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Frequently Asked Questions ...answered by the Friends' Association

I’m new and have lots of little questions regarding the daily routine– who can I ask?
GrammarNet is a great place to start – a lot of information is here! The staff are also used to being asked various questions regarding the school day and routines. Additionally, the office staff is always happy to try and help anytime. If the Uniform Shop is open, the staff there has lots of experience with the school routines, and can answer most questions too. Each class also has a “Class Friend” identified, and this person is a focal point for specific class questions, and can be contacted by phone or email. 

How do I find my Class Friend?
Hopefully, they will contact all the parents in the class at the beginning of term to identify themselves, and to set up activities for the parents and children during the year. The list of Class Friends is in the Resources on the Friends Association page here on GrammarNet.

How do I find out who is in my child’s class?
Near to the beginning of the year, a full class list is distributed to all parents. If you arrived mid-term or mid-year, you will need to request this list from either the class teacher or from the School Office.

Can I come to school assemblies?
Assemblies are held in the hall in the Specialist Block.
Parents do not generally come to Prep School assembly but if you know that your child is performing or receiving an award, feel free to come...and if you just want to see what happens at the assembly, ask the Dean of Girls' or Boys' school who will only too willing to let you sit in. 
The Prep School assembly is held on Tuesday at 2.45pm.
Junior School assembly on Friday at 2.15pm is open to parents, family and friends

Does my child have to attend the services in the Cathedral?
Yes, all Y1-8 pupils are expected to attend each service and it is hoped that parents will join the school worship, too. There is one service per term and these are listed in the School Calendar.

How do I meet other parents? 
Come a bit early at pick up, park, and then mill around in the playground. Get a babysitter and attend your class events arranged by your Class Friend. Come to the various Friends events open to the school family. Offer to help at school events and activities. Work in the Uniform Shop for a couple of hours a week or fortnight. Attend sports and swimming days, and Saturday sports.

What is BOSS?
BOSS is the Board of Senior Students. This is a group of  Y8 children who, with teacher guidance, arrange events during the year to fundraise for charitable and other good causes. These events include the annual Boss Fair in Term IV and a gold-coin Mufti day once a term.

How does my child address his/her teacher?
In the Prep School, pupils can address their teacher by, Mr, Mrs or Ms and their last name or male teachers are called “Sir” and female teachers are called “Ma’am” (rhymes with "spam"). The Headmaster is called “Headmaster”.

Parking at Drop-off or Pick-up Time
It does get very busy on Chester Street during morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up times. Some parents try to come a bit earlier or later to avoid the crush – there is a 5-minute parking restriction on the street at busy times, but most parents are prepared to take the risk of a parking ticket.
One alternative is to try and park on one of the surrounding streets, and walk to and from school. Park Terrace, Armagh Street, Cranmer Square and Kilmore Street all have some free-of-charge parking spaces, and there is space in Botanical Gardens.
It can be useful to have your child spend some time in the Family Room (Junior School) or Prep Room (Prep Schools) doing some homework, and to then pick them up at a less busy time later in the afternoon.
We are not allowed to park in Christ’s College at any time. For parking  for events at College - Sports day, Swimming Sports, events in the College hall or chapel - please park on the cobbled area at school, use the metered street parking or the Botanic Gardens parking.

How do summer and winter sports work in the Prep Schools?
Pupils must play team sport on a Saturday for the school during the winter. Sport choices include hockey, rugby and netball.
Saturday sport in the summer is not compulsory but the children are encouraged to play Saturday cricket for the school teams or Saturday tennis for our affiliate club, Hagley Park Tennis Club.

Junior School Sport and Clubs
After-school clubs and sports offer a range of activities in the Junior School. Children in Years 2 & 3 have  winter sport options with after-school practices and Saturday games: this is commitment for Terms II & III. 
A booklet is issued at the end of each term to enrol your child for the club activities in the forthcoming term. 

Swimming Sports, Term I
All Prep School children compete in the Swimming Heats and Championship Finals. Children will need their full sports uniform, including full tracksuit, plus togs (see below) and two towels. Googles are optional, as is a cap, although girls with longer hair will need one. 
Parents are invited to attend the Swimming Finals at Christ’s College pool, and a proportion do, but be prepared for a long, hot and very noisy event! The Final programme is published in advanced and includes the start time for each heat. The Finals run pretty much to time, and races will not start early.

Swimming Togs
There is an optional school swimsuit, available from the Uniform Shop. However, most children wear their own togs - just so long as they are not beach shorts. Rash vests may not - and need not! -  be worn in the Swimming Sports or during swimming lessons.


Swim Lessons
The Pre-School, Junior School, and Y4-6s have swimming and other aquatic lessons at different times during the year.  You will be given full details about what is required for these lessons.

School Cross-country, Term II
All Junior School and Prep School pupils run the Cross-country in Hagley Park early in Term II.
Parents are most welcome to spectate but make sure you dress warmly, and think carefully about  footwear before you leave home, as it can be muddy.  Gumboots are always a good idea! 
Also, make sure you know the age-group in which your child is running and what colour of House top they are wearing as they disappear into the distance!
Children can leave with parents at the conclusion of the final race.  Just remember to tell your child's class teacher first.

Sports Day, Term IV
Sports Day is held at Christ's College in Term IV.  Each department of the school takes part and parents are encouraged to attend and bring a picnic lunch. The Prep School programme is published in advance, including approximate race times. The Junior School has its own races before lunch and field events after. The Pre-School arrives just before lunch for their races and then they are able to leave with parents.
Prep children can leave with parents at the conclusion of Sports Day after the presentation of the trophies. Just remember to tell your child's class teacher first.

Optional Sports Activities
When the children are in Prep School particularly, there are occasionally options for  other sports in which children can participate to represent the school. These often take  place outside of school hours, eg: triathlon. The children will be notified of these opportunities verbally by sports' staff, via a noticeboard in school or via a notice in the Daily Notices on GrammarNet. It is up to your child to (i) avail themselves of such opportunities, and (ii) tell you or pass on the letter about the activity. If they don’t, they may miss the opportunity. 

Help! I need a critical piece of school uniform, and the Uniform Shop is closed. What can I do?
The manager of the Uniform Shop, Ms Linda Hazel, will try to help outside of normal opening hours, and is available via email at uniformshop@cathedralgrammar.school.nz . Ms Hazel can leave items in the office, and these can be paid for there and picked up at your convenience.

Do I need to buy a complete school tracksuit for my Prep School child?
Yes. The children wear their full tracksuits to and from all sporting activities during the week, to external sporting events and for Saturday sport.
Children in the Chapel Choirs can wear their sports' uniform and tracksuit to school and their 8.00am rehearsals on the days that they have Fitness first thing in the morning.
Prep pupils may go home in their sports' uniform after Thursday sport provided they are wearing their full tracksuit. But, don’t mix formal uniform and tracksuits/sports' uniform, eg: a blazer and tracksuit trousers – it is either all one thing or the other.

Do I need to buy a Cathedral Grammar Prep School backpack?
No, it is optional. However, around 90% or the children have the maroon school backpack, which is available from the Uniform Shop if you wish one.

What can girls wear in their hair?
Plain maroon, black or white headbands, ties or slides. The Uniform Shop also sells fabric headbands made of the same checked material as the winter kilts and summer dresses and skirts.

Is jewellery allowed to be worn?
The school discourages the wearing of jewellery at school for both safety and security reasons. For an accurate itemisation of what may be worn, read the Uniform Policy on GrammarNet.  

What about the socks?
Yes, there are various socks to be worn for various terms and sports activities, and these also vary by the age and gender of your child! It gets a little more complicated as the children reach Prep School. For a list of uniform, including pictures, look under Information > Uniform on GrammarNet. If in doubt, ask at the Uniform Shop.

        *  Boys' Prep summer – long, Montreal grey cotton socks
        *  Boys' Prep winter – long, dark grey wool with striped top socks
        *  Boys' Cathedral Choir – black knee-length socks
        *  Girls' Prep summer – white ankle cotton socks
        *  Girls' Prep winter – black knee-length socks or black tights
        *  Summer PE – white ankle sports' socks
        *  Winter PE + Hockey & Rugby teams – long maroon with 'Grammar' on the sides
        *  Netball teams – white ankle sports' socks