It is an honour to be appointed as the first principal of Shotover Primary School.  There is a huge amount of work to do so we are ready to receive your kids come term 1, 2015.

Ben Witheford | Principal

Ben Witheford | Principal

Shotover will be very focussed on giving your kids the best possible educational deal.  It is my role to along with the people we employ to make this goal your reality. 

The task of education is one that still has huge purpose, influence in creating and moulding young lives so they are productive members of the world in which they find themselves.  That might sound a bit airy, fairy but in a short sentence it does describe a nugget of truth.  I enjoy immensely the challenge of leading and creating a school community that gives all children that opportunity.  

When I'm not at work, I enjoy playing with technology, mountain biking, spending time with my family including our chocolate lab, Bono.


Claire Buist | Associate Principal

Claire Buist | Associate Principal

Claire Buist joins us from St Clair school in Dunedin where she currently AP and team leader of the years 5 & 6 team.  Claire will be bringing a wealth of experience to Shotover School.  A teacher and leader who leads by example.  Setting the example in the classroom of what brilliant practice looks like.

Claire is passionate about the use of digital tools within classroom programmes that promote student learning. It’s about the right tool for the task and using it and its potential so as to transform the nature of teaching and learning.  In 2013, Claire was one of only 5 New Zealand teachers inducted into the CORE Education eFellowship which acknowledged her leadership in the use of e-Tools and enabled her to undertake further study.

Claire is looking forward to joining the growing team of Shotover Primary and bringing her extensive and successful experience into the senior leadership mix as we mould what will become the culture and curriculum of Shotover.


Evelyn Aurik  |  Associate Principal

Evelyn Aurik  |  Associate Principal

My name is Evelyn Aurik, and I am thrilled to be joining the Shotover team.

I desire the absolute best for the people around me. I am excited about education and enjoy researching ideas and finding out ways to improve what we do.

I have come from Myross Bush School where I was Deputy Principal and team leader of the Junior Syndicate. In my role I team taught four days per week in the New Entrant class and was released for one day a week for leadership.

I am married to Robert and we have three adult children who we are very proud of. Family is important to me and I treasure every moment with them. I enjoy biking, caravanning and gardening. I am ready for an adventure and am looking forward to living and working in Queenstown and becoming a part of the community.

To be effective I believe that it is important to build positive and trusting relationships and I am excited about meeting you all.  


Trineka Newton | Executive Officer

Trineka Newton | Executive Officer

We are delighted to have Trineka Newton onboard as our Executive Officer.  Trineka is taking the lead in the office/administration area of the school and is likely to be a first-point-of-contact for visitors to the school.  She brings a high level of knowledge and experience of school systems having previously been employed at Goldfields Primary School in a similar capacity.  

Living in the local region she enjoys skiing, mountain biking, local vineyards and spending time with her young family in the outdoors.  Trineka is enjoying being part of the initial development and is looking forward to getting to know the foundation learners and their families.