Denis has a wealth of experience as a leader in secondary schools. He was principal of two highly successful secondary schools, Horowhenua College (1994-99) and Papanui High School (2000-2011). Prior to that he taught in a range of secondary schools throughout the country and in France. For 4 years he was the Chairperson of the Canterbury/West Coast Secondary principals’ Association.
Since 2011 he has been working full time as the South island Director of the National Aspiring Principals’ Programme, as a mentor on the New Zealand First Time Principals’ Programme, the Chairperson of the Complaints Assessment Committee of the Teachers Council . He also has considerable experience as an education consultant engaged in advising Boards on such matters as Principal appointments and appraisal, self review, strategic planning and middle management.
In 2016 he spent an entire year living in France.
- Leadership development for current principals, aspiring principals and middle managers
- Distributed leadership
- Change management
- Building a coaching culture
- Strategic planning
- School development
- Raising student achievement
- Marketing for international students
- International school partnerships
- Work in bi or multi-cultural communities
- School/business/community partnerships
Conferences and presentations
Wellington TRCC AP/DP symposia 20014/15/17 “Leadership; enjoying the ride”
Presentations to more than 30 Christchurch groups; “Let’s give youth a chance”
Awards, fellowships and scholarships
1986 Woolf Fisher fellow
I’ve always been driven by a fairly strong social justice agenda and I see our schools as being pivotal in ensuring that all our young people get the best of starts. Effective leadership in schools is the central factor in ensuring the high quality of the education sector. I love working alongside existing and aspiring principals and middle leaders, helping them to a deeper understanding of the challenges, the complexities….and the joy and excitement… of leadership.