Tracey Simeon, Principal at Tautoro School, talks about how the primary schools and high schools in their cluster work together and the importance of doing so. “I think that’s probably the strong point of a cluster, is that we get away from thinking that this is my school, I own my students.”
Tracey: So our cluster consists of eight schools and the principals meet together and we set the achievement goals, which was to improve the writing grades of all students in our cluster.
Lee: We now have two colleges in our cluster, which is great for them and we’ve got other schools, so Paihia and Kawakawa School feed into Bay of Islands College so that’s been great for them, and the other schools can feed into Northland College.
Tracey: The school where our year 8’s are going, the principal has asked me, come and have a look at what I’m doing. And like that would never have happened without clusters. Even though we are principals of this cluster, we are principals of a wider community and we need to think that way so that, especially in our community, our students continue their learning not just in our primary schools but in our high schools. I think that’s probably the strong point of a cluster, is that we get away from thinking that this is my school, I own my students. We actually have to think about what is best for our community. And that’s the strength of a cluster.