We are proud of our classrooms as they portray the children’s learning. We very much agree that each child’s classroom is a vital element of their learning and includes support with resources, peer groupings, devices, furniture and displays of work pertaining to the unit of work the school collaboratively plans.
Our library is vibrant, containing over 4000 titles including picture books, novels, nonfiction, graphic novels and reference materials. The library is open every day where children are free to visit. Each class visits the library weekly, where they borrow books, use computers to research new learning and spend time reading.
At Rapaura we are committed to provide a comprehensive swimming programme in our pool. The school’s solar-heated 20-metre swimming pool enables us to offer daily swimming lessons in Term 1 and Term 4. Children also have the opportunity to swim during the lunch break.
Our grounds include a large grass area, an all-weather court area for tennis, netball, basketball and more. Other features are a sandpit, adventure playground, native garden area and edible gardens. The children attend these gardens, as part of their learning. Citrus trees are grown for the children to enjoy.
The Rapaura District has had a hall since 1907 and the present hall has been located across from the school since 1964. Thanks to the excellent efforts of past and present Rapaura community families our school is able to hold gymnastics, sports practices, Spring Show stalls, visiting performers and other gatherings in the hall.
School Bus/Oscar Programme
We offer a Ministry funded bus service for eligible students, and parents arrange their own car-pooling to transport children to and from school. A mini-van delivers students to OSCAR, the after-school programme.
History of Rapaura School
Photo courtesy of the Marlborough Historical Society.
Rapaura School opened its doors in 1862 to a roll of about 7 students and by 1867 the numbers had doubled. The Rapaura School, of old, has many similarities with our school today: a very active and engaged parent community, a commitment of getting students to and from school and delivering a rich-authentic learning programme. We are relieved to note however, that our present principal does not carry a black supplejack cane as her erstwhile colleague, Miss Florence Prichard, did in 1892.
Looking through the student rolls of Rapaura School, you continually find family names repeated throughout the generations: Ganes, Giffords, Roses, Dodsons, Neals, Matthews, Rudds, Soper… This continuity has created a solid base for our school, which has helped us, grow and nurture successions of generations since 1862. Our 150th anniversary celebrations, held at Labour Weekend 2012, were enjoyed by a large number of past and present families.
An excellent history of Rapaura families and school is found in ‘Rapaura: The growing heart of Marlborough’ by Nevil and Prue Matthews. The Rapaura School library has copies of the book for sale and/or loan.
Rapaura School Traditions
Rapaura School is proud of the many traditions it has maintained for it’s present and past families.
Meet The Teacher BBQ
While whanau are welcome to come to Rapaura at anytime, we also provide an opportunity at the beginning of the year for new and existing families to catch up. We hold a family BBQ, which creates opportunities to visit your child/ren’s new class and meet their teacher and time to catch up with friends and new families of the school.
Early Term 1, the whole school travels to Whites Bay to explore and participate in a day’s activities based at the beach. The children explore rock pools, experience ocean swimming, rock climbing and short walks. This day is very much supported and attended by many parents.
Country Harvest Fair
This well known, well-respected fair is held annually in March. This is the school’s biggest fundraiser, which is hugely successful and hugely supported by the Marlborough community. The fair is well known for: many stalls selling local wares, titanic slide, cake stall, chocolate wheel, fresh produce, crazy trailer rides, book sales and a huge jumble sale.
Poetry In The Vines
Biannually the school has the opportunity to visit a neighbouring vineyard beside a pond. This is a very special day, as the children have a chance to recite their own poetry in front of family, friends and the wider Rapaura community.
Cross Country In The Vines
We are indeed fortunate to have access of another neighbouring vineyard to host our school Cross Country. The children run around the picturesque course and cross the finish line with their family and friends cheering them on.
Spring Show/Pet Day
Held annually in Term 4, the Spring Show is a New Zealand country school must. This is our community day where the children display their inventive talents whether it is vegetable creations, poetry, photography, flower/plant arrangements or baking. Pets and farm animals fill the fields at the school and the highly contested lamb-feeding race wraps up the day. Rapaura is very fortunate to have the support of the wider community with many of the families in the district coming back year after year to judge the children’s contributions.
Our school leadership model comes from our senior Year 7 & 8 seniors and based on our NZ parliament. Each term a Prime Minister, Speaker and cabinet are voted for. The cabinet includes: Minister of Sport & Leisure, Minister of Youth & Affairs, Minister of New Entrants, Minister of ICT, Minister of Music, Minister of Literacy, Minister of Communication, Minister of Cultural, Minister of Finance, Minister of Education, Minister of Environment, Minister of Health and Housing.
The Prime Minister is responsible for overseeing his/her cabinet and welcoming any guests/speakers and/or visitors to the school. The Ministers provide many initiatives for the rest the students. For example, the Ministers of Sport and Leisure organise a whole school game for all students on a Friday afternoon and the Minister of Music have organised ‘Rapaura Voice,’ and many more fun events.
Education Outside The Classroom
Our school camps are fun-filled opportunities for educational challenges, team-building and personal growth. Recently our students have visited Mistletoe Bay, Wellington, Tea Pot Valley and Lake Rotoiti.