School Board

School Board

The Northern Health School Board are appointed by the Minister of Education, rather than elected as in most state schools. The Board functions in the same way as a regular school board with monthly meetings where policy and strategic decisions are made.

Unless otherwise stated, meetings are held at University of Otago House, Level 6, 385 Queen Street, Auckland at 3pm.

Meeting DatesRatified Minutes
18 February 2021February 2021
18 March 2021March 2021
8 April 2021 - Auckland North & WilsonApril 2021
20 May 2021May 2021
17 June 2021 - Auckland SouthJune 2021
July 2021 - No Meeting
18/19 August 2021 - Kaitaia & WhangareiAugust 2021
16 September 2021September 2021
28 October 2021October 2021
18 November 2021November 2021
9 December 2021December 2021
School closes 14 December 2021
Meeting DatesRatified Minutes
17 February 2022February 2022
17 March 2022
April 2022 - No Meeting
19 May 2022
16 June 2022
7 July 2022
18 August 2022
15 September 2022
27 October 2022
17 November 2022
1 December 2022
School closes 9 December 2022

February 2022 School Board Newsletter

Tēnā koutou, e te whānau o Northern Health School

2022 Planning

A warm welcome back to Term 1 2022

We start the year in the Red Covid Protection Framework and as your board, we need to make decisions that make sense for our circumstances and communities, and we know that we can expect the unexpected. We have confidence in our proven ability to respond to the unexpected and continue to support our school community as the reason and focus of all we do.

Whilst planning for the challenges that Covid Omicron brings we also have remained focused on our strategic work and planning. Below is the link to our school Charter document for 2022 showing our key areas and aspiration for our school community both in the longer term and the coming year.

Charter 2022

Curriculum Reporting

There is a clear link showing that adults with baseline literacy skills are more likely to be employed and report good health. Literacy is a doorway to learning across the curricula, supporting progress and achievement in all subject areas. In 2023, the assessment of literacy (and numeracy) at the NCEA level will become more consistent and focused with external common assessment activities replacing the current internal assessment tasks in these areas. Ākonga will be able to undertake the literacy corequisite from year nine and up. This change has implications for all ākonga, especially for those who have had their education interrupted and who may be underachieving.

This year NHS is focusing on understanding how to accelerate student learning in written literacy. We are using the Learning Progression Framework (LPF) to help us to understand what progress looks like in writing (in all subject areas) and how we can best support our ākonga on their journey to becoming literate so that they will be ready to achieve their literacy corequisite from next year.

New Leaders

We have great pleasure in welcoming three new Unit Leaders to Northern Health School this year.  Laura Webster in our Starship Unit, Edward Walker in our Waikato Unit and Vaaiga Ah Mau in our South Auckland Unit.  We look forward to our journey together.

We would like to express our thanks to our outgoing Leaders 2021 – Jan Melbourne, and Estelle Hunter and thank them for their years of service and support to Northern Health School.

The board members

Richard Winder


Richard is currently the principal of the Northern Health School and he has a background in primary education and a Masters degree in Education Administration.

He has a strong interest in learning, pedagogy and building the capacity of teachers. To this end he has presented locally and internationally in the area of education for students with chronic illness. He is currently secretary of HELP, an Australasian association for educators, parents and other professionals working in this area and part of the team responsible for the Continuity in Education Journal.

Martin Smith


Martin is the father of a past Northern Health School student who has benefited considerably from the very high standards of integrated education, care and support provided by the Northern Health School staff.

He has been a School Board Trustee previously, chaired a vocational Training Academy for a number of years, lead the graduate recruitment programme for a consulting company, and been a member of and chaired a national youth organisation, water industry representative association, and private asset owning Boards. As a Civil Engineer and past-General Manager Martin has also worked in the infrastructure utility sector.

Martin is well aware of the fantastically diverse place New Zealand is becoming, and the need to be inclusive and agile. Martin believes this is especially important within Northern Health School so that students and teachers are able to achieve and deliver at education levels tailored to individual development and success. This will allow them to be the very best they can be in their future lives.

Tracy Grieve

Staff Representative

Tracy is the staff representative elected by staff to sit on the School Board.

She has worked at Northern Health School since 2017 in the schools’ regional head office in Auckland looking after IT & assisting in the finance department. Tracy enjoys this varied and interesting role and is honoured to help support our staff, the students and our school community as a staff member and as a Board member.

Prior to working for the Northern Health School, Tracy worked for Auckland Council for ten years in the Harbourmaster’s Office.

Margi Watson

Margi trained as a nurse and worked in both hospital and school settings. She now focuses her work on good governance in both local government and the education sector. Margi has been an elected member at Auckland Council for 9 years with a focus on community, sport and rec, ecological restoration and better open spaces. She sits on other school boards and is also a member of the Portage Licensing Trust.

Agnes Wong

Agnes brings a unique perspective to the board, combining knowledge from public health, community engagement and youth development practices. She has over ten years of experience in both New Zealand and the UK, working with diverse communities, young people and volunteers, all with the underlying purpose of improving people’s health and wellbeing.

Agnes has a strong interest in creating human-centred solutions. With a youth development background centred in the emergency services (fire & ambulance), she is experienced in project and stakeholder engagement, problem solving, leadership and emergency readiness and management.

She is a former member of Auckland Council’s Youth Advisory Panel and Ministry of Youth Development Northern Region Youth Advisory Group. Whilst serving on the Council’s Youth Advisory Panel, in 2014 she founded the Albert-Eden Youth Board.

Currently working in the Health Improvement Team at Auckland Regional Public Health Service, Agnes focuses  on Workplace Wellbeing.  She holds a Bachelor of Health Science, Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, and a Postgraduate Diploma in Business in Health Management from the University of Auckland.

Joanne Walker

Joanne has worked in a variety of roles in schools across New Zealand, including teaching (primary & secondary); itinerant teacher of deaf children; psychologist; lecturer; Professional Learning and Development facilitator (Inclusive Practice, Learning Support); Head of Initial Teacher Education, UNITEC. In addition, she has been Project Director for five specialist teacher education programmes and National Director of the Resource Teachers Learning and Behaviour (RTLB) programme. Her research involves senior leaders, teachers, students and their families across a range of educational settings (urban & rural, early childhood, primary, secondary, special & mainstream schools).

Joanne has a positive and practical inquiry approach, working alongside schools to help them understand the ways in which their current school systems and classroom practices can be strengthened to improve the engagement and achievement of all students, especially those with additional needs.

She is currently working as a critical friend for two Ministry of Education funded Teacher-led Innovation Fund (TLIF) projects and is the schools’ facilitator and researcher for six Auckland schools for the Better Start Literacy Approach project.

Lorraine Taogaga

Tēnā koutou katoa.

He whakatauki tēnei: “Poipoia te kākano, kia puawai” “Nurture the seed and it will blossom.”

Lorraine is a co-opted Māori representative on the Board of Trustees of the Northern Health School.

Lorraine is of Ngātiwhatua ki Kaipara, Te Rarawa, Tainui and Western Samoan descent. She is a registered teacher and has a combined experience in both Primary and Secondary education of twenty-two years. Lorraine has a strong interest in Māori bi-lingual education, inequality in education and critical pedagogy. Decolonisation methodology, Restorative Justice and Indigenous Theology are research interests. The Northern Health School is currently formulating, a Tiriti o Waitangi (Treaty of Waitangi) policy. I am excited to be serving on this Board to participate in its formation.  Lorraine is a professional teaching fellow with positions at Laidlaw College, Te Wānanga Amorangi and Carey Baptist College, Te Whare Oranga, Auckland. She holds a Bachelor of Education and Teaching Diploma. She currently teaches te reo Māori to Education students at Laidlaw College and a compulsory Te Ao Māori paper at Carey Baptist College. A Bachelor of Laws Degree from the University of Auckland and a Master of Theology from Laidlaw College, Auckland.

Asetoa Sam Pilisi

Asetoa Sam Pilisi is a New Zealand born Samoan/Niuean and has worked for over 15 years within the tertiary education sector. Commonly known as Sam, he has worked for several universities in New Zealand and Australia where he has enjoyed mentoring and supporting young people towards university study. Sam has a passion for Pasifika youth and has served in a variety of community organisations.

Sam has recently moved into Health Research after working directly with students in a variety of roles. He is excited about learning more about improving health outcomes for all New Zealanders, with a particular interest in Pacific people here in Aotearoa, across the region and in places that Pacific people reside. Some of Sam’s broad interest areas include, non-communicable diseases (NCDs) prevention and interventions, youth mental health, selfcare and workplace burnout, service within the community and Pacific languages revitalization.