Teaching Staff

Bernard Butler

Teacher of juniors; Deputy Principal; co-leader of school-wide curriculum development project
  Junior Discovery

Kia ora. I am the Deputy Principal and will be teaching in the Junior Discovery.   I live in Hamilton and enjoy going to the gym, pottering in my garden and experiencing new cultures through my travel experiences.  I have previously taught in primary schools in Auckland and also worked for the University of Auckland and Waikato in the Health and Physical Education learning area. I am looking forward to getting to know all the students across the school this year and having lots of interesting and positive learning experiences together. 

Catherine Lynagh

Teacher of Years 1 and 2

I have been teaching at Te Uku School since 2006, and I love working in such a supportive, challenging and inspiring environment.  I live nearby on a small lifestyle block in Waitetuna, with my two adult children (both former Te Uku students), and our entertaining cats Lily and Archer.  My ongoing project is developing gardens and planting trees around my section.  I'm a big reader and enjoy all sorts of books.  Some of my particular teaching interests are literacy, art and learning through play.  This year I will be working mainly with the youngest children in the Junior Discovery.  I'm looking forward to getting to know all the different personalities in the group and helping the children develop their imagination, creativity and self-belief as learners.  

Bev Turilli

Teacher of seniors: Senior Teacher leading a school-wide 'whanau collaboration' project
  Discovery 3

I have been a teacher at Te Uku School since 2003.  I come all the way from Hamilton every day and love the trip over the divi. I find the staff at Te Uku School extremely supportive and I have loved watching the positive changes happening in our school over the years. I feel that our school is growing in strength from year to year. I love teaching all learning areas but my favourite is definitely Maths. I also enjoy teaching art, writing and reading, and getting my children stuck into some awesome inquiries. I love seeing children excited and engaged in their learning. 

 bevt@teuku.school.nz     07 825 5815 Ext:21

Carol Carlson

Teacher of Years 7 and 8 technology; CRT teacher for both Junior and Senior Discovery groups

I live locally at Waitetuna and have been teaching in different roles at Te Uku school since 2001. I have been responsible for the Year 7/8 technology programme since 2004 as our school offers on site senior technology classes. This year I will be teaching senior technology on Tuesdays and will be in the Junior and Senior discoveries on Mondays and Wednesdays. I love the variation and challenge of my part time role and working across the school with all age groups. I enjoy hands-on learning with all students and I am passionate about creativity and the power of imagination. Art and play based learning are particular interests especially while integrating learning experiences to connect to other areas. All students can imagine possibilities and extend their thinking though design. We learn and create wonderful things together, using paper, ceramic, fabric, wood or whatever is available! 

Please contact me if you have access to suitable materials for our design projects at school. I am always on the lookout for things we can put to good use or sources of items. If you have resources, knowledge or skills to share, I would love to hear from you!

Scott Johnson

Teacher of juniors

Hello Families of Te Uku School, I am pleased to say that I am the new teacher, alongside Bernard Butler, starting in Discovery Two on Monday 25th July.  I come from the sunny town of Whakatane and moved to Hamilton in 2011 to pursue a career in teaching, where I have been living for 5 years.  I absolutely love working with children because of their creativity, enthusiasm and desire to learn at every opportunity. Outside of teaching I am a big sports fan and absolutely love playing music, especially guitar.  I look forward to getting to know all of the students of Te Uku School and begin learning with them. 

Anna Woolston

Teacher of seniors

Kia ora koutou, I live in Hamilton with my husband Grant, our two young sons Alex and Johnny, and a cat named Avenger. In my spare time I enjoy reading a good book, going to the movies or catching up with family and friends. This year I am working alongside Bev Turilli and Lee Clarkson, teaching in the Senior Discovery. I have over 10 years experience in education and I am still passionate about teaching and learning collaboratively with my students. I believe that Te Uku School is an innovative and future focused school, and I look forward to having a role in expanding the senior students hearts and minds this year. 

Pip Mears


Although only new to Te Uku school, I bring with me a wealth of experience in the world of education, having taught both in New Zealand and in the UK. I have also been extensively involved in teacher training programmes at the University of Waikato, as well as a variety of  teacher mentoring and support initiatives. In 2014, I completed my Masters in Educational Leadership, where I focused a large part of my study on looking at a particular passion of mine – how student-teacher relationships influence student achievement at school.  I am looking forward to continuing to implement the school vision of ‘Expanding Hearts and Minds’, as we endeavor to encourage, challenge and inspire students at Te Uku School to be the best versions of themselves, well equipped to make the most of all that the future has to offer them.

Ali Butcher

Teacher of seniors

Year 7 and 8 teacher

Ali has a wealth of teaching experience across a range of age groups, both here in New Zealand and most recently in Australia.  She is experienced in all curriculum areas, holds a Masters of Applied Linguistics, and has a passion and strength for incorporating various aspects of IT in education.

Support Staff

Rachel El Kamraoui

Office Administrator

Hailing from near by Te Mata, where I live on a small lifestyle block with my three children, I have been at Te Uku school since 2013. My interests include theatre and dance, music, travel and my fur babies. 2018 will find me back behind the desk in the office once more.

Basil Turnbull


Jo Wallis

Teacher Aide

Hi I am Jo Wallis. I am supporting learning in both the Junior and Senior Discovery groups, during the mornings on a Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. It is great to see children’s minds growing and developing. I live in Okete and have 2 children here at Te Uku and one at high school.

Merve Yesilkir

Teacher Aide

I am Merve Yesilkir. I am from Turkey, from a little village up in the mountains. I have a degree in Molecular Biology and Genetics. I’ve worked with different research teams around the globe. I came to Raglan, New Zealand a year ago and am currently living on a family farm. I work at Raglan Area School too, as part of the Science Department. I do love surfing and being outdoors. I enjoy being around kids, learning from them and observing their way of interacting with everything. I am happy to be part of the Te Uku School family now.