Meet the Staff
Mark Harris - Principal

Kia Orana and welcome to Apii Te Uki Ou.
Our School is a place where people are our greatest asset. I feel very privileged to be able to be part of such a fantastic community that all do their best to help our kids get the best education possible. I am an educator that believes high expectations and strong values enable our learners to excel in all areas of their learning. My family also are part of our school. Our youngest two children attend Apii Te Uki Ou and my wife Shannon is the Release Teacher. Our doors are always open, so come to say hi and meet our extended family to see what Apii Te Uki Ou offers.
Meitaki Ma’ata e Kia Manuia

Camilla Brotherton (Deputy Principal) - Kotuku Yr 3/4

Kia Orana, my name is Aunty Cam and I have moved to be a part of the Apii Te Uki Ou family this year with my sons Ruben and Reed and my husband Tristan. We left Waiheke Island, New Zealand to live and work in Rarotonga and we are enjoying learning about Cook Island culture and exploring the island and many of it’s sporting clubs and activities. Earlier this year I completed my Masters of Education, specializing in Global Studies in Education and I am enjoying being able to share my new knowledge at Te Uki Ou School. I feel very lucky that I am the teacher in Kotuku because I get to spend my days with some amazing children.

Kim Noovao (Assistant Principal) - Kakaia Yr 7/8

Kia-Orana, I am Mrs Noovao. Teacher of Kakaia, Mum to two girls, Taylah and Alice and wife to Tangata. We moved here from Auckland, and love the island life. We feel very privileged to be part of the Apii Te Uki Ou community. I have been teaching for ten years in a variety of schools. I design learning to ensure it is social, engaging and caters for individual learning needs. I continually explore practices to ensure the success for all learners. Some of my strengths include communication, literacy, ICT and Inquiry learning. Our door is always open in Kakaia, be sure to come and say hi.

Charlee Lowe - PreSchool Head Teacher

Kia Orana, everyone! My name is Charlee Lowe. I’m a Cook Islander, I spent most of my life in New Zealand and some time in Aussie but the Island has called me home. I feel so blessed working and living in Rarotonga with family and culture! I’ve had 11 years worth of fun, laughter, craft and adventure working with young people. This year I am teaching in Preschool (where all the fun happens!) and I’m excited for an awesome year ahead exploring, creating and growing!

Saireni Pekepo-Poila - Culture and Te Reo

Tangi Ke, Tangi Ke, Tangi Ke rava, ua matau ua tatou. Kia Orana i te aroa ngao o to tatou Atu ia Iesu Mesia. My name is Sareni Pekepo-Poila, married to Noo Poila of Mangaia with six beautiful children. I was born and raised here in Rarotonga by my grandparents, Mr & Mrs Turara Pekepo of Titikaveka. We have our two youngest children and grandchild attending Apii Te Uki Ou. In 1999, I started my journey here at Apii Te Uki Ou as a preschool teacher. Nineteen years, of experience in ECE and it is now a privilege to wear a new hat in the school as the Te Reo and Cultural teacher, in place of Maine Potoru. I will do my best, in whatever ways I can, to teach and share the love of my Cook Islands Culture. Meitaki Ngao, te Atua te aroa.

Janet Koschir - Learning Support Coordinator

Ki orana kotou katotoa, Ko Kopurakau Kaienua toku papa ru’au, e te tangata o Mitiaro, Ko Ta’ei Mana toku mama ru’au, no Rakahanga/Manihiki mai aia, Ko Ta’ei Poko toku metua vaine, Ko Clifford toku metua tane
Ko Janet toku ingoa
Kia Orana
What a blessing it is to have finally arrived home. I have been teaching for the past 13 years with the last 5 as Resource Teacher of Learning and Behaviour supporting students with special education needs. I look forward to what this year will bring and am excited about being part of the Apii Te Uki Ou community.

Iantha Mutu - Kota'a Class Teacher Yr 7/8

Kota’a Year 7/8

Tēnā koutou e ngā whānau katoa o tō tātou nei kura, arā, ko Apii Te Uki Ou.
My name is Iantha Mutu and I am of Ngāpuhi descent.
I feel very grateful for the opportunity to teach our wonderfully gifted and talented children here at Te Uki Ou. Our classroom door is always open to everyone.

Aere mai ki Kota’a.

Barbara Moore - Kopeka Class Teacher Yr 5/6

Kia Orana, my name is Barbara Moore and I am privileged to be teaching Kopeka this year. I come from New Zealand and was brought up in rural Canterbury. I have taught and been a teaching principal in a range of schools from South Canterbury, Otago and the Chatham Islands. I have one grown up daughter who is also a teacher. My teaching strengths are in Maths, Literacy, Science and Social Studies. In my spare time, I like to get out on my bike, swim and my creative passion is fabric art in the forms of tie-dying, batik and quilting. I am enjoying the new and varied experiences of teaching in Rarotonga. My door is always open and I look forward to meeting you.

Frances Brown - Kuramo'o Class Teacher Yr 5/6

Kia orana, I am a New Zealander and have been teaching for the last 7 years, 5 and a half of them at a school in Hamilton, New Zealand. During my teaching I’ve experienced teaching across the board and had some time teaching overseas. I love experiencing new places and people. As such, I feel very lucky to have this amazing opportunity to teach and be apart of the Rarotongan community. Having grown up in the Solomon Islands, there are many aspects that remind me of home. I look forward to getting to know the school and the anau that are apart of it.

Zac Moran - Kukupa Class Teacher Yr 3/4

Kia Orana my name is Zac Moran and I’m from Waikato, New Zealand. This is my first year here at Apii Te Uki Ou and living here in the Cook Islands. I’m really excited to teach here at such an amazing school amongst such awesome kids and staff. For the last 4 years, I’ve been teaching in Auckland with kids who predominantly have come from the Pacific islands. I believe that all learning must be engaging, interesting, and relevant. I am passionate about seeing all children succeed at school, and develop a love of learning. My strengths are in literacy, ICT and sport. I’m really excited to get to know everyone from the Apii Te Uki Ou community, so please come and say hi.

Ruth Macquarie - Kakerori Class Teacher Yr 1/2

Rarotonga has always been one of my favourite places to visit. Firstly, because it is so beautiful and relaxing and secondly as I have family here. When the opportunity arose to teach in Rarotonga I lept at the chance and have loved every step of my new adventure.
Teaching is a long-term passion of mine and I have not only taught in the classroom but I have been a music teacher and also a computer trainer. It is exciting to be able to bring all of these skills together in the classroom. I know my time at Apii Te Uki Ou will be filled with laughter and joy and I treasure the opportunity I have been given to work alongside your lovely children.

Donna Watson - Kuriri Class Teacher Yr 0/1

Kia Orana, I am Donna Watson and have come from Ashburton in New Zealand to teach at Apii Te Uki Ou. With me are my husband Craig, and two of our children – Joelle 13, and Maddy 16. We have two older children working back in New Zealand. I have taught for over 20 years and absolutely love working with children. I like to create a fun and inviting environment for my learners and families. I see teaching as a rewarding career where I guide and assist children in making learning connections. I am passionate about teaching all aspects of the curriculum, in particular, literacy, IT and inquiry studies. I am keen to learn Cook Island Te Reo. We can’t wait to become part of this very welcoming community. Meitaki Maata, Donna

Natasha Maoate-Tafa - ECE Teacher

Kia Orana kotou Katoatoa,
I am a part of the awesome preschool family Kura!
I am a NZ born fruit salad and I have been teaching for the last 6 years in Auckland. Early childhood education has been a passion of mine since high school and I am so happy to be back in Rarotonga to give back to our people.
This year I look forward to sharing my passion with Apii Te Uki Ou staff, tamariki and community. It is such a blessing to be here and embrace our beautiful language and culture through a fun and positive learning environment! So let’s take this journey together!
Meitaki Ma’ata
Aunty Tash

Shannon Harris: Release Teacher

Kia Orana, my name is Shannon Harris. I feel extremely fortunate to be a part of the Te Uki Ou team. I shifted to Rarotonga at the start of 2017 with my husband Mark (Principal) and our boys Jaia and Jasper. We come from Gisborne, New Zealand and have a love of the outdoors. We are loving the Cook Island lifestyle, climate and friendly people.
I am the Release Teacher this year and will endeavour to provide students with the support they need to help them reach their learning goals. I am passionate about ICT, the Arts, Inquiry, Environmental Education and strongly promote inclusive learning environments.

Tina Mitchell - Office Manager

Kia Orana, my name is Tina Mitchell and I am so excited and passionate to be working in the office at Apii Te Uki Ou. It is a privilege to be working at the school, where I have the pleasure of meeting everyone, seeing the amazing children every day, and working with some great people. My number one passion is being a mother to three beautiful girls and for many years outrigger canoeing, Cook Islands dancing and singing. This will be my fourth year to be working at the school. Looking forward to your support!
Kia Manuia

Tata Potoru - Teacher's Aide

Kia Orana my name is Tangata Potoru but most people at Te Uki Ou know me as Aunty Tata.
I am the older, smarter and better looking sister of Teiaa Potoru…but she thinks it is the other way around (ha!).
I love the children of Te Uki Ou, my church, my family, singing and a good kai kai. Did you know I was once the third fastest runner in a race around Rarotonga…man I could run.
At Te Uki Ou I am a Teacher’s Aide, teaching Maori Culture and helping the Principal Mr H…he is the best!

Kahmilia (Mia) Mokoroa - Learning Support Assistant

Kia Orana all, My name is Kahmilia May Mokoroa. I am a young 25-year-old girl who has lived most her life here in the Cook Islands. I hail from the line of chiefs on my mother’s side from my Northern and Atiuan heritage. Rarotonga has been my home for some time now which I am super grateful for, for I would not live anywhere else. I am a proud Cookie. I have been an LSA for Apii Te Uki Ou for at least over a year. Being apart of the Te Uki Ou clan has been a real rollercoaster. This school has groomed me to be a better person and not only that it has opened my heart and mind to see that I was made to be a teacher. Coming from a line of teachers as both my parents were I never saw myself doing this, but hey, life’s a Journey.

Mere Ravonu - Learning Support Assistant


Marisha Hickes - Learning Support Assistant


Hohepa Te Rei - Learning Support Assistant


Bernie Whitaker - Learning Support Assistant

Kia Orana, my name is Bernie Whitaker and I am so blessed to have been appointed as a Learning Support Assistant (Teacher Aide) at Apii Te Uki Ou. I have been a Playcentre Mum in New Zealand for the past 8 years and I love supporting children in their learning. They fascinate me in the way they each see things differently and learn in their own ways, at different paces. I am grateful to assist them and nurture as needed. My time with the tamariki is hugely rewarding. I am proud to be a part of this Family and so are my own kids, Will and Lily.

Terrie Nicholas - Learning Support Assistant


Patty Taea - Learning Support Assistant


Craig Watson - Caretaker

Kia orana.
I have moved to Rarotonga, from New Zealand, with my wife and 2 of our daughters. Our daughters attend Tereora College. My wife teaches in Kuriri and I am the caretaker at Apii Te Uki Ou. My hobbies include rugby (All Blacks and Crusaders), league (Tupapa Panthers), and golf – but I am not too keen to play golf in the Rarotongan heat!

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