Our strategic plan outlines our ambitions over the coming years.  It also contains information about our school context, and an analysis and commentary about the curriculum goal we set.


“He waotu tahi na rakau.”  Tall bush that stands alone.

When Taupo erupted in 186 AD a hill prevented the ash cloud from destroying an area of bush and it is from this that our area got its name.

Rongowhitiao Arekatera Te Wera a Te Puni, a Waotu Māori chief, believed that education was an opportunity for children in the district so he applied to the Inspector General of Schools to open a native school at Te Waotu.  After site visits, the present location was chosen because of its centrality and also because it had the largest Māori population due to the milling of timber.  In November 1886 Te Waotu Native School opened with a roll of 31 children with all but one being of Māori decent.  Clara Haszard was the first teacher of the school.  The house system of Rongowhitiao, Haszard, Barnett and Simmonds recognises our links to founding members of our community. 

Te Waotu is a school that prides itself on its long history and is part of a landscape with a rich Māori narrative too and strong connections to Ngāti Huri.  Our school is an important part of our rural community and as such we are well supported.  The surrounding area offers plenty-the local agricultural scene is complemented by natural and recreational features such as native bush, the Waikato River trails, Lake Arapuni, Waikato River and Maungatautari.  These unique features all combine to make Te Waotu School a special place.

It is our belief that we need to create children who are future ready.  This means growing children who are active, self-managing, and resilient.  Children who are active in the learning process achieve more and at Te Waotu School we foster this through a commitment towards creating a leanring environment where there are high levels of student agency, where learner dispositions are valued, and teachers foster inclusive and high expectation learning environments.

We cater for students up to Year 8 have a school roll between 110-130 students, employing 5 teachers and additional support staff.  Our school roll includes students of Māori, NZ European/Pakeha, Filipino, European, and Indian ethnicities.  We have a skilled and stable Board of Trustees who take a very proactive role in the governance of our school. 

VISION “What we aspire to”

To be a confident and resilient lifelong learner.

MISSION “How will we achieve this?”

  • Teachers will empower students to be active learners who work in partnership with the teacher.
  • Teachers will ensure students know what they are learning, when they have been successful and where they are going to next.
  • Self and peer assessment is a routine step in the learning process.
  • Success criteria are most effective when great examples of work are used to show what quality looks like.
  • Teachers will use the learning progressions in the curriculum in order to confidently work with a diverse range of students.
  • The school recognises the influence of the home and will endeavour to build and nurture learning focussed partnerships with parents and whanau.

VALUES “We believe in”

Respect, responsibility, honesty, kindness, courage