Taupo-nui-a-Tia College is guided by three values:  Whakapono, Wero, and Manaakitanga

Our 8 cornerstone values have been rebranded under 3 new values.  These values connect to the tupuna (ancestor) our school is named after.   His name is Tia. One of the meanings for Taupō is cloak.  When Tia saw the peculiar colouring and appearance of the cliffs by Hallet’s Bay, near Taupō he said something like, “this looks like my cloak!”  We are, Taupo-nui-a-Tia, the great cloak of Tia.

Tia was a humble, peaceful person who had his people at his heart.  He had mana and was respected by his people. He understood duty, and his place and role within the community.  He also respected authority.

Tia embodied the values of Whakapono, Wero, and Manaakitanga.

Whakapono – is about reflecting honesty and integrity in all that you do

Wero – is about showing courage and bravery in all school-related activities, and challenging yourself and others around you to be your best

Manaakitanga – is about respecting and supporting everyone around you, working well with others, and showing care and a sense of duty for others and the environment

I nga o mua - painting above 

I nga wa o mua

The past is before you

This painting represents Taupo nui-a-Tia College.

It is a painting of our Maunga - Tauhara - at sunrise with our moana/roto – Lake Taupo in the for ground. Tia the explorer / our chief stands over the top keeping guard. It also contains the symbols from our school emblem, the lake, the trout and the Taiaha as well as three poupou, which carry our values- whakapono, wero and manaakitana. All of the symbols and the carvings have been taken from our school and our wharenui.

Meaning/ representation

The Sunrise each day can be a new start and a new beginning and builds on from the learning of the day. This builds on a quote from a dear friend of mine , Papuni Turetahi.

 I nga wa o mua

The past is before you.

One walks towards the past guided by one’s ancestors, while behind exists the future.

This quote also brings in the reason for have Tia so distinguished looking over us all and moving forward to our future pathways.

The kowhaiwhai pattern is painted in white representing promise for the future and awakening. It is Mangopare- from the hammerhead shark which represents strength courage and power.

The Taiaha is a symbol of valour, strength and protection representing not just a Māori weapon but also a cultural treasure. Our students are certainly this. A symbol of transition, signifying the passage into adulthood.  A Taiaha serves as a powerful reminder of the journey into adulthood, connecting the recipient with the cultural roots.

The Trout. Yes, it’s on our crest and has always been seen to represent the Taupo area. Spiritually the trout also symbolises encouragement to trust instincts and adapt to

changing circumstances. The swift movement in the water signify agility and grace and symbolise the importance of navigating through life’s challenge. These meanings are more fitting for a school and our students and would be the reason for being on the school crest – they are the reason the trout is part of the painting. I have also painted the brown trout, and not the rainbow, as they are more territorial hence more loyal.

The Poupou standing tall in the water are taken from the carvings on the front of the Wharenui. They represent our ancestors but also, a connection with the past and moving forward. On these are written our school values- whakapono, wero and manaakitanga .

The Maihi from the Wharenui is also there. It sits below Tia. These are the arms that welcome and protect, keeping our students safe.

The use of the Wharenui also brings in the four walls of Hauora – caring and wellbeing for all who are here and have a feeling of belonging.

This painting depicts our school, our aroha for our students and our care for their future by understanding their strengths and weaknesses as well as their past.

Lesley Purdon 2024