Brief History

In the very beginning...

Oteha Valley was shrouded in dense native bush. An impressive waterfall marked the upper reaches of the tidal Kaipātiki (Lucas Creek), which meandered through the misty gully. Ika pupuhi (flounder), Tuna (eel) and kōura (freshwater crayfish) were in abundance and at one time a small Ngāti Whātua Māori pa stood on the northern bank.

Native birds like kererū, pīwakawaka and tūī sang from the majestic kauri, rimu and tōtara treetops while insects such as weta and huhu beetles scuttled amongst the thick manuka, bracken and punga undergrowth.

Rangitoto, our maunga, stood proudly in the Waitematā and could be seen from the pōhutukawa covered coastline nearby. 


E mohio ana matou ki nga tohu tuku iho me nga tohu wairua o Oteha i te timatanga. 


We recognise the ancestral and spiritual landmarks of Oteha as it was in the beginning.


As time went on the Oteha/Albany region was slowly cleared for farms and although still sparsely populated with large areas of bush, became well known for strawberry farms and apple orchards. Oteha Valley Road was, at this time, still a gravel road.

As the North Shore became more and more populated Albany changed into the busy business, retail, and residential hub it is today.

Oteha Valley School was opened in 2004. Our school community has changed a lot since then.  We initially had a very diverse community made up of immigrants from many different countries and some ‘kiwi’ families.

 As we have grown over the years so too has our community.  We still have diversity, however today we are now predominantly Chinese.  It is therefore more important than ever for our school to own and share our identity and history.  We want anybody coming on to our grounds to know that we are a school in Aotearoa and we want our community to understand what is important to us.

We have a new building under construction that is going to be a modern learning space – 3 stories high and 18 classroom spaces.  We are incorporating a beautiful wooden tree structure inside the entrance which depicts Tāne Mahuta (the giant Kauri tree) as a symbol of the size of the building on our site and connecting to our theme of the early Oteha native forest.  We will have native trees and birds depicted in various ways throughout the new building and the rest of the school. 

Our Motto

One of meanings we found for Oteha was ‘breath of life’ therefore our motto became ‘Breathing Life into Learning’

Hahatia Te Ora ki nga Akoranga

Breathing Life into Learning



Our Logo

The maroon arch comes from the North Harbour Stadium which was the only landmark in proximity in the days when our school was first built and where we started and spent the first 3 weeks as our buildings were not ready on day 1.  The koru represents our Māori heritage in the name Oteha.

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