Otatara, a semi-rural residential area with a population of 3,000 residents is situated in a bush and beach area five-ten kilometres west of Invercargill between the New River Estuary and Oreti Beach.   

Otatara Primary School is a U5 contributing state co-educational school with a roll of around 300, 15% of whom are Maori or Pasifika.   The school endeavours to provide a safe, caring, inclusive and stimulating learning environment where all learners achieve success.  Numeracy and literacy are priority areas with the remaining learning areas of the New Zealand Curriculum taught through team rotations and an inquiry based approach. Teachers provide differentiated programmes to support learners to work towards realising their potential.

The school has a total of 14 teaching spaces, plus a library, and is staffed by a team of around 18 teachers, a school secretary, teacher-aides, a librarian/ICT support person, and a part-time caretaker.  The school’s picturesque grounds are surrounded by a native bush reserve and a golf course. A covered heated swimming pool is on-site and adjoining the school site is a large community centre and kindergarten, that the school has a close connection with. The school fosters and maintains a positive partnership with the community, facilities are available to the community out of school hours and are used by various clubs, organisations and families.

This is a large semi-rural school at the heart of the Otatara community...Children's construction projects and art are valued and evident around the school grounds. The high quality outdoor environment provides children with a variety of challenging physical experiences...A well-constructed, coherent curriculum enables children to make connections across all learning areas and reinforce their learning. It is based on providing authentic and relevant contexts for learning which strongly reflect children's interests, strengths and experiences...The school's curriculum and other organisational processes and practices very effectively develop and enact the school's vision, values, goals and targets for equity and excellence.

Children are valued partners in the development of the rich curriculum. They have many opportunities to share their opinions and ideas with teachers and leaders about what works well for their learning. Children are well supported to make informed decisions about their learning and to reflect on and understand themselves as learners.

All children hear and learn about te reo and tikanga Māori. Aspects of te ao Māori are well integrated across all learning areas. Meaningful traditions and practices that demonstrate the value of Māori culture have been developed within the school. The knowledge and expertise of Māori whānau is welcomed and used to enhance bicultural practices.

This school very effectively responds to children whose learning and achievement need acceleration.

Teachers and leaders respond quickly to learners at risk of not achieving well by:

  1. early identification of children who are not making the expected progress

  2. immediate provision of extra, appropriate learning support

  3. closely monitoring children's progress and achievement and making changes to their support as necessary

  4. personalising learning programmes and interventions in the classroom

  5. using assistive technology and e-learning tools to support children's learning

  6. working closely with families and whānau to identify learning goals and appropriate strategies.

Trustees and leaders are strongly focused on ensuring all children succeed. They are committed to exploring and implementing well-researched and innovative strategies and approaches to lifting student achievement and accelerating the progress of children who struggle with learning...Trustees, leaders, teachers, children and families all have a say about what is working well and what might be changed to make things better for children.                  Ero Review 2016


Otatara School, in partnership with its community, provides educational opportunities in a caring environment, which motivate and challenge children.

Connected, self managing learners, striving for excellence

BOARD OF TRUSTEESboard_of_trustees.html
ERO REPORTERO_report.html
COMMUNITY CENTRECommunity_Centre.html
OTATARA SCHOOL HAKAHomepage_files/Otatara%20Haka-%20words%20and%20actions.pdf
ANNUAL REPORTSHomepage_files/Otatara%20School%20Annual%20Report%202020%20.pdf
CHILD PROTECTION POLICYHomepage_files/20220228152439191.pdf