Accredited Facilitator (English-medium)

Region: Otago/Southland
Jo Barr


Postgraduate Certificate in Education (Mathematics Education) – Massey University
Mathematics Support Teacher (MST) – Te Toi Tupu and Te Tapuae o Rehua
Certificate of Educational Management – Dunedin College of Education
Bachelor of Education – University of Otago
Diploma in Primary Education – Dunedin College of Education
2023 Sounds-Write Practitioner

Professional profile

Jo’s career has been dedicated to primary education where she fostered strong connections with ākonga, whānau, colleagues and support agencies. She has in-depth understanding and experience in teaching in the primary sector and the New Zealand Curriculum. Her strengths include literacy (including structured literacy); mathematics and statistics; the key competencies; leading for change; learning design; facilitation and mentoring.

Prior to joining Tātai Aho Rau Core Education, Jo spent over 20 years teaching in primary and secondary settings from Year 1 to Year 9 classes. She held senior leadership roles for over 15 years. Jo has extensive experience engaging ākonga in their learning and in leading teams to ensure that all learning was central to the students' needs and wellbeing.

During her teaching career, Jo held many curriculum responsibilities including literacy and mathematics. She spent several years teaching school-wide to accelerate learning in maths for children working below expected achievement trajectories. This involved postgraduate study in mathematics education, productive inquiry into programme design, development and teaching, with knowledge building on intervention strategies. This learning flowed into the wider school setting with Jo facilitating schoolwide development in teacher pedagogy and practice through an inquiry process.

Jo’s journey in structured literacy stems back to 2011, and since then, she has actively sought opportunities to read, trial and refine her knowledge and practice in literacy. Jo was part of a team that established a structured literacy approach across a primary setting, with specific focus on the junior and middle years. The thirst to better meet the needs of all learners using a systematic, scientific-evidence based approach to literacy was the heart of the initiative.

Equity and deep learning are at the heart of Jo’s facilitation mahi.


  • Collaboration
  • Literacy (including structured literacy)
  • Mathematics
  • Leading for change
  • Facilitation and mentoring
  • The key competencies.

Conference presentations, keynotes, seminars, workshops

Doing Things Differently to Engage At-Risk Learners – Otago Mathematics Symposium
Less is More – Otago Mathematics Symposium
Practice to Accelerate Learning in Mathematics (ALiM) – Guest presentation at ALiM Impact Day
Rich Mathematics Task – as part of a subcluster within the Otepoti ki Te Raki - Kāhui Ako Dunedin
Structured Literacy: Programme Design, Implementation and Resourcing – Dunedin Resource Teachers of Literacy

Personal statement

I have a passion for education, particularly in facilitating all ākonga to realise and reach their potential. I have a strong sense of equity and I advocate for all children to succeed socially, emotionally and academically.