National Executive Members - 2022

The Professional Learning Association New Zealand Te Māngai Whakangungu Kaiako o Aotearoa (Inc) is led by a national executive. Each year, members are elected to the national executive which consists of a Māori medium committee and an English medium committee with a chair for each committee that become co-chairs of the national executive.

Helen Cooper Helen Cooper

Senior Manager Contracts
English Medium - Committee
CORE Education

Helen is a member of CORE Education’s Senior Leadership Team. She oversees Professional Learning and Development contracts awarded to CORE, Early Years through schooling. Helen supports and guides project teams, providing leadership in design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. She has had a specific focus on Learning with Digital Technologies programmes, and is currently sponsor for the Connected Learning Advisory, Grow Waitaha, centrally funded PLD, Emerging Leaders and Expert Partners.

Helen is committed to fostering collaborative partnerships, building effective trusting relationships between schools, providers and iwi, through developing shared vision and agreed ways of working. Helen has also had a lead role in the design and implementation of Grow Waitaha, working in collaboration with Leadership Lab, Massey University, Evaluation Associates and Mātauraka Mahaanui. As a member of the Operations Management Group for Te Toi Tupu she worked closely with Cognition Education, University of Waikato, NZCER and Waikato Tainui College for Research and Development. Prior to joining CORE in 2011, Helen worked for the National Office of the Ministry of Education as Senior Advisor in the e-Learning Unit and prior that, as Senior Advisors Arts in the Secondary Outcomes Team. Helen has a Masters in Education in Professional Learning.

Charles Rolleston Charles Rolleston

Kaihautū Māori
Evaluation Associates

Anna Sullivan Anna Sullivan

Evaluation Associates

Anna is the Chief Executive at Evaluation Associates | Te Huinga Kākākura Mātauranga. 

With a background in teaching and school leadership, she has worked in the PLD space for many years.  She has been fortunate to have worked with many people in our PLD whānau through the different roles she has held. About a decade ago, she worked in the Ministry of Education national office, managing the school support services contracts and a range of other PLD contracts. From there, she worked for Cognition Education managing their PLD teams and she was also the foundation consortium manager for Te Toi Tupu.  When she moved into her current role, Evaluation Associates was part of the Consortium for Professional Learning with the University of Auckland.  Given this background, collaboration across organisations is a very familiar and welcome space for Anna.  

Mā whero, mā pango, ka oti te mahi.

Tammy Gardiner Tammy Gardiner

Te Arawa, Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Awa, Te Whānau ā Apanui, Whakatōhea
Māori Medium - Committee

Tammy Gardiner is a facilitator supporting the pāngarau provision. Her current research and theory on teaching and student learning continues to influence her professional practice to focus on Māori success as Māori. Tammy’s leadership roles including Special Education Needs Coordinator, Deputy Principal, Acting Principal, and 20 years of experience within the Māori medium education sector have all contributed to her wealth of knowledge in education.

Ngawai Haitana-Tuhoro Ngawai Haitana-Tuhoro

Kaitakawaenga - Facilitator
Institute of Education, Massey University

Michael Richards Michael Richards

Telco Technology Services

I’m a passionate educator who thrives on the challenge of teaching at all levels. I believe in hands-on, inquiry based learning where learners have ownership of their learning and can therefore access education in meaningful, self-driven contexts.

I began my teaching career as an intermediate teacher, enjoying the challenge of extending gifted and talented students. Likewise, I have worked with struggling pre-adolescents as they developed the necessary skills and knowledge to thrive as young adults. From there, I progressively moved down the year levels, teaching years five and six for several years, and then finally teaching years one, two and three. Teaching at the junior end of schooling equipped me with the skills and understanding to teach foundation numeracy and literacy.

Since leaving the classroom, I’ve moved on to develop my adult teaching skills. During this time, I have been heavily involved in developing Ministry of Education funded professional learning programmes for New Zealand schools. This has involved face to face, internal training, and workshopping to develop, refine and improve our offering, thus ensuring value for money and efficacy of delivery.

Lindsey Connor Lindsey Connor

Education Director Asia - Pacific
Cognition Education

Nichole Gully Nichole Gully

Arareo Māori Team Leader & Faciltator
Māori & English
CORE Education

Nichole is a Māori-medium team leader at CORE Education. Before moving to CORE Nichole has worked in Māori-medium education in a variety of roles from early childhood to tertiary. Nichole lectured at the University of Canterbury teaching for over 12 years in te reo Māori and Māori education. She led a number of masters level papers in Hoaka Pounamu: Māori Bilingual and Immersion Teaching specialising in language teaching methodologies and language revitalisation. As well as the educational sector Nichole also has an ongoing commitment to working with whānau, hapū and iwi to regenerate te reo and excellence in educational achievement. She has also been a the National Provision Lead working with the Ministry of Education for Te Reo Māori in Māori-medium. Nichole has also worked in the government and business sectors developing Māori language strategic and culturally responsive practices planning and implementation.

Carolyn Jones Carolyn Jones

Executive Assistant

Carolyn worked in the Faculty of Education, at the University of Waikato for close to 20 years. Over that time her various roles included Administrator, researcher in Early Years Learning, Research Manager for the Faculty and Manager of the Institute of Professional Learning. She left the university in 2019 to pursue other interests. Being offered the part-time role of Executive Assistant for PLANZ in March 2022 has allowed her to work once again with colleagues and organisations with whom she has had long-standing relationships. She appreciates the opportunity to re-engage with the Education sector where the opportunities for growth and learning are challenging and exciting.