"Be the best you can be ..."


Craig McDonald

Kia ora koutou, nau mai, haere mai ki Te Kura o Awakeri!

My name is Craig McDonald and I have been principal at Awakeri School since July 2019. I grew up in Auckland and have lived/taught in Christchurch, Pāpāmoa, Ōpōtiki and Japan. I live in Whakatane with my wife and two daughters (and cats!).

I am excited to be part of a growing school with a solid reputation in the Bay of Plenty, a school with a vibrant and positive culture, where excellence and kindness are a way of life. Our school motto is "Be the best you can be", and it is a great privilege to see this put into practice by staff and students alike on a daily basis.

To be successful in life we should live with humanity, humility and humour (the 3 HUMs!), and I always endeavour to bring this into my leadership of the school.  Awakeri School is a taonga, a treasure. It is a vibrant, caring, inclusive community where excellence is a way of life.  Authentic relationships, clear values and unity of vision are key to enabling educational achievement across a school. Awakeri is a school with a culture of respect, where risk-taking is encouraged; a place of high expectations where the children’s confidence and self-management is fostered at every opportunity. 

My door is usually open, feel free to get in touch - I will look forward to meeting with you.

Ngā mihi nui,

Craig McDonald



"Kia Toa, Kia Manawanui"