We hope that you are all okay, that your loved ones are safe and that you managed to get some well deserved rest last night.

We can not even begin to find the words to express the terrible tragedy that has befallen our city. It is not something that can be easily understood or made sense of. It was frightening, unsettling, upsetting and just impossible to imagine how someone could be so consumed by hatred that they would take such extreme action. 

We know that we are more than just a school. We are a community whose care and compassion stretches beyond the classroom and into our wider worlds. Events such as yesterday serve as a reminder of just what a special place Ao Tawhiti is. We thank you for your patience as we placed the school into lock down. Your support for us during this time and the trust you placed in us too look after your children was very much appreciated. 

As we are sure you are aware the staff of our school stepped up in the most amazing manner. We are so very grateful for all of their work yesterday. Their calmness under pressure to care for our students was just phenomenal. Their absolute dedication to ensuring our students was cared for and delivered home to their whanau was incredibly inspiring. Our community is certainly blessed to have  people like this who care for our  tamariki.

We will have all been effected in different ways, everyone in our community will have a personal connection to this tragedy. If you need some help or support please just let us know. 

Again our heartfelt thanks to you all.