable as possible.

Jamie Howell
trio 8


Samuel and Christine Jeon (Year 12 and Year 9) and Juliette Ma of Burnside High School were a part of the trio Les Apaches who qualified for the top six at the NZCT Chamber Music finals, after winning the South Island regional division. All finalist gained a gold award for this outstanding achievement.


Year 11 international student Chaewon Kang, along with three of her teammates from Korea won the Shanghai Public Speaking and Debate Competition held on Saturday 27 – Sunday 28. The team went through five gruelling preliminary rounds before making it into the quarter-finals.

The team then advanced to the semi-finals and beat a strong Chinese team before facing a team from Taiwan in the grand-final. The grand-final topic was: Social minority movements should use violence, Chaewon’s team were to argue against this and won.

Chaewon picked up further accolades for Best Junior Speaker and third Best Speaker Overall from the tournament.

Chaewon Kang
Term 2 Dinner


Last term we had a wonderful evening, hosting students from the four independent boarding schools in Christchurch: Rangi Ruru Girls’ School, St Margaret’s College, Christ’s College and St Andrew’s College. It was a great evening of sharing food, fun games, reconnecting and meeting new students.


Head of Music at St Andrew's College, Duncan Ferguson, was last year named the top music teacher for 2019 at the fourth Annual Artisan Awards in Wellington and presented with the award at the Vodafone Music Awards.

“Music is a vitally important part of just about every young person’s life and so many more kids are making music than perhaps we realise," he says. “You’ve got students writing all this music in their bedrooms and writing it in spite of school music departments, not because of them.”

While Mr Ferguson is careful to stress the importance of traditional classical music education, he believes music departments need to be more inclusive. “That they open up their departments to students of all genres including hip hop, dub step and electronic music.It’s a matter of finding the thing that the kids really love in their musical lives, encouraging it, fostering it and giving them a creative space.”

ArtisanAwards2019VanessaRushtonPhotography 49


Last week we celebrated International Week in the Secondary School.The excitement of the week started with miso soup and hot green tea for students and staff arriving into school.This was followed by an entrée of ‘Food Fear Factor’ held by our Languages Department with an interesting spread of delicacies from Spain (chicken liver with mushroom and onions), France (snails braised with some interesting herbs) and finally Japan (wasabi on crackers). It took a brave soul with a cast iron stomach to consume and hold down these morsels.

During the week, students also enjoyed dumpling making and Chinese calligraphy, and today our assembly had an international twist, with speeches from Alan Fu, Ruthie Konusi (both Year 13), Zihui (Alisia) Ren and Jin Kim (both Year 9) followed by a wonderful performance from the Māori and Pasifika group.


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