School Information


The school is open in the mornings from 8.15am.  Please ensure your children are at school by 8.45am, so they can be unpacked and ready to start learning at 9.00am.

The School Office is open from 8.30am until 2.30pm Monday – Friday, during the term. 


If your child is sick or unable to attend school, please make contact with the school before 8.55am. For your child’s safety, unexplained absences are routinely followed up. Teachers keep a daily record of attendance. 


The Board of Trustees is required to report each year on the financial management of the school and the progress it has made towards achieving the goals set out in its Charter. For more information, please contact the BOT via the school office. 

Latest reports:


Students who arrive late to school must check in at the school Office before going to their classroom.

Please notify the Office or your child’s teacher if your child needs to leave school early for an appointment. Children can be collected from the school Office. 


​Each of our students is assigned a 'school bike' which they can ride during break times. We have the following rules to help mitigate any accidents:


Nina Booth - School Principal

Shea Gillbanks - Presiding Member

Nicole Mallinder - Elected Member

Rebekah Mudford - Elected Member

Linda Spearpoint - Staff Representative


Bunnythorpe School has a “zero tolerance” approach to bullying. Bullying of any kind - verbal or physical - will not be tolerated. Students are encouraged to report incidents of bullying, no matter how minor they may seem, to their teacher, the duty teacher, or the Principal. Students are taught strategies about how to deal with any incidents of behaviour they do not like.

At Bunnythorpe School we encourage children to be responsible for their own actions and to treat others as they would like to be treated. We encourage an atmosphere where children feel comfortable speaking out about bullying and unacceptable behaviour. Parents will be called if behaviour is causing concern, so that the home and school can work through the issues together. Recurrent disruptive, abusive or aggressive behaviour and wilful damage will result in further action.


Students must not use cellphones at school. If a student needs to have a phone after school, parents must get permission from the Principal. Phones will be handed into the Office for safe keeping for the day. Phones found at school without permission will be confiscated.


The Charter is an important document that outlines the direction for Bunnythorpe School. It is developed by the Board of Trustees in consultation with our school community and is regularly reviewed. Policies on all aspects of school management are also developed and reviewed by the Board. We use a Central web based management platform to store all of our Policies called SchoolDocs.  



Yrs 1-8 Teaching Principal Nina Booth

Principal Release Myra Paton  (Tuesday and Wednesday)


The Board of Trustees is committed to building and maintaining a strong partnership with the whole community. From time to time you will have the opportunity to respond to surveys from the Board. Community meetings, forums and surveys are held periodically where parents have the opportunity to share their ideas on a range of issues.


If there are problems at school or you are unhappy about something, please talk to your child's teacher or contact the office as soon as possible. We are always happy to help and want to put things right.


It is important that the information we have about your child is up to date. Please let us know of any changes, especially telephone contact numbers, health issues and guardianship. From time to time we will need to contact families if a child is unwell or we have a serious incident. It can be very difficult and time-consuming for us, and stressful for your child, if we cannot contact you quickly. We update all contact information for students twice a year - beginning of Term 1 and 3.


The school holds a Cross Country event for all students in Term 2. All children participate over distances appropriate for their age.

A Kainui Cluster Cross Country event is held in Term 2 at Awahou. Students are selected to represent our school in various age groups.


Every year, and at Enrolment, families must complete the Digital Citizenship Agreement for each student before that child can use devices. The Agreement outlines the school's policy and rules for the acceptable use of the internet and all areas of ICT at school.

We will request permission at Enrolment for the school to publish a child's image and/or school work online. It is important that parents understand these issues. If you have any questions, please ask. 


Dental therapists will treat preschoolers and students at the Ross Intermediate Dental Clinic, Freyberg Street, Palmerston North, (06) 358 4572. You are welcome to contact the dental therapists at any time if you have concerns about your child’s oral health. Please phone Child and Adolescent Oral Health (06) 350 8619 or (0800) 825 583.


Dogs are not permitted in the school grounds unless part of the school programme. Please let us know if you see a dog in the school grounds out of school hours. 


Bunnythorpe School is a Duffy School. Students get to pick 2 brand new books per term that they get to take home and cherish, these books belong to them!  These are presented at Duffy Book assemblies which are held at the end of each term. There are also 'Caught Being Good' books which are presented to students at various times during the year based on our School values of PROUD.


Prospective students and their families are encouraged to visit the school, prior to enrolling, to meet the Principal and support staff, and take a tour of the school and classrooms. Please contact Kat in the Office on 06 3292777 for more information and to make an appointment.

Before-School Visits: Preschoolers will visit for up to  6 sessions before officially starting school. Our Office Administrator will arrange these visits with you. During these visits, you can collect your enrolment forms, Information Book and student stationery from the Office.

These visits are set out as follows:

2 visits up to morning tea break

2 visits up to lunch break

2 visits for the whole day

These visits are designed to be spread out over 6 weeks with one visit per week on a set day. The day for preschool visits is a Thursday but can be changed to suit daycare or work commitments.

Little Bunnies Playgroup also offers school visits for 4 yr olds. These take place on Thursdays (even weeks) for 20 mins 10.10am - 10.30am.

New entrant children may start on or after their 5th birthday. Children will not be able to attend school until all paperwork has been completed and returned to the Office.  

​Enrolment Process - to enrol a student we will require:

You will complete enrolment forms for the school, as well as for the MDHB Dental Service, and you will complete a Digital Citizenship Agreement for your child (regarding the safe and responsible use of computers, other IT devices and the internet).

All enrolment forms are available at the school Office. Please note: children will not be able to attend school until all paperwork has been completed and returned to the Office.

For children transferring from another school in New Zealand, we will contact that school to confirm that students have enrolled at a new school and request their academic information for our teachers.


Bunnythorpe School has a popular Facebook page. Regular posts keep everyone up-to-date with school news, photos and important daily notices about events e.g. school closures, sports cancellations. 


Head lice are a recurring problem in all schools and we appreciate families doing their best to control outbreaks. We have headlice combs and treatment available at the school office if you require these. Students will need to stay at home until completion of the first treatment.


Please keep us informed of any heath issues that may affect your child at school or impact on their ability to learn. We update student health records and contact details at the start of each school year. See also "Illness, Accidents & Emergencies" below. 


"Homework" is a topic that can cause much tension in families. At Bunnythorpe School, we have given this issue much consideration and have produced our own philosophy on "Home Learning".

Our expectations around Home Learning:


Students do occasionally become ill or hurt themselves at school. We have a well-equipped sick-bay. All staff have experience and training in first aid. Unless injuries or health concerns are minor, we will consult with families and may send children home. If we cannot contact you directly, we will use your emergency contacts. In emergencies, we may contact your GP for further advice or call an ambulance. Families give permission at Enrolment for emergency medical care to be sought on their behalf.

Please keep your contact details up-to-date and let us know if you have any concerns about your child’s health. 


We also accept online or internet banking payments for most school events or activities, including stationery purchases, camp fees. Our bank account details are:  12 31430183717 00 (ASB Palmerston North). Please use student or family name, event and/or invoice number as a reference. Make sure online payments are received by the school by the due date. 


Our school has a very well-resourced library. All children are able to borrow books each week. Senior and Junior students have a 30 minute allocated time on Thursday. During this time students enjoy 'storytime', choose new books and learn library skills.


The school requests that you name all your child’s clothing. This makes it easier to locate the owner of items. This is especially important during the swimming season.


Bunnythorpe School participates in the Ka Ora, Ka Ako - Healthy School Lunches Programme.

Our lunches are provided by Libelle in Palmerston North. Information about the menu is available at the following website...We also inform families via our newsletter.


Unless specifically requested by a GP or medical specialist, medication will NOT be administered by school staff to students at school. 


Fortnightly newsletters are sent home with students Fridays to keep you informed of events at school. The newsletter is also available from the Newsletters page on this website as well as on the Facebook site. Newsletters will be sent out every odd week during term time.


There are often opportunities for parents/caregivers to assist in the classroom or to help with special projects such as ‘art days’ or sports practices. If you are available to act as a parent-help, whether on a regular basis or for a short period only, please talk with your child’s teacher or contact the Office. A form will be sent out at the beginning of each term to call for helpers for specific tasks around the school. Please note that it may not always be suitable for preschoolers to accompany you while you are parent-helping.


The staff at Bunnythorpe School are responsible for the social and emotional well-being and safety of all our students. The school has a genuine concern for the pastoral care of our students. If there are personal or confidential matters affecting your child that may impact on their learning or behaviour, we hope you will feel comfortable talking to us and allow us to find ways to offer support. 


Bunnythorpe School holds a Pet Day in Term 4, in conjunction with the 'Manawatu Oroua Boys and Girls Agricultural Club'. Pet Day is very much a whole-school and community day and takes place on a Saturday. Pet Day includes calf, lamb and kid (goat) competitions, dogs and other pets. Information and entry forms will be available in Term 3 via the newsletter. Children are also involved in fun indoor classroom exhibits, for example sand saucers, vege creations, miniature gardens etc. Details are given in class.  


School photos are taken in Term 3.


Little Bunnies operates a playgroup onsite Tuesdays and Thursdays 9.30 - 11.30. See Little Bunnies Facebook page for more information

The 4yr old children from Little Bunnies are welcome to join in with the classroom programme for a 20 minute session every Thursday fortnight on even weeks throughout the term.


Information that is collected by the school about your child becomes part of their essential school records. Your child's records may be viewed on request at the school. Families give permission at Enrolment for pupil information to be forwarded to appropriate health and educational authorities, within the limitations of the Privacy Act. The school has a designated Privacy Officer to discuss inquiries about students’ privacy.


Public Health nurses work with our school to provide health information for teachers and families, and to carry out routine vision and hearing tests and vaccination programmes. See also "Vision and Hearing" below. Individual children can be referred to the Public Health Service for assistance with health or welfare issues.  

Public Health nurses carry out routine immunisations at the school (e.g.  HPV or Year 7 dTaP vaccinations). Information packs and consent forms are sent home prior to any vaccination programme. The school is required to maintain an Immunisation Register with data on all students. We collect this information at Enrolment. 


Families can meet with the teacher at any time if they want to know more about their child's learning, if they want guidance on how to best support their learning at home, or if they have any concerns or problems.

Learning Conferences are held in Term 3 and Reports are sent home on the last day in Terms 2 and 4.


ALL of the school property is smoke-free and vape-free at all times.


Students at all levels will take part in a wide range of sport and fitness activities as part of our physical education programme, including athletics, swimming, triathlon, ball skills, cycling


Our Kainui Cluster provides regular sporting events throughout the year for all ages. Students will be given information about these events in class and in the school newsletters.


There will be opportunities for Bunnythorpe students to join in with other schools for after school sports. Children will have the opportunity to be involved in various sports teams in after-school competitions. These may include joining in with other schools to make up a team. Full information is available at the beginning of each sport’s season.


At Enrolment, and at the beginning of each school year, students are issued with the stationery they require. An invoice will be issued. Children can purchase additional stationery during the year from the Office. All students can bring a pencil case if they wish for coloured pencils etc. 


The school has a 'no hat means no play' policy. Students will be issued a sunhat for their use and these musts stay at school. Students must wear sunhats for Terms 1 and 4.  Students may bring their own hat providing is has a wide brim, which shades the face, ears and neck. It must not have any inappropriate language, symbols, advertising or a draw string. Sunscreen is available at school to use during the summer months. If your child requires a specific type of sunscreen please ensure it is in their bag every day. On school outings all students will wear a school issued hat. 


During Term 1 all students take part in a daily swimming programme. They need to bring togs and towel in a waterproof bag every day. ​We recommend that students also wear sunscreen in the pool. If your child is unable to participate in swimming on a particular day, please let us know. Senior students are able to participate in the Kainui Senior Swimming Sports which are held in February/March. 


The community may use the school pool outside of school hours (dates to be notified). Pool keys can be purchased at the start of the swimming season. An agreement regarding Conditions of Use must be signed before keys are issued. See the newsletter or Facebook page for details.


Teaching in specialist technology areas for Year 7 and 8 students is provided at Te Kura Waenga O Tirohanga (Monrad Intermediate - Technology Rooms), all year round on Monday mornings. Technology includes a range of topics such as electronics, art & design, soft materials (sewing & textiles), food technology (cooking), hard materials (woodwork) and ICT. A progress report is issued by Monrad at the end of each topic.


We really appreciate parents/caregivers being able to provide transport for school trips and sporting events. However, we must insist that:

Unfortunately we will not be able to accept offers of transport if the vehicle does not comply with these safety requirements. On some trips it may not be appropriate for pre-schoolers to attend with families that are providing transport.

Full information and permission slips will be given out prior to each trip.



Routine Vision and Hearing tests are carried out at the school by Public Health technicians. Families give consent at Enrolment for their children to be tested. Any student that may have a hearing or vision problem can be referred for testing at any time. Please speak to your classroom teacher or Office staff if you have any concerns. The Public Health Service also runs regular free vision & hearing clinics. Please phone (06) 350 4560 or 0800 153 042 for more information and to make an appointment.