NICOLA LEETE - MASSEY UNIVERSITY
Kia ora Koutou, Ko Nicola Leete ahau.
I am the national facilitator for the Learning Support Network and a lecturer at Massey University. My professional background is in both law and education and these are the areas I teach and research in. I am particularly interested in inclusive education, disability studies and children’s rights. During my teaching career, I worked for a number of years as a Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator at the secondary school level. My passion for ensuring all ākonga have equitable access to education led me to complete my Master’s in Special and Inclusive Education and my PhD. I teach into the Specialist Teaching and Learning Support qualifications, where I have the privilege of working alongside kaiako from throughout Aotearoa. I look forward to connecting and collaborating with you through the Learning Support Network of expertise.
JO ARNOLD - MASSEY UNIVERSITY
Kia ora koutou, Ko Jo Arnold ahau.
I am a lecturer at Massey University. I have been in education for twenty-five years and have worked as a teacher in numerous schools in New Zealand, Singapore and England. During my career, I was a Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) for fourteen years as well as a Deputy Principal. I have also been a Resource Teacher: Learning and Behaviour (RTLB) for five years where part of my role was to work alongside and support SENCO/ Leaders of Learning Support in my local schools. I have a Masters in Specialist Teaching and I have a passion for inclusion and equity, and for children and young people to have a sense of belonging within their educational setting. I am looking forward to communicating, collaborating and connecting with Learning Support Leaders and SENCO across the country, both online and face to face, through this initiative.
MANDIA MENTIS - MASSEY UNIVERSITY
Kia ora koutou, Ko Mandia Mentis ahau.
I’m an Associate Professor at Massey University, where I coordinate postgraduate programmes in Inclusive Education and Specialist Teaching. I’ve worked as a teacher and educational psychologist in primary, secondary, and tertiary levels across special and inclusive education settings in New Zealand and overseas. I am currently co-director of the Equity through Education Centre, and supervise research into issues of diversity. My interests focus on how new digital technologies are changing the places and spaces where we work and learn and are starting to blur the boundaries between formal and informal learning. Life-long and life-wide learning shape our professional identities and practice, and it is these aspects that excite me in working with the team to design and facilitate this SENCO / SL:LS network of expertise.
WENDY HOLLEY-BOEN - MASSEY UNIVERSITY
Kia ora koutou and a warm welcome to the Network of Expertise.
I work at Massey University, in the Institute of Education and primarily on the Specialist Teaching programme. I have worked as an educational psychologist in the US as well as New Zealand, and have a passion for strengths-based, ecological and relationship-centred approaches to supporting teaching, children and whānau. I’m also very interested in supporting teacher wellbeing, including the ways they bring the personal to the professional and integrate work, life and study. My PhD research explored the professional identity and wellbeing of teachers and developed a framework for supporting their fierce practice through stance, supports and stamina.