Meet the Staff
As a School, we couldn’t do the great job we do with your children without the incredible team of professionals who make up our staff.
SENIOR MANAGEMENT TEAM
Kathy commenced her teaching as a Primary school teacher having completed teacher training and spending an extra year to finish her Bachelors degree. During that time, she completed a double major in order to foster her love of English literature and drama.Three years of teaching Primary students and with the honour of a year with New Entrants, Kathy realised that her plan of moving up the levels to secondary having gained a firm pedagogical base of other levels, was never going to happen and thus she jumped overnight to secondary teaching at Hilcrest High School. Three years later, she received her first promotion and became a Head of Drama at Cambridge High School where she also developed an interest in film and ran a small studio. Having worked extensively with teacher trainees in her classrooms, Kathy was seconded to the University of Waikato to lecture in English, Drama and Film and was fortunate to gain tenure after one year. For six years, Kathy was incredibly motivated to provide the best teacher training that she could and even broke protocol by going into schools to demonstrate for her trainees. During those six years, Kathy returned to another area of interest and performed in dozens of shows that ranged from drama to musicals.A new partnership led to Kathy moving to Auckland and going back into a school as a Head of Drama at Kristin. It was around this time that Senior College was set up in Auckland Central and the lure of a senior secondary school was too hard to resist. In the ensuing 19 years, she became a Dean, Assistant Principal, Deputy Principal and then served as Principal for eleven years. She had always been someone who made timely educational changes and usually this was after about six years. However, in order to leave Senior College there had to be a school that fulfilled her values and had the right ethos. It took a long time to find the perfect place and she is delighted to be a member of the Chilton Saint James family. Kathy has a genuine passion for the education of young women and looks forward to the challenges ahead. Equally, she looks forward to meeting the students and their respective families.
Anne RightfordHead of Preschool
Junior Primary Teachers Dip
Anne joined the Chilton preschool in 1999. She accepted the role of Deputy Principal Preschool two years later and then became the Deputy Principal Junior School in 2008. In 2016, Anne accepted her current role as Head of Preschool.
Born in South Africa, Anne taught both primary and preschool children and established a preschool for underprivileged children in Cape Town before emigrating to New Zealand. Anne’s belief is that all children are able to achieve their goals within a caring and nurturing environment where their learning styles and personalities are understood. Education is her passion and she believes that every child has talent and potential – children today need good learning experiences in order to sustain their future learning.
She is married to Michael and they have a daughter and two sons. Anne enjoys travelling, tramping, yoga, reading, cooking and most of all, socialising with family and friends.
Sue ColsonHead of Middle School
Mark BoydBusiness Director
BCom, GradDip Professional Accounting
Mark joined Chilton in 2013 as the Business Director responsible for finance, operations, IT, and health and safety. An experienced accountant, Mark has spent time living in the USA, working most recently in the hospitality and ski industry.
Currently completing his Chartered Accountants designation, outside of study and work Mark enjoys spending time with his wife, young daughter and watching NASCAR.
Bronwyn BennettChilton Dance Centre Director
ARAD Solo Seal, RAD Life Member, RAD Registered Teacher, RAD Teaching Certificate (Distinction), ISTD Advanced (Modern Branch), ISTD Advanced (National Branch)
With more than 30 years teaching experience Bronwyn’s passion and dedication to dance has inspired many children throughout the Wellington area. Prior to Chilton, Bronwyn owned her own dance school in the Hutt Valley for many years – teaching both Ballet and Jazz. In 2002 she joined joining Chilton Dance Centre in 2002 to focus on teaching Classical Ballet.
Since becoming Director of the Chilton Dance Centre, Bronwyn has worked to build the Dance Centre to a highly successful school, offering a range of dance styles to students taught by high-calibre teachers. Past students have gone onto tertiary dance studies with successful careers in dance and performing arts both nationally and internationally.
In her spare time, Bronwyn enjoys reading, walking and spending time with family.
Jane HambidgeDeputy Principal
Jane is an experienced teacher with 17 years classroom experience. Jane is a born and bred Wellingtonian who started her teaching career at NaeNae College where she taught Classical Studies and Accounting. Jane comes to us after nine years at Upper Hutt College as a Head of Commerce and House Dean.
Whilst at Upper Hutt College one of the many things Jane was involved in was the Fencing club as a manager and fitness trainer. She also implemented new courses to promote Financial Literacy in schools and undertook the National Aspiring Principal’s Programme. Prior to this Jane spent time teaching at secondary schools in the UK where she taught Economics and Business Studies to A level. Jane was also Assistant Head of Commerce at Wellington College where she set up Business Studies courses and Young Enterprise groups.
Jane has always had a strong focus on pastoral care within her teaching practice and looks forward to developing and fostering relationships with the students at Chilton Saint James and the wider school and business community.
HEADS OF DEPARTMENT
Jane is a Cantabrian, who completed her Bachelor’s degree in English linguistics with a minor in French. After completing her teacher training, she commenced her teaching career as an English, Mathematics and Music teacher at Kaiapoi High School in Canterbury. She has also taught at Saint Andrew’s College, Christchurch. Moving to Wellington, she taught Mathematics and English in a range of schools including Aotea College, Upper Hutt College, Hutt International Boys’ School, and Saint Patrick’s College, Silverstream. She has held the position of Head of Department, English, at both Hutt International Boys’ School and Chilton Saint James School. Jane has been involved in the marking panels for Bursary English and NCEA Levels Two and Three.
Jane has coached a wide variety of sports; her main interest is netball where she is a volunteer umpire mentor as well as continuing to coach a junior team. She has also worked with the music departments at Kaiapoi High School and Hutt International Boys’ School as accompanist for school productions. Her interest in sport has continued in the role of supporter of her daughter and son who play tennis, hockey, football and cricket.
Jane completed papers for an Advanced Diploma in Children’s Literature while she raised her second child. She has also worked in the Ministry of Education but quickly returned to her interest in working with young people. Seeing teenagers engage with language and literature and develop empathy for others is what Jane finds rewarding.
Susan completed her Bachelor’s degree at Victoria University followed by a Master of Arts at Canterbury University and her Diploma of teaching. She commenced teaching French and German at Upper Hutt College, remaining there for five years before leaving to raise a family of four children. She resumed teaching French part- time to primary students at Wai Ora Montessori School, did some relief teaching at various Hutt Valley schools and then was appointed as a part-time teacher of French and English at Chilton Saint James School. After six years in this role, she became HOD Languages, teaching French to Years 7 – 13.
Susan considers learning a language to be part of a complete education. The celebration at school of International Languages Week helps to raise awareness of the importance of this. Susan also runs a successful Language Club for Year 7 & 8 girls, giving them the opportunity to experience cultural activities such as cooking, crafts, treasure hunts and the celebration of festivals.
Susan enjoys sharing her passion for French with young people and has led trips to New Caledonia and France. She finds it very rewarding to see the growth in students’ language ability after intensive language lessons and time staying with French families. She loves watching the buzz they get from being able to communicate in French and encourages them to continue to develop and use this real life skill throughout their lives.
Jocelyn began teaching with a New Entrant class in Palmerston North after completing her teacher training in Wellington. She has vast experience in teaching having taught in Primary schools inTauranga and then made the move to secondary when she accepted a position at Kelston Boys High School in Auckland and later completed a stint in the Waikato. This varied career in teaching also encompassed time spent teaching special needs students at Hamilton North Special School as well as teaching students from aged five to eighteen. Not only has she taught in a range of schools but also has experience as a guidance teacher and Dean.
While in the Waikato she completed her Bachelor of Education whilst maintaining a busy teaching life at Melville High School. In coming to Wellington, Jocelyn became Assistant Head of Department at Taita College and Wellington Girls before being appointed as Head of Department at Chilton Saint James 17 years ago. Jocelyn has also experienced Chilton from a parent’s point of view. Her daughter went through the Secondary School graduating in 2013 as the Head Librarian. Her daughter’s enrolment in the school was a clear example of Jocelyn’s belief in a Chilton Education.
Higher learning has always been important to Jocelyn who took the opportunity to finish her Masters in Science with a specialty in Mathematics Education with Distinction. While at Chilton, Jocelyn has lead the Mathematics Department and has been involved in a number of Academic extension initiatives and this year has embarked on the challenge of teaching the CIE curriculum.
Ella enjoys a varied career as a professional musician and educator and relishes her role as Head of Music at Chilton.
Ella has been the Head of Music at Chilton Saint James School for 20 years. Under her direction, the strength of Music including curriculum academic classes, and a vigorous extra-curricular programme of vocal and instrumental music has grown considerably. The school has developed a reputation for the strength of its Music programmes from Primary through to Secondary level. Ella takes great pride and satisfaction from leading a busy and high-achieving Music Department. She is passioante about engaging students in Music and seeing them inspired by Music to achieve highly in all curriculum areas.
Extension and Music performance programmes including the Music Academy programme, Young Musicians and Rising Stars are some of the extension initiatives Ella has implemented over the years.
A comprehensive Itinerant Tutor programme has expanded to 18 top-level instrumental and vocal tutors with a large number of students taking advantge of this opportunity.
Ella is also the Musical Director of the Seraphim Choir at Chilton and the larger non- auditioned I See Red Choir which has around 75 members.
Both the Seraphim choir and the non-auditioned I See Red have won numerous Awards at Regional level over the years and featured in many Big Sing National Finales the first being in 1997!
Ella comes from a family of Christchurch musicians and her parents were both professional pianists. Her mother is a fine classical pianist and Choir Conductor and accompanist, and her father is an awe-inspiring professional jazz pianist. She owes her musical life and passion to them and her five sisters. “Ours was a household which lived and breathed sang and played music of all kinds from Beatles to Beethoven, and Arlen to Abba. Playing by ear was on an equal footing with reading the notes, as was singing in 4 part harmony. We sang together and when we sang we harmonised. We were a choir of six!
Ella studied for her Bachelor of Arts in English and a Bachelor of Music at Canterbury University. Ella won a number of University prizes including the Union of Graduates Music Prize, the Albaster Knowles Music Prize and the Dr JC Bradshaw Music Prize.She also has her. LT.C..L in Piano and Theory.
The Seraphim Choir has travelled widely overseas, attending Festivals and competitions. In 2007 the choir participated in the International Bohuslav Martinu Choir Competition in the Czech Republic where it gained four Silver medals in a variety of Open adult choral classes.
The choir has twice sung National Anthems of France and New Zealand and Australia at Rugby International Test Matches at the Wellington Westpac Stadium.
In 2007 the choir represented New Zealand singing in Belgium at ceremonies in Passeschaendale attendd by The Queen and Heads of State to commemorate the 90th Anniversary of the Battles of Flanders Fields.
In 2011 the choir was accepted to sing Mass on the central altar of St Peter’s in the Vatican. An awe-inspiring and unforgettable experience.
Ella’s journey to becoming a passionate and more knowledgeable musician, teacher choral director has been a meandering one! Her professional musical activities and interests are eclectic and all have contributed to her choral expertise in some way.
She was a professional free-lance pianist and singer, for a number of years, leading her own jazz trio and cabaret band
She was resident pianist for the New Zealand National Film Archive and the NZ Film Festival composing, improvising and performing piano music for silent films for a number of years.
Ella has also worked as pianist, conductor and Musical director for shows and revues for Wellington Musical Theatre and other companies.
Ella is active as a composer, and has composed and arranged a considerable amount of choral music mainly for her own choirs of female voices and is slowly working on preparing more of her music for publication. She has also arranged a number of New Zealand popular songs and firmly believes that the popular song can be a great starting point for choir singing and for choral harmonizing.
Many of Ella’s compositions and arangements have been performed by other choirs at Big Sing Regional Comeptitions.
Since 2006, Ella has been the Musical Director and conductor of the Wellington Schools Artsplash Music concerts, which involves training, co-ordinating and conducting a series of concerts for Primary and Intermediate school children in the Michael Fowler Centre. Under Ella’s direction, participation from schools in the greater Wellington region has continued to grow and she is looking forward to continuing in this role in 2016.
Ella brings a passion for al styles of Music from musical theatre to jazz , popular sacred world music and classical which she considers of equal value.
Ella say she is always excited by her job as Head of Music at Chilton. There is always so more to learn and explore on so many levels. My involvement in teaching
is a joyful and exciting shared musical journey of continuing delight and discovery, and I continue to anticipate every choir practice and performance with energy and enthusiasm. Long may this continue.
Ashley ThomsonSocial Sciences
Nadine studied Physcial Education at the University of Otago and then transferred to Waikato University where she completed a Bachelor of Leisure Studies Degree. She then worked in the UK for several years teaching PE and coaching a range of sports teams, before returning to New Zealand to take up the position as Head of Sport at Queen Margaret College.
There she developed the sports programme from the ground up. Nadine is now into her second year working at Chilton and is proving her worth throughout the school. Nadine believes in providing opportunities for all and that providing pathways to all levels regardless of ability is essential to a successful sports programme. Students need to be exposed to quality sporting experiences where self esteem is enhanced so they then continue to choose to be involved in sport and physical actiivty for life.
Bev NewtonYear 11 and 12 Dean
Bev began her career teaching Materials Technology and Science at Auckland Girls’ Grammar School after completing a Home Science degree in Dunedin and teacher training in Christchurch.
Three years into her teaching career, she was promoted to Dean of Year 10, followed the next year as Acting Head of Department for Foods and Materials. Family life followed but Bev continued working part-time at Onehunga College teaching Special Needs students, Science and Foods. A move to Wellington meant that Bev worked at Te Kura Pounamu, teaching and writing courses, including one of the first on-line courses that the school introduced.
The opportunity to teach part-time at Chilton Saint James School arrived and she relished the opportunity to be back in the classroom. This was followed by four years as HOD of Foods and Materials. Having a family and seeing the importance of spending time with then was a priority but nevertheless her joy of teaching meant that she continued to work part-time. Once her children were a little older, she returned to full-time teaching and has had a varied and exciting programme ever since, including the role of Dean. It is with pleasure that Bev saw one of her students win the Newmarket Young Fashion Designer award in 2014 and in a runner up in 2015.
Jude TungattYear 13 Dean
Jude has a Bachelor of Physical Education from Otago and a Teaching Diploma from Auckland. She began her teaching career at Upper Hutt College where she taught Physical Education, Health and Science. She enjoyed coaching a variety of sports and participating in school tramps and camps. Jude started teaching at Chilton Saint James School as a relief teacher and then took on a part-time role while her four children were young. She moved into a fulltime position in 2007, teaching Health, Physical Education and Food Technology. Jude is responsible for the Education Outside the Classroom programme in the secondary school as well as being a Dean. She really values the opportunity to get to know students outside of the school environment. Jude is kept busy outside of school with her adult children, keeping fit and travelling to visit family overseas.
Jacqui BeetsLibrary Manager
BA (LIS), MA (Hons), GradDipTchg (Secondary), PhD
Jacqui Beets holds qualifications in English Literature, Drama, and Library and Information Studies. Her PhD thesis researched ideologies in historical New Zealand children’s fiction held in specialist collections, principally the National Library’s Dorothy Neal White Collection and the Alexander Turnbull Library.
In addition to a background in school and public libraries, Jacqui is a published children’s author and has worked as an editor, a university English Literature tutor, and a teacher of dance and musical theatre.
Her passions are books, the arts, and lifelong learning. In her spare time she enjoys reading, music, gardening, and researching her family tree.