Positive Behaviour for Learning
Opihi College is a PB4L school. We are guided by our C.A.R.E. values and students are rewarded for displaying positive behaviour in line with our values.
Care and Guidance
There is a strong and well developed pastoral network at Opihi. House Tutors are the focal point of the school’s wide relationship with the student and the family/whanau. As the Tutor groups are “vertical” (they include students from Year 7 to Year 13), the House Tutor remains with the same group from year to year, and a strong relationship can form throughout a student’s years at school. As well as House Tutor, there is a Dean for each House, so the pastoral needs of every student are catered for during the student’s time at Opihi College.
In addition, there is a Guidance Counsellor for individual help/guidance, and a Pastoral Dean to oversee the whole network.
We also offer a career guidance programme which starts in the junior school. Senior students who are looking at further study at tertiary institutions benefit from a range of guidance programmes and monitoring, to ensure that they meet the entry requirements.
Students at Opihi College regularly demonstrate strong academic success. Our students regularly achieve well above the National mean for NCEA Level 1, 2 and 3. We also compare favourable against other schools in our region. In 2012, for example, 94% of our students achieved NCEA Level 3 compared with 76% for all schools in New Zealand.
Special Needs Education
When students arrive at Opihi College, we look at the individual needs of students. Where we are aware of students that have special education needs, we will create a learning plan, usually in conjunction with the family/whanau. We endeavour to ensure that all students are able to be successful.
We also have a very well equipped unit with dedicated staff at our Kowhai House. Here, high needs ORRS (Ongoing Renewable Resource Scheme) students are catered for with one-to-one attention from teacher aides.
This facility also provides the option for students who are struggling in mainstream classes to transfer to, for one or two lessons per week and have additional support for a short period of time.
A feature of Opihi College is our Peer Support Programme. Our Year 12 and 13 students are selected to run the programme the year prior to delivery and undergo training. At the start of the year they are charged with introducing Year 7 students into the school through Peer Support. The senior students run activities each week aimed at introducing students to the school and assist with developing strong peer relationships.
In 2013, we introduced a full day activity called HIYS (Hi, Year Sevens). This was a great success and both junior and senior students found it invaluable. The day focused on team building, personal organisation, problem solving and leadership exercises. Bonds developed in the Peer Support programme may exist for students long after leaving Opihi College. This is a real strength of the school.
We encourage students to take on leadership roles within the school. This starts early with students being elected to sit on the Student Council and provides a voice for the students. As students’ progress through the school there are a variety of leadership roles they may wish to take such as:
- House Leader
- Student Council
- Sports Captains
- Student Librarian
- Buddy Reading
- Orientation Guide
- Board of Trustee Representative