Welcome to Jireh School
An integral part of being located in West Auckland is multiculturalism. It presents opportunities for the world to come to school in the form of and through interaction with our friends and their families.
One of the highlights of our year was a week of celebrating the 26 different cultures of our school. The richness in diversity was seen as we sang, danced, feasted, played traditional games, made crafts and enjoyed displays. The students learnt about themselves and their peers in a gamut of practical experiences. The students and staff were taken on fascinating journeys all over the world. It was fitting that we began the week with the cultures of New Zealand through waiata and karakia. We were privileged to have the Koumatua and whaea Dianne to teach us some Te Reo. The students made and learnt to how to use ti rakau sticks. There were mini sports with egg and spoon, three-legged races and gumboot throwing. Hopscotch and foursquare were played on the court. The older students learnt how to do finger knitting and the younger made kiwis and flags. The highlight of the day was a visiting kapa haka group who performed and taught the students kapa haka. Everyone enjoyed a delicious mini Pavlova. Tuesday was a feast of colour starting with various dances from our Pacifika families. The students learnt how to make an umu and how to grate coconut with a traditional chair. A fale was built on site. They learnt how to weave, make an ulalole, do Tongan dances and make masi designs. Lunch was fresh out of the umu along with other delights from huge pots; palusami, lulu, cassava and chop suey were among them. On Wednesday we visited Africa, Romania, Great Britain, Croatia, Albania and Italy.
The day started with a beautiful Romanian song by Ruth Pitas declaring God’s love for us. The display rooms were filled with interesting cultural artefacts. The parents treated the students to presentations on the various aspects of each culture. Students learnt traditional dance moves, how to make Ndebele dolls, braiding, face painting, arts and crafts and biltong making. The lunch fare was a feast of traditional African dishes from Ghana and southern Africa. Thursday began with an extravaganza of dances, songs and demonstrations from our Asian community. Then we were taken on a journey through Asia with fascinating facts and interesting cultural items and costumes. The students learnt how to wear a sari, make curries, dumplings and various Korean dishes. They played traditional games, learnt how to dance between bamboo poles and write their names in Japanese. Lunch was once again a feast of flavours, textures and colours from Malaysia, India, Korea, the Philippines, Indonesia and China. What a week of festivities and celebration. It is a privilege to be a part of such a generous and unified community.
There were at least 60 families who significantly contributed to make this week the great success that it was. We came together in love and unity to celebrate our unique identities, which find real significance in community. John 13:35 “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” To God be all the glory for allowing us to be part of His culture which overrides all others. Galatians 3:28 “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” It does feel like we have had a taste of Heaven.
At Jireh we enjoy a strong community committed to a common goal; to see students nurtured, grow and develop their talents and abilities to become all they can be to the glory of God and for his service. The curriculum at Jireh School affords a wide range of learning experiences where students can explore, discover, invent and create and where learning is a journey of fascination, wonder and wow moments. Our roll continues to grow steadily with each class having reached its maximum capacity. We started the year with an additional class and three new staff members. The future is full of promise as Jireh School enters a new phase of history. The Ministry of Education has signed our integration agreement for stand-alone status making Jireh a school in its own right with a roll increase and the inclusion of a year 7 and 8. 2017 will be a year of preparation and vision building and in 2018 Jireh School will no longer be a satellite of KingsWay School. And so God’s kingdom continues to extend across New Zealand through Christian Education. Once again we can say with gratitude and expectation, “Great is thy faithfulness, all we have needed Thy hand has provided.”
Principal, Jireh Christian School