Wentworth College & Primary Private School. Gulf Harbour, Auckland, New Zealand. High quality independent education in a positive and caring environment.
Wentworth College & Primary Private School. Gulf Harbour, Auckland, New Zealand. High quality independent education in a positive and caring environment.

Staff at Wentworth


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Bruce Tong

Bruce Tong

Principal

M.Ed. Admin., B.Ed., Dip.Tchg.

btong@wentworth.school.nz
Bruce’s previous appointment was Deputy Principal at Westlake Boys’ High School. He has a wealth of educational experience within both the primary and secondary service including responsibilities for strategic planning, school-wide curriculum development and management of college pastoral care and guidance. Bruce is a keen sportsman and has managed and coached rowing and hockey to a senior level.

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Philip Lee

Philip Lee

Head of College

M.A.(Hons), Dip.Sch.Mgmt., Dip.Tchg.

plee@wentworth.school.nz
Philip joined Wentworth at the end of 2011. Previously he had been a foundation staff member and Assistant Principal at ACG Senior College, and before that taught English and Drama and worked with pastoral care teams in a number of secondary schools in the Waikato and Bay of Plenty. In 2006 Philip was awarded an “Excellence in Teaching Award” and has a particular interest in developing excellence in teaching and learning. For leisure, Philip likes to read, garden, walk his dog or attend music and drama performances.

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Sarah Banyard

Sarah Banyard

Director of School Operations, and
Head of Faculty – Mathematics

B.ED., DIP.TCHG

sbanyard@wentworth.school.nz
Sarah has been teaching Mathematics for more than 34 years. She joined Wentworth as Head of Mathematics in January 2008, having taught for 19 Years at a private boarding school in England (Millfield) and more recently at Westlake Boys High School. Sarah is passionate about her subject and the need for all students to have a good grounding in Mathematics. She and her family enjoy camping, kayaking and travelling.

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Steve Wackrow

Steve Wackrow

Senior Management Support

B.A., T.T.C., Dip.Tchg.

swackrow@wentworth.school.nz
Prior to becoming a foundation staff member and Deputy Principal at Wentworth, Steve was a Faculty Head and member of the Saint Kentigern College Senior Management Team, involved in teaching, curriculum development, teacher appraisal and computers in the curriculum. He piloted the use of computer notebooks for classroom use.

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Primary Staff

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Chris Donovan

Chris Donovan

Head of Primary

B.A., G.DIP.TCHG. (PRIMARY), P.GRAD ED LEAD.

cdonovan@wentworth.school.nz
After 17 years as an international banker, Chris changed career paths to follow his passion for teaching. He joined Wentworth in 2010 as a Year 2 teacher and became Head of Primary soon after. Living locally, Chris is a family man who enjoys fishing and is a keen reader.

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Shelli McLeish

Shelli McLeish

Teacher Year 1

BA (Auckland), GDip Tchg (Primary)

smcleish@wentworth.school.nz
Shelli completed a Bachelor of Arts degree with majors in both Education and Psychology before returning to university to train as a teacher. Shelli enjoys working in the junior school assisting our newest students to build the foundations they need to become life-long learners. Prior to teaching Shelli spent time in the corporate world working with iconic New Zealand and international brands. Shelli loves spending time with her family and enjoys travelling.

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Shona Clark

Shona Clark

Teacher Year 2

B.A., Dip.Tchg.

sclark@wentworth.school.nz
Shona completed a Bachelor of Arts degree majoring in History and English at Massey University before training as a teacher through Victoria University. She loves hearing the funny stories her class tell her and enjoys seeing her students learn and grow throughout the year. Shona enjoys walking her dog, swimming, reading, and spending time with her husband and their two school-aged daughters.

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Teresa King

Teresa King

Teacher Year 3

B.Ed.

tking@wentworth.school.nz
Teresa is an experienced teacher having taught at Matakana and Stanmore Bay Schools. Teresa’s expertise in numeracy lead her to be appointed as a numeracy advisor for the Auckland University’s “Team Solutions” team, advising teachers throughout Rodney. Teresa’s strengths also include Art, Information Technology and accelerated learning strategies.

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Luke Wesbonk

Luke Wesbonk

Teacher Year 4

B.Ed.

lwesbonk@wentworth.school.nz
Luke gained his Bachelor in Teaching (Primary) in 2003 and has worked in various roles within Auckland. In his early days of teaching he ran his own business teaching cartooning within primary schools, before working as a full-time classroom teacher for the next 7 years. Before coming to Wentworth he began studying toward a Diploma in Digital Film so that he could gain the skills to produce videos and short films. As well as film, Luke is interested in music, comedy, and the visual arts.

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Kate Halcrow

Kate Halcrow

Teacher Year 5

B.Ed.

khalcrow@wentworth.school.nz
Kate completed a Bachelor of Education (Primary) degree at Auckland University. She has taught in a variety of schools on the North Shore, South Auckland and most recently in the UK. Kate moved back to New Zealand in April 2017 to teach Year 5 at Wentworth Primary. Her strengths are in English, Mathematics and Art. She enjoys dancing, music (she plays flute and bassoon), and travelling around New Zealand and overseas.

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Christine Sancto

Christine Sancto

Teacher Year 6

L.L.B. (Hons), PGCE, EYPS

csancto@wentworth.school.nz
Christine qualified as a solicitor and worked as a legal researcher and law librarian before retraining as a primary teacher in the early 1990s, She has over twenty years teaching experience and has held a variety of curriculum responsibilities. After a career break to spend time with her children, Christine retrained as an Early Years Professional, working in private nurseries and Children’s Centres to set up quality learning environments for the under-fives. She recently moved to New Zealand with her family and enjoys theatre, reading and exploring the outdoors.

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Kim White

Kim White

Reception / Administration Support

kwhite@wentworth.school.nz
Kim will be first point of contact for many parents at the Reception of Wentworth Primary School. Working from 8:30am to 1pm, Kim is responsible for all administration duties at the Primary School including coordinating new student enrolments. Kim is an avid sportswoman and sports coach in the community. She enjoys coaching Wentworth College Netball teams from Year 7 right through to Senior Premier Level and is actively involved as a co-ordinator for Wentworth Rowing. Kim enjoys Crossfit, Netball & Touch Rugby to keep fit, as well as spending time with her family.

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College Staff

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Sharon Addis

Sharon Addis

Teacher of Global Perspectives

B.SOC.SCI, DIP.TCHG

saddis@wentworth.school.nz
Sharon gained her Bachelor of Social Science at Waikato University in Geography and her Diploma in Teaching at Auckland College of Education. She has taught Social Studies, Geography, Maths, English and P.E. in a variety of settings including New Zealand, India, Northern Ireland and the USA. After working as a Head of Department in 3 different colleges, Sharon took a break from the classroom and joined the staff of World Vision New Zealand as an Education Officer, developing curriculum resources and supporting teachers and students taking social action on global issues. In January 2017 Sharon returned with her husband and two children from 12 years living in the USA. She is enjoying the experience of rediscovering all things ‘Kiwi’.

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Robert Ansell

Robert Ansell

Teacher of Technology

T.T.C., Dip.Tchg.

ransell@wentworth.school.nz
Robert started his working life as a builder before switching to teaching in 1996. After completing his Diploma in Teaching at Auckland Teachers’ Training College, Robert gained a position teaching Technology and Graphics at Westlake Boys’ High School, moving to Wentworth in 2012. A keen sportsman and boatie, fishing is also a priority when time allows.

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Rina Botha

Rina Botha

Years 7 & 8 Dean

Teacher of Mathematics

B.A., HIGHER ED.DIP.

rbotha@wentworth.school.nz

Rina brings with her more than 30 years of teaching experience. She taught at a private school in South Africa and more recently at a school in Albany where she was Assistant Head of the Mathematics Faculty. Rina immigrated to New Zealand at the end of 2012 with her husband and two daughters. In her spare time Rina enjoys exploring New Zealand, tramping, camping, reading and spending time with her family and friends.

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Andrew Brown

Andrew Brown

Head of Faculty – Science; Teacher of Mathematics

B.SC.(HONS), DIP.TCHG

abrown@wentworth.school.nz
Andrew completed a Bachelor of Science degree at Victoria University of Wellington, and was awarded 1st Class Honours. He studied Physics and Chemistry in addition to his major in Mathematics. After graduating, he spent 11 years teaching Physics and Science at Westlake Boys High School, and for several years served as the Head of Department for Physics and later Senior Science. Andrew arrived at Wentworth in 2016, and has enjoyed contributing to both Science and Mathematics departments. Outside of the classroom, his interests include sport, music, and spending time with his wife and young family.

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Nicola Carrigan

Nicola Carrigan

Teacher of Art

DIP.GRAPHIC DES., DIP.TCHG

ncarrigan@wentworth.school.nz
Nicola has an extensive background in commercial design and photography. After 11 years in the UK Nicola and her family moved back to Auckland where she trained as a secondary school Art teacher. She joined Wentworth College after 9 years at Glenfield College as the senior Design and Photography teacher. In her spare time Nicola is very fond of the performing arts, especially dance and musical theatre, and contributes behind the scenes whenever possible.

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Alice Davies

Alice Davies

Head of Faculty – English

M.A.(Hons), Dip.Tchg.

adavies@wentworth.school.nz
After gaining her Masters degree in English Literature, Alice trained as a secondary teacher and taught for a number of years at Kristin School. Alice came to Wentworth from Baradene College where she was Head of English and a member of the Senior Management Team. Her interests include tramping, fishing and reading.

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Amy Fisher

Amy Fisher

Teacher of Science, Chemistry & Marine Science

B.Sc. (Hons), PGCE

afisher@wentworth.school.nz
Amy completed her undergraduate degree in Geology with Oceanography at the University of Southampton and commenced her working life as an Offshore Surveyor for a Dutch company. After two years of life on the high seas she returned to her studies to specialise in Chemistry Education, completing her PGCE at the University of Exeter. Following 3 years teaching in the UK Amy moved over to New Zealand from the South-West of England, joining Wentworth College in 2014. Her hobbies include spending time on and around the water; particularly sailing and exploring the local surroundings.

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Jillian Gamble

Jillian Gamble

Teacher of English, Drama & Psychology

B.A., Dip.Tchg., Dip.Ed., Dip.Hum.

jgamble@wentworth.school.nz
Jillian gained both her BA in English and her Diploma in Teaching at Canterbury University. She has taught in several New Zealand secondary schools including Rangiora in the south and Ruapehu and Rangitahi Colleges in the middle of the North Island. For nine years she was HOD English, first at Orewa College and then at Upper Hutt College. While raising her three children Jillian gained two graduate diplomas: a Diploma of Education in Guidance and a Diploma of Humanities in English.

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Matt Harris

Matt Harris

Head of Faculty – Physical Education & Health, Director of Sport

B.Sc. (Sport & Education), Dip.Tchg.

mharris@wentworth.school.nz
Matt joined Wentworth in 2007 after completing his Bachelor of Sport & Recreation and Teaching Diploma at Auckland University of Technology. He is passionate about sport, and enjoys a range of sports both as a competitor and as a coach. He has lived on the Hibiscus Coast for many years with his wife and two children and loves the surrounding beaches and parks. As Director of Sport, Matt is excited to see students fully involved in the co-curricular programme of the school, both for participation and social benefits, as well as seeing our top teams strive for success in local, regional, and national competitions.

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Joel Hicks

Joel Hicks

Physical Education & Mathematics Teacher

B.PHED., DIP.TCHG.

jhicks@wentworth.school.nz
After completing his Bachelor of Physical Education at Auckland University in 2013, Joel worked at Lynfield College for 4 years before joining Wentworth College. Moving to the Hibiscus Coast in 2017 with his fiance, Joel loves the lifestyle it provides. Joel enjoys providing opportunities for students to develop their physical and social skills through Physical Education. His interests include football, touch rugby and snowboarding.

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Sean Jones

Sean Jones

Teacher of Computer Science

MSc, P.G.C.E.

sjones@wentworth.school.nz
Sean moved to New Zealand in 2012 with his family. In the U.K. he taught Information and Communications Technology, Computer Science and Electronics at both Secondary School and Tertiary College levels. Sean was Assistant Head of the ICT and Business Studies Faculty at a top-performing school in the UK. Prior to teaching, Sean worked in the Electronics industry and he enjoys anything to do with computers and electronics. Sean has three children whom he enjoys spending time with.

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Michelle Jordan

Michelle Jordan

Teacher of English and ESOL

B.A./L.L.B., Grad.Dip.Tchg.

mjordan@wentworth.school.nz
After graduating in South Africa, Michelle practised as a lawyer for ten years. She moved to New Zealand in 2007 and retrained as a teacher. Michelle has a keen interest in finding alternative ways to encourage reading in the digital age. She enjoys reading, playing golf and spending time with her husband and two children.

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Paul Langdon

Paul Langdon

Teacher in Charge of Economics & Business Studies

B.Mgmt.Stud., Dip.Tchg.

plangdon@wentworth.school.nz
After completing a Management Studies degree at Waikato University, Paul spent 7 years in the business world working for high profile businesses such as The Warehouse and Blue Star Office Products, before going back to University to gain his Diploma of Teaching. Paul taught Economics and Accounting for 8 years at schools including Mt Roskill Grammar and Rangitoto College, prior to commencing at Wentworth in 2008. His hobbies include playing golf and squash, and spending quality time with his wife and young children.

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Michael LaPierre

Michael LaPierre

Teacher of Geography and History

B.A.(HONS), DIP.TCHG.

mlapierre@wentworth.school.nz
Michael first worked for the Federal Government in his native Canada for six years before embarking on extensive travel in Africa and Asia. Prior to arriving in New Zealand he taught in Tokyo for seven years and is conversationally fluent in both French and Japanese. After moving to New Zealand he spent a year in Christchurch before moving to Auckland where he spent 8 years teaching Geography and Social Studies at Papatoetoe High School prior to joining the team at Wentworth College. Travel, SUP, Film Noir and music fill any available spare time.

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Anna Pallares

Anna Pallares

Teacher of Spanish & Piano

B. Psych., Dip.Mus., Grad.Dip.Tchg.

apallares@wentworth.school.nz
Anna is from Barcelona and has been living in New Zealand since 1992. She joined the foundation staff at Wentworth at its inception in 2003 and currently teaches Spanish and piano. Anna has wide experience in education having taught in a number of schools in Barcelona and Auckland. She has also worked as an interpreter and as an industrial Psychologist. Anna holds a Diploma in Piano from the Conservatory of Music in Barcelona, as well as a Graduate Diploma in Teaching from Massey University, specialising in languages and music.

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Tunde Palosne Buday

Tunde Palosne Buday

Specialist Language Teacher

M.A., B.Ed.

tpalosnebuday@wentworth.school.nz
Mrs Palosne Buday is a linguist with a Master’s Degree in English Language and Literature. She is passionate about both learning and teaching languages, and speaks German and English fluently, Spanish at intermediate level and, of course, Hungarian which is her native tongue. In the past 16 years she has been teaching English and German in a number of countries in Europe and South America. Shortly after she met her winemaker husband, she relocated to her hometown in Hungary where she has been raising her two sons, teaching at a Lutheran High School, as well as running her own business – a medium-sized language institute. Since moving to New Zealand in 2016 with her family, Mrs Palosne Buday has been helping international students at Wentworth College. She strives to support her international students facing the daily challenges of being at an English-speaking school, and always aims to create a warm and welcoming atmosphere in her classroom.

In her free time, Mrs Palosne Buday loves reading and walking on the beautiful local beaches with her children and friends.

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Sarah Poppe

Sarah Poppe

Teacher of Music

B.MUS., .DIP.TCHG, LTCL (Performance – WITH DISTINCTION)

spoppe@wentworth.school.nz
A seasoned Musical Theatre performer, Sarah has over 20 years of teaching experience where she has been avidly involved in Music Groups, Stage Challenge and Musicals. After working in Private schools for 12 years prior to joining Wentworth, Sarah loves the small classes, enthusiasm, high expectations and discipline found in this environment. A trained violinist and ballerina, Sarah brings enthusiasm to her teaching and loves to create original works with students of all ages. Sarah has also taught singing and songwriting, encouraging students to set goals and to love performing.

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Ngaire Timperley

Ngaire Timperley

Years 9 & 10 Dean

Teacher of Science, Biology & Marine Science

B.Sc., Dip.Tchg.

ntimperley@wentworth.school.nz
Ngaire completed her Bachelor of Science in microbiology and immunology at Otago University, before continuing with a post-graduate Diploma in Teaching at the University of Auckland. Over the last few years, in addition to teaching part-time at Orewa College, Ngaire has been involved in a number of education-related research projects with the University of Auckland. Her main hobby is Aikido, which she teaches at a club in Manly.

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Cathy Worthy

Cathy Worthy

Teacher of Science & Mathematics

B. Tchg. & Lrng.

cworthy@wentworth.school.nz
Cathy completed her teaching degree at Christchurch College of Education. She has also studied Science at Waikato and Massey Universities. Prior to coming to Wentworth she taught at an independent middle school in Nelson for six years. Her interests include tramping, sailing, orienteering, caving and travelling.

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Support Staff

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Gail Clews

Gail Clews

PA / Admin. Manager

gclews@wentworth.school.nz
Gail is often the first point of contact for Wentworth College parents. As well as acting as Admissions Registrar for prospective parents, she also acts as the Principal’s PA and can assist existing parents with many issues around the day to day running of the school. If you’re not sure who to contact, start with Gail and if she can’t assist you directly, she’ll help you identify the right person.

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Dianne Drew

Dianne Drew

Student Support Officer

ddrew@wentworth.school.nz
In her role as Student Support Officer, Dianne is the first point of contact for all Wentworth students, whether it be purchasing stationery, handing in money for school trips, looking for lost property, or needing first aid assistance. Parents should contact Dianne with any queries relating to ‘Sundry’ school fees (stationery, trips, camps etc).

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Jahna Graver

Jahna Graver

Admin. Assistant / Librarian / International Homestay Co-ordinator

jgraver@wentworth.school.nz
Jahna has a multi-tasking role at Wentworth, with part of her time spent working in Reception assisting with administration and accounts duties, where she also looks after the pastoral care of our international students as Homestay Co-ordinator. The rest of her day spent managing the school Library. Jahna has many outdoor interests including snowboarding, wakeboarding and surfing to name a few. With two teenage daughters of her own, Jahna loves conversing with the students and offering them support.

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Caroline Smith

Caroline Smith

Sports Co-ordinator

csmith@wentworth.school.nz
Working in the Sports Department from Tuesdays to Thursdays each week, Caroline is the main point of contact for parents and students participating in school sports. With over 70% of Wentworth students actively participating in sports, Caroline is kept busy co-ordinating team entries, communicating with students, coaches and parents, and laising with the governing bodies of the various sporting codes. An active parent volunteer for her own children’s sports, Caroline is a passionate advocate of the value of sports in students’ lives.

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Rachel Vaudrey

Rachel Vaudrey

International Student Director

rvaudrey@wentworth.school.nz
Rachel is responsible for the enrolment and pastoral care of our international students for both the Primary School and College. Rachel moved to New Zealand from London having enjoyed a 20 year career in Marketing in the UK and now lives on the peninsula with her husband and their three young children all of whom are enjoying their ‘Kiwi’ life. Rachel looks after the international student programme and encourages students from all over the world to come and study in this beautiful part of New Zealand. If you are the parent of an international student, an agent, or a local family interested in providing a caring home for one of our international students, please contact Rachel.

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Wentworth College & Primary

Private Cambridge Education in Gulf Harbour, Auckland, NZ.
High quality independent education
in a positive and caring environment.

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