Name: Margaret Kaa
School: Tuakau School, Waikato

Margaret is definitely an unsung hero in my eyes as well as many others colleagues, students and parents of the school. She is one of those quite humble leaders who will often lead by example and roll her sleeves up whether it is sport, hobbies, teaching and learning but she also has a great ability to be able to delegate so that the strengths of our staff are able to shine through. She wears all the hats for our school community and always does so in a manner that makes one feel listened to and supported, no matter what.

I am inspired to work to my best and give my all under Margaret's leadership because that is what she models for me without expecting any recognition, in fact she always refers to her team when any recognition and praise is put her way - always!


Name: Bridget Clare
School: Hamilton Girl's High School, Hamilton

Bridget has taken over the leadership of a big department in a big secondary school, at short notice, since the HOF went on sick leave. She has shown great work ethic, staying late at school and working nights and weekends to provide planning, exemplars and other help for her colleagues.

Bridget is always calm, fair and ready to listen while also prepared to make final decisions after widespread consultation. She cares about the welfare of staff, students and of the department. Bridget values anything a colleague does and is quick to thank and praise them while being incredibly humble about the huge effort she has put in. She goes out of her way to help and tutor students. All this and coping with pregnancy at the same time, too!

Bridget is such a talented super woman [and beautiful as well] that we should all be envious of her, but she is such a caring, kind and lovely person that we just treasure and love her instead.


Name: Melissa Meyers
School: Waiheke Primary School, Ostend, Waiheke Island

Melissa was a classroom teacher at Waiheke Primary School last year, and this year she has stepped up to be an Assistant Principal, with huge responsibility for the Special Needs department. We have two children with severe needs in wheelchairs, a seriously high number of children on the Autistic and behaviour needs spectrum and two Down Syndrome children.

Melissa has taken a huge in depth leap in her understanding of all these conditions. She has adopted the children and their families and has taken at least seven Teacher Aides, working with these severe needs children, under her wing.

The Teacher Aides have expressed to me that although they are working their socks off, all hours of the day, they have never been happier or "more listened to" than they have been with Melissa.


Name: Geraldine Malgas
School: St Mary's School Avondale, Auckland

Geraldine is a dedicated, committed, hardworking Deputy Principal. She has a profound love of education and seeing her students succeed. Her reputation as an outstanding but humble teacher is widely known in the community. Parents often request for their children to be in Mrs Malgas' class.

Recently, Geraldine has secured $60,000 worth of funding for a bicycle track to be built at our school. The track also comes with 40 bicycles, 100 helmets,  a fully fitted container for the bikes and some professional development for the teachers at our school. The bike track will also be used by our local community after school hours and on the weekends. Geraldine also negotiated funding for our school to have a professional cricket pitch laid on our current sports field.

Through all of the funding applications, negotiations and collaboration with various personnel, Geraldine continued to provide high quality teaching and learning experiences for her students, continued to lead our staff through high quality professional development and all of this was done quietly, humbly and effectively. She is a true hero.


Name: Gary Quarless
School: Goldfields School, Paeroa

Gary goes well above and beyond his role as principal of Goldfields School to ensure the children get the best education and care possible. He has worked extremely hard to create an environment which is appropriate for children with a wide variety of disabilities and encourages staff,whanau and community to be involved in the development of the school.

Gary has supported families through some very difficult times and supports staff to develop their potential. He strives to achieve the goals he sets and is a natural leader in the education sector.

As a parent rep on the BOT I have witnessed many occasions when Gary has been deserving of recognition of the amazing work he does in our school.