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Te Kauhua: Professional learning – key messages

Filed under: Productive partnerships | Effective leaders

Tags: Te Kauhua | getting started | Henderson Intermediate



Bruce Dale – Principal, Henderson Intermediate

The core of all this is relationships, relationships and expectations. And those two things – you get them right, you're fine.

Marion Shand – Te Kauhua Facilitator

Ultimately, we do know that engaging with the whānau is important. That has had an impact on the rest of the school. We hardly do anything without asking: “What does the whānau have to say about this first?”. And for me that is one of the biggest changes.

Clayton Smith – Henderson Intermediate

Never underestimate the power of whānau and what they can offer your school. They have come up with things that we never thought of. And they have fixed issues that professionals couldn't fix. They have got expertise that is untapped, and you just need to go up there and source it.

Marion Shand

We do have the ability to self-correct and evolve as a school. And if you listen long enough, you find out what your school needs and how to fix it within the school. And that has been the success of Te Kouhua – having in-school facilitators. We hear all the time: “Because we are talking to the students, we know the whānau, we know the culture of the school”.

Clayton Smith

I think the use of lead teachers was critical here. Helped spread the load and made our job easier. More people involved, more people with knowledge, more people with the expertise – can only be better. Makes it easier for sustainability.

Marion Shand

And it’s the whole transparency – what you know, everybody else should know, and there shouldn't be any secrets. So what the school knew, the whānau knew, the students knew, the teachers knew, and they made a decision collectively.

One thing that has been instrumental in all this is the passion and respect that the people involved. And they found it very very very hard, but it grew. And because of the passion, that mainly Clayton, Marion and Bruce had, they became more competent as time went on.

Marlene Wipani – Henderson Intermediate

It’s made a difference to children – and that was the wonderful thing about it, that was the reward. And, you know, just thinking if you can do little things, little steps, you can make a huge difference.

Marion Shand

I think whānau are becoming the demanding constituents – that kahikatea that the Ministry want them to be. They are able to have a voice, they know who is going to listen, so they are asking the challenging questions now.

Responding to “demanding constituents” has been the catalyst for changes in teaching practice at Henderson Intermediate - changes achieved through a process of reflecting upon the evidence available and responding to student need.

Link to this video in Vimeo.

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