Cluster 8 RTLB
Cluster 8 RTLB are grouped into 3 office bases or hubs. The RTLBs in each office base are responsible for providing service to designated schools.
The three bases are:
Royal Oak Primary School
Roseanne has a commitment to the holistic wellbeing and learning of all and sets the positive, preventative and proactive approach and foundation for the team and cluster. Roseanne uses an inclusive strength-based approach open to opportunities and possibilities to support all ‘to be at their best’. Roseanne focusses on ensuring an accessible infrastructure and ecosystem is in place and strengthening the capacity of the system and individuals to empower and reach all. BA (Psych and Ed), B Ed (Hons), PG Dip SNRT, PG Dip Ed Psych, M Ed Studies (Ed Psych), M Counselling (Psych). Registered Psychologist.
Tēnā koutou. Ko Ōngaro te maunga. Ko Rotohākahi te awa. Ko Whangape te moana. Ko Te Aupouri - Te Rarawa , Te Uri o Tai - ki te taha ō tōku matua tūpuna, erangi, ki te taha ō tōku māreikura, ko Ngare Hauata, Ko Te Hikutu ōku hapu, Ko Chris Graham ahau.
Chris has spent a good deal of his life serving in education, from early childhood all the way to tertiary level. It includes working with tamariki/mokopuna, educators, parents/caregivers, whānau and communities in urban and rural contexts. He has also trained in the Dramatic Arts and has worked in all aspects of theatre, television and film. He continues to participate in the Arts, when he can, while leaving plenty of time to pursue his other loves that include carving, surfing, motorcycles, all sports and food. But it is, te ao māori and whānau where his heart lies and Chris credits his Grandparents for instilling such values as aroha, manaakitanga, tika and pono.
Barbara has worked in education for over 20 years across Primary, Intermediate, Secondary and Tertiary environments in roles as a Teacher, Deputy Principal, Principal, Lecturer and as an RTLB. Barbara is a registered psychologist and has worked as a Practice Leader for Ngā Manu Āwhina Cluster 8 RTLB for the last five years. She is particularly interested in strength focused assessment practices, professional supervision and appraisal. Barbara is a trained Cognitive Behaviour and Dialectical Behaviour Therapist. She has completed the Glasser Advanced training in Choice Theory, Reality Therapy and Lead Management. She also holds a number of internationally accredited qualifications in Growth Coaching, Change Management and Project Management.
BEd Tchg; MEd; MEdPsych; PGDipEdPsych
Psychological Practice, Supervision and Assessment Lead Practitioner
Practice Leader Induction and Tech
Emily is an experienced classroom teacher who joined Cluster 8 RTLB in 2019. Emily has taught in Years 0 – 6 over 20 years and worked in various learning and leadership roles including, Reading Recovery, development of student inquiry, supporting transition to school, team leadership and SENCO. In working with the RTLB team Emily continues her work in supporting students, families and schools to feel empowered and confident to manage learning and behaviour.
Jean is our specialist counsellor. During a career of over 30 years in teaching and GLU – RTLB work Jean trained in Reality and Narrative Therapy. An undergraduate degree in Social Sciences (Human Services) led to a Masters in Art Therapy at UWS University of Western Sydney 2003-4. She currently holds full professional membership of ANZACATA (Australia New Zealand & Asian Creative Arts Therapies Association); www.anzacata.org, is associated with STANZA (Sandplay Therapists of NZ & Australia) www.stanza.asn.au, and is certified as a Sandplay Therapist with ISST (International Society of Sandplay Therapists); www.isst-society.com Jean’s contribution to the work of the RTLBs in Cluster 8 now includes supporting teachers, parents and children to understand behavioural and learning challenges. Combining creative modalities in therapeutic counselling can deepen cognitive processing. Jean holds teacher registration. Supervision is ongoing and verifiable. She offers children, teens, their families and adults: • Solution focussed counselling through Reality Therapy (William Glasser) • If appropriate, longer term psychotherapy through Sandplay and Art Therapy • Short term EAP counselling with Choice Theory / Reality Therapy / Quality Management MAAT; B Soc.Sci (HS); H Dip. Tching; Dip.STN Registered Art Therapist (ANZATA) Certified Sandplay Therapist (ISST) Registered Teacher (NZ).
Titania is an educational practitioner who engages in generative and creative partnership with schools to support learners in the community to achieve their educational aims and potential. She has worked in education for over 25 years across early childhood, primary, secondary and residential settings in a variety of roles as a parent-educator, teacher, senior leader, RTLB and psychologist. Her key strengths include: * people centred assessment and collaborative construction of learning pathways that support individual, group and communities of learners *Inter-weaving of PB4L, UBRS, brain research, resiliency building and growth mind-set approaches to impact positively on student well-being *Responsive systems design to streamline support services. *Innovative projects that build capacity, collaboration and connection within learning communities in an area of focus.
BA Psych; GDip Tchng; PGdip Specialist Teaching; MEdevPsych; PGDipEdevPsych. Registered Psychologist, FIE Basic Level 1 & 2 Facilitator, Brick by Brick Facilitator
Royal Oak Hub
Ko Whakarongorua te maunga
Ko Utakura te awa
Ko Hokianga te moana
Ko Ngatokimatawhaorua te waka
Ko Mataitaua te marae
Ko Ngati Toro te hapu
Ko Ngapuhi te iwi.
I te taha o toku whaea, nō Wera ahau
Ko Sarah toku ingoa.
Sarah is a primary trained teacher and has spent most of her career in South Auckland schools, teaching year 0 to 8. She is trained in Reading Recovery and has an interest in support Māori achievement.
More recently she has come from a mentoring role supporting teachers to implement a model of ambitious, equitable and culturally responsive mathematics teaching (DMIC).
She is passionate about developing and sustaining safe, equitable, nurturing and responsive learning spaces for all tamariki.
Sarah is also a māmā to two wonderfully energetic young children and married to Reuben. As a whānau they are currently on a learning pathway reclaiming reo and whakapapa
Tēnā koutou Katoa. Ko Pirongia tōku maunga. Ko Waikato tōku awa, Ko Frederickson tōku waka. No Yorkshire, Nō Oslo, Nō Adare, Nō Inverness, hoki i te taha o tōku mama. Ko Wendy ahau.
Wendy has been an RTLB since 1999 working across West Auckland kura. Prior to that her mahi has been in primary, full primary, intermediate and special schools in West and East Auckland; as a teacher, SENCO, senior teacher, and assistant principal.
The Incredible Years programme has been an integral part of her practice. She is an accredited IYT facilitator and recently trained in IYA and as a Peer Coach. A core value of IY is the place of whanaungatanga; this is fundamental to her work as an RTLB. One of the great joys of being an RTLB has been the relationships with whanau and teachers that have supported our children to flourish.
BA (Psychology, Education, English), PG Dip SNRT, SPELD Certificate Course in SLD (Level 5), NZCER Level C Test User Registration, Pearson Level B Test User.
Leslie is an enthusiastic creative teacher who brings 13 years of Primary classroom teaching experience to the job. She is committed to students and improving their learning skills as well as attitudes towards learning using creative approaches to assist learners. Leslie is experienced with the ALL program and inquiry-based learning. She is passionate about literacy and has training in Reading Recovery. Originally from Canada, she also trained as an Early Childhood Educator before coming to New Zealand to pursue Primary Teaching.
Owen Robyns is an experienced Deputy Principal and SENCO with 30 years experience in education both in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. For the last 13 years he has worked as a Deputy Principal in West Auckland and has undertaken a wide variety of roles in both the junior and senior areas. Owen has a strong interest in working with tamariki, whānau and kura to establish pathways to success in learning and behaviour. He enjoys working with a wide range of professionals coordinating and implementing cohesive strategies leading to positive outcomes.
Maree was previously a classroom teacher and a Supplementary Learning Support Teacher before becoming a Resource Teacher of Learning and Behaviour. Her passion and focus for the last nineteen years has been in supporting children who have special learning needs to achieve their potential. She has been the co-lead for the High Learning Needs and In class Support moderation. Maree works with teachers, paraprofessionals and outside agencies to assist students at all levels of school.
Sarah has worked as an RTLB for 10 years in Auckland and Tauranga. Before this she was a classroom teacher for 30 years. She has a robust understanding of mokopuna, the education sector and the New Zealand Curriculum. Sarah builds genuine collaborative partnerships with mokopuna, whānau, schools and agencies to tautoko an inclusive approach for all learners. Sarah's passion is in promoting good mental health and wellbeing. She has trained in numerous social and emotional programmes and believes that the school setting is an ideal opportunity to support student’s development into self-regulated, empathetic and emotionally healthy adults. Sarah loves learning and enjoys spending quality time with her whānau.
Tēnā koutou. Ko Maungakiekie tōku maunga. Ko Manukau Awa tōku awa. No Onehunga ahau. Ko Caryl tōku mama, ko Wayne tōku papa. Ko Carmilo tōku tane. Ko Samantha a Allegra tōku tamariki. Ko Manuyag a Freeman tōku whānau. Ko Maryanne tōku ingoa.
Maryanne has been working in the education field for 18 years, covering years 0 to 8 during this time. This breadth of teaching has given her a good grasp of all levels of the New Zealand Curriculum, which she has enjoyed adapting to make authentic and exciting for her ākonga. One of her favourite parts of teaching is the genuine relationships that can be created with ākonga, whānau, kura and all agencies. Maryanne has recently completed her dissertation looking into the wellbeing of teachers and is passionate about using this learning to help everyone find joy in their everyday normal. She is Reading Recovery trained with qualifications in Guidance Education (counselling). In her own time, Maryanne enjoys trying new foods, and exploring waterholes with her whānau around Aotearoa.
Tēnā koutou katoa. Ko Hautere te maunga. Ko Oraka te awa. Ko Ngāti Raukawa te iwi. Ko Ngāti Ahuru te hapū. Ko Ngatira te marae. No Putāruru ahau. Ko Tracey Richardson toku ingoa. Tracey Richardson has been an educator for over 30 years. She has taught in both Primary and Intermediate Schools in NZ and the UK. Her varied career has seen her work as a team leader, curriculum advisor and Deputy Principal. Tracey’s background as a curriculum advisor established a strong working knowledge of the NZC which is invaluable when mentoring others to create inclusive, innovative learning programmes. Tracey has an extensive background in health education and a passion for student wellbeing. In 2023 Tracey became a member of the RTLB Professional Learning Network and is currently exploring trauma-informed practice.
Jill Watson brings over 20 years’ classroom teaching experience in Years 0 to 8 to her role as an RTLB. During this time, she has held positions on leadership teams and in school-wide literacy and syndicate leadership. As an RTLB, Jill is passionate about supporting children and teachers through her case and project work. She continues to develop her expertise in literacy and has co-written a foundation skills programme Ready Steady. Jill holds a position on the Cluster 8 Well-being team and is a big believer in the importance of both staff and children’s well-being. Jill has a Diploma of Teaching and Bachelor of Education from Waikato University alongside a Post Graduate Diploma in Inclusive Education from Massey University. In her spare time, Jill can be found enjoying time with her son, husband and friends in the outdoors or swimming kilometres.
With 25+ years’ experience as a teacher and SENCO, and even a stint as a Special Education Advisor with the MOE, Julie brings to the RTLB role a passion for supporting students so that every young person has opportunity to not only survive, but thrive during their school experience. She recognises and values the uniqueness of students, and is passionate about collaboratively generating solutions and effective, positive pathways for students, their teachers and whanau. Julie loves working with students who process the world differently and her strengths include Universal Design for Learning, specific learning difficulties, assistive tech, practitioner inquiry, contemporary leadership, change management, supporting students with anxiety, executive functioning difficulties, autism spectrum, challenging behaviours, and gifted and talented students. Julie is currently completing further study alongside her practice.
Dip Tchng, B.Ed, Post Grad Cert (G&T), Post Grad Dip Ed.
Before joining Ngā Manu Āwhina, Kylah taught at schools in Central and South Auckland, as well as for the Northern Health School. Having taught students from year 0 to 13, Kylah has an excellent understanding of the curriculum for all year levels and is able to utilise this to support others. Kylah is particularly interested in working with ākonga with diverse health and educational needs, raising student achievement for Māori and self-directed learning. She has a special interest in student wellbeing, focussing on using a holistic, student-centred approach to work collaboratively with others to awhi ākonga through their learning journey.
Kia ora koutou. Ko Māhūhū ki Te Rangi tōku waka. Ko Tokotoko te Maunga. Ko Kaipara tōku Moana. Ko Ngāti Whātua tōku iwi. Ko Te Uri o Hau tōku hapū. Ko Kiri Hipi tōku mārae. No Arapaoa, no Kaipara ahau. Ko RTLB taku mahi. Ko Michael White taku ingoa. Michael has strengths in mentoring secondary students, and supporting students with mathematics.
Dianne is a Primary-trained teacher with a passion for assessment for learning and student agency. She has been an RTLB since 2016, with Cluster 8. She values strength-based approaches, and building teachers’ and learners’ self-efficacy. Her teaching strengths lie in early literacy and mathematics, and oral language development - some of her broader project work is in these areas. She enjoys jaunts out of Auckland, singing, walking and socialising with friends, old and new.
Chris is an RTLB, working mainly in the Tamaki Hub, Auckland. Her strengths and knowledge are working with children who are identified under the ‘Vulnerable Children’s Act’. She works closely with agencies that support these children as well as with whānau and schools. Her role is to ensure access to educational supports for these students, in order to reduce barriers to education. She leads the ‘Gateway’ process for Cluster 8. Her passion is working with Māori, Pacific Island students and their whānau as well as those students who are struggling with disadvantage. She is part of the cultural team in her cluster and provides professional development to strengthen collaboration and understanding.
Tēnā Koutou, Ko Maungataniwha tōku maunga, Ko Mamaru tōku waka, Ko Ngāti Kahu raua ko Ingarihi ōku iwi, No Kaitaia āu, Ko David tōku ingoa.
David has worked for 25 years in education as a teacher in NZ and the UK and currently as an RTLB since 2013.
David’s passion is helping learners strive to be their best. His interests include behaviour management, models of cognitive development and culturally responsive practice. He has recently completed a Master of Educational & Developmental Psychology.
David enjoys spending time with his family and outdoor pursuits such as fishing, camping and triathlon.
Jo is the Go To Person for Behaviour in Cluster 8. She is passionate about helping students and the adults who support them, to understand and teach the skills/strategies of self- management, executive function, emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills. Challenging behaviour poses many dilemmas and can cause varying levels of anxiety in schools. Jo has experience and training in delivering Incredible Years for Teachers, UBRS (Understanding Behaviour Responding Safely), SWPB4L, Safe Crisis Management and MAPA. Another passion is the application of the growing body of knowledge of neuroscience to learning and behaviour. This is an exciting area she is curious to research and apply to RTLB work.
Robert has 20 years of experience in Education both in the Primary and Intermediate levels. He is a Pasifika RTLB with a Samoan background and currently co-leads our Culturally Responsive RTLB Pasifika team. He enjoys working with our fanau and their tamariki providing them with the best service possible to achieve their potential. He runs the Learning Through Adventure programme with another RTLB, providing the opportunity for tamariki to problem-solve in adventures and culturally responsive activities. He is committed to building positive learning environments based on students’ strengths, culture and background. He consistently focuses on collaboration with fanau, establishing respectful relationships and making them feel included and supported. He is able to communicate and interpret in the Samoan language when needed.
Lil Reynecke is experienced in the Early Years to the Secondary Years including Adult education. Her particular interest is in holistic wellbeing for students and teachers including behaviour and anxiety with mentoring and coaching. Her passion is in providing practical tools to empower all involved for sustainable outcomes. To achieve this goal, she is an Incredible Years for Teachers facilitator, accredited Resilience Doughnut Framework facilitator as well as trained in the culturally appropriate Mana Enhancement. She has Level 1 Basic Feurestein accreditation for metacognition development and is passionate about supporting Universal Design for Learning for inclusion. Her knowledge of the Early Years curriculum, Te Whariki, provides invaluable support for foundation work and learning through play in all areas of the curriculum including a passion for Numeracy. Her capacity to come alongside schools and teachers to provide timely support, provides a calm and positive environment for success for all.
Georgia has been an RTLB since its inception in 1999. She brings to her work a wide range of skills and expertise including specialisation and accreditation in delivering IYT, Restorative Practice, BAS, Feuerstein, and Glasser. She is passionate about helping special needs learners accessing support and resources and feels affinity with parents and caregivers who are attempting to navigate educational and health services for their children.
Michele has over 20 years teaching experience as both a classroom teacher and in a specialist role. With a passion for learning support, she has previously worked as a RTLB, Outreach Teacher to support students with complex needs in mainstream schools and more recently as SENCO in a large Auckland School. Her passion and experience include working with students with ASD, ADHD and other specific learning disabilities. She is a SPELD NZ teacher, having completed the Level 5 NZQA – approved Certificate Course in Specific Learning Disabilities in 2018. Michele is experienced in creating individual profiles of cognitive and educational achievement strengths and weaknesses for her students to create individual teaching plans to target students’ needs and strengths. She is skilled in using multisensory approaches, use of Assistive Technology and strengths-based model. Michele is also a trained parent facilitator with the Parenting Place. Her other passions include wellbeing and anxiety, with an interest in Cognitive behaviour therapy techniques. Michele thrives working collaboratively and has experience working in multi-disciplinary settings supporting schools and families to provide positive outcomes for students. In her spare time, she enjoys travelling and spending time with her two beautiful children.
Cecilia is a primary-trained teacher whose journey began in South Auckland. She values whakawhanaunga - putting relationships with whānau, kaiako and mokopuna at the forefront of all she does. Her strengths include using strengths-based practices to ensure that the students’ cultural capital and knowledge are an asset to them. Cecilia has a heart for mokopuna whose achievement in learning and behaviour is not being fully realised. Her passion is to create barrier-free access to education for all learners, by building inclusive practice capabilities for teachers and schools.
Irene is an experienced teacher of over 20 years who has also worked in more specialised roles such as RTLB and Learning Support Coordinator. Throughout her teaching and leading positions, she has worked hard to develop inclusive practice and growth mindset, with the aim to ensure all ākonga are given opportunities to realise their full capacity. Irene understands that for an individual to succeed, they need to be provided a means by which they can remain authentic to themselves, their culture, and their learning style. Emotional-regulation and neuroplasticity are some of the key concepts included in her mahi in order to foster voice, agency and corresponding empowerment. To make this happen, Irene thoroughly enjoys investing in relationships, making connections, and collaborating with ākonga, whānau and the wider community.
Jennie has worked in education for more than 20 years, initially in the UK, and then across primary and intermediate schools in West Auckland, as a teacher, team leader, literacy leader and RTLB. She is passionate about developing and promoting effective oral language skills as an intrinsic part of classroom teaching and learning, and in 2014 she completed the Graduate Diploma in Teaching English in School to Speakers of Other Languages (TESSOL). Jennie promotes collaborative, interactive and culturally responsive approaches which support all children’s engagement and learning across the curriculum, and which enrich children’s interactions and connections with each other.
Jennie really enjoys working with children and their whānau, and alongside teachers and school staff to create an engaging, interactive, and inclusive space where all children can experience success.
Michelle Grey-Lamont started her teaching career in 2004. She has worked with a range of special educational needs both her and abroad. Michelle’s passion for neurodiversity led her to RTLB work. She believes there is no one rule for all, and it takes an eclectic mix of methodologies to meet the needs of the diverse learners in today’s classrooms and considers that working collaboratively as a team with colleagues is invaluable to expand the learning for all. Michelle is particularly interested in proactive and preventative approaches to wellbeing for our young people building resilience. Her other interests include: her two beautiful children and hubby, the arts, food, fitness, socialising and travel.
Sandiyao Sebestian (Sandi) is an RTLB with Cluster 8, Auckland. He joined the RTLB service in July 2010. Prior to being an RTLB, He was with the Ministry of Education Special Education as a Special Education Adviser based in Hamilton. His academic background is in special education and educational psychology. Since July 2014 he has been attending numerous workshops locally and internationally in the Feuerstein Instrumental Enrichment Programme. He is now a practitioner in the Basic and Standard programme. He is also a certified LPAD assessor. Since July 2018 he has become Feuerstein Basic programme Trainer and has conducted several workshops in New Zealand. His vision is to continue serving children/with special educational needs proficiently and efficiently. Ever since he left secondary school he has been working for children with diverse needs in different roles (nurse, teacher, head teacher, education director, lecturer). He continues to grow exploring and providing the best practice in the field. His current commitment and study is in helping children to realise their maximum potentials, lead a significant life and be productive.