Pupuke Kāhui Ako News – Term 1

Wellbeing                            Key Competencies                        Community Engagement

 ASL News: 
The first term of 2019 has been an extremely busy one for our Pupuke Kāhui Ako as our community continues to build and extend the momentum established in our first year. Below is a record of some of our highlights.


On Friday March 29, in the WBHS auditorium, around 400 students from our Pupuke community joined together to present an outstanding evening of culture and performance in front of a riveted audience of over 1000 parents, teachers and community leaders. Throughout the night, each of the schools involved took centre stage performing items ranging from Maori waiata and haka to Samoan dance, Zulu folk song, West African Tribal dance, Korean traditional and modern fusion dance and even a South African Gumboot dance. Special thanks and congratulations to Westlake’s Across School Lead, Ritu Sehji, who was instrumental to the organisation and success of the event.

Kāhui Ako Leaders’ Forum with Charles Fadel

Our Lead Principal, Julie Saikkonen, six Across School and one Within School Leader attended the two day Leaders’ Forum organised by our expert partners, Infinity Learn and Charles Fadel on March 6 – 7, 2019. Charles Fadel is a global education thought leader and futurist, author and inventor, with several active affiliations; his work spans the continuum of Schools, Higher Education, and Workforce Development/Lifelong Learning. He is the founder and chairman of the Center for Curriculum Redesign, focused on “Making Education More Relevant” and seeking to answer the question: “[w]hat should students learn for the 21st century?” The forum provided insight, from both an educational and practical perspective, as to the skills, knowledge and competencies we and our children will require to be successful in this rapidly evolving world.

Professional Learning with Jan Hill

On Monday February 18, we had our first professional learning session of the year with Jan Hill. Our Lead Principal, Across School Leaders and some of or Within School Leaders attended the event, which was held in the Forrest Hill School Hall. Jan has an extensive background in teaching and school leadership and is a founding director of The Education Group. Jan’s presentation focused on the nine Leadership Capabilities and a discussion around what they are and what they might look like in practice for our WSL and ASL leaders. Jan also touched on specific skills for leading inquiry, goal setting, observations of practice, listening to encourage thinking and asking powerful questions.

Leadership Coaching

Pupuke Kāhui Ako in association with Growth Coaching New Zealand are offering two three-day rounds of leadership coaching for our ASL, WSL and Senior Leaders in 2019. After receiving final approval from the Ministry, the first day of the first round took place at Takapuna Normal Intermediate on March 25, with the remaining days of each round being spread across the year. The course, titled “Introduction to leadership Coaching” is targeted to build the capability of our leaders in having professional conversations that lead to improved outcomes for teachers and students, across all schools in the Kahui Ako.

Kāhui Ako Professional Learning Opportunities

Week 10 saw the pilot round of across community PLD opportunities. The theme for these workshops being “what really makes a difference to our students at this time of the year”. Melissa Ensoll (WGHS – WSL) and Health Nola (WBHS – WSL) co-presented a session at WGHS on ‘Creating Positive Classroom Climates’. Melissa shared the work she has been doing around character strengths and gratitude, while Heath shared his insights on how to best create a positive learning environment with students, with an emphasis on establishing positive connection with those students who may struggle. At WBHS a second session on  ‘Effective Transitions’ was facilitated by Jihan El-Labany and Jonathon Webster (WBHS – WSLs) and Michelle Cleaver (WGHS – ASL). Jonathon and Jihan shared their vision to extend the opportunity of the Science Experience Days, so successful in 2018, across other curriculum areas. Michelle shared her 3-prong approach to transitions into WGHS for Year 8 students, which includes an across curriculum orientation day, the Peer support programme and the Citizenship award.

The professional learning theme for Term Two is “how can we better engage, inspire and challenge our students in their learning?”

Pupuke Kāhui Ako Board of Trustees Evening

On March 14 in the WGHS staffroom, Board of Trustee members from across the nine schools in our Kāhui Ako, alongside principals, senior leaders, ASLs and WSLs, joined together to talk, strengthen connections and share their experiences from the community. On the night, Julie Saikkonen spoke about the Pupuke journey so far, sharing some of our landmark achievements. Following Julie, members of the ASL team spoke about their leadership journeys in 2018, before offering some insight into the areas that they were intending to investigate and target for this year. The evening was a hugely positive one, representing a significant step forward in our community journey.


 The website continues to evolve with new initiatives and materials being added every day. The first three episode of a podcast on education and teaching called “Inside the Teacher’s Classroom” have been uploaded and are accessible from our blog page now. Conceived and hosted by Across School Lead, David Smale, the series seeks to garner the insights, and celebrate the voices, of teachers, students and other parties in education from around our community and beyond.

What is coming up for our Kāhui Ako in Term Two:
18 February – WSL Day with Jan Hill

6 – 7 March –  Kāhui Ako National Forum with international expert panelist Charles Fadel

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