The decision to rebrand Te Kura o Te Tauawa - Halswell School came after a comprehensive community consultation process that determined the existing brand did not reflect the unique nature and attributes of the current learning environment and newly adopted cultural narrative. So the process began in order to create something that did.

About The School

Te Kura o Te Tauawa - Halswell School is a happy, fun loving and engaging school with a big heart. What began in 1864 as a small rural school with only 19 students is today a modern suburban school supported by 60 staff with over 700 students. It has become a vastly different school from its humble beginnings.


The school has faced a number of challenges over the years. None more so as a result of the magnitude 7.1 earthquake that hit Christchurch in 2010. The school was damaged beyond repair and, as a result, was rebuilt in 2013. It was the first school to be rebuilt and was officially opened in 2015.


A new strategic direction was established that helped determine what learning would look like in the new environment. It would be play based and centred around a culture of continuous improvement. Three key areas ('pou') were defined to help drive the strategic direction. These were Community, Wellbeing and Learning through Experiences.


This is how the school describes each of their pou:


  • Community - we embrace community involvement from extended whānau. This also extends to the relationships we are growing with the South West Cluster schools. We have a strong connection with the global community through a well established international fee-paying student programme. Part of this involves opportunities for our staff and students to visit other countries to learn about different cultures.


  • Wellbeing - we have a growing focus on student and staff wellbeing through the development of a positive education programme. This includes the introduction of initiatives such as Pause, Breathe, Smile and PB4L.


  • Learning through Experiences - we provide opportunities for our students to learn by engaging in a range of rich and authentic learning experiences that not only help to develop academically but also to develop the dispositions that will set them up for life. An example of this is our commitment to Play Based Learning


There are five school values - Manaakitanga, Whanaungatanga, Manawanui, Kotahitanga and Kaitiakitanga. ‘Learning to Thrive’ is the school vision that drives students to be their best.

The New School Logo

After a community consultation process it was felt that the existing logo had very little meaningful connection with the current school and that it was too similar to the Paper Tree Book Shop logo. So the process to create a new school logo began.


The new design comprises of two key elements - an oak tree and a stream. The oak tree recognises the past (used in the previous logo) while the stream embraces the new as a reflection of the cultural narrative and the gifted name, ‘Te Kura O Te Tauawa’.

Old School Logo
New School Logo

The tree with its many branches reflects the continuous growth at Halswell School. It also symbolises the diverse range of learning opportunities that students have as they ‘branch out’ in their learning and discovery of new things. The leaves represent growth and the health of the school. Staff care for the wellbeing of their students.


The stream comprises of five lines symbolising the five school values. In the same way water helps nourish the Oak tree, the school values help develop well rounded, healthy and happy students while supporting the development of a strong and robust school culture. The koru wave in the stream symbolises continuous growth and support. The wave also alludes to resilience and the tree being able to withstand anything thrown at it.


The design is modern and very versatile to allow for different situations and applications such as on school uniforms, signs around the school as well as on newsletters and other forms of communications such as the school website.

New School Signage

The school is situated behind a high fence next to a main highway making the school difficult to be seen from the main road. Getting to the school is via side streets. So spaces were utilised, in view of these streets, for the logo to appear as large and as clear as possible. Once the signs were up it was as if they had always been there.

Halswell School Hall Sign
Roof Sign
Halswell School Office Sign
Halswell School Gate Sign

School Values Branding

As part of the rebrand new symbols were created for each of the school values. These were created in consultation with student leaders from the different year groups. An Ethos Diagram was created as well and appears in the office area and in classrooms to help promote the vision, values, pou and the relationship between the three. They represent the 'what', 'how' and 'why' of Te Kura o Te Tauawa - Halswell School.

Halswell School - Whanaungatanga
Halswell School - Kotahitanga
Halswell School - Manaakitanga
Halswell School - Manawanuitanga
Halswell School - Kaitiakitanga
Halswell School Ethos Diagram

Values Pou

One of the things I really enjoy seeing is how schools take what I have created and use them in exciting and innovative ways. Halswell School commissioned a company to have pou created for the junior play areas. The values are created in bronze and attached to the top of each pou.

Values Pou - Junior Play Area

Halswell School's logo ranked 37th in


"I’m putting this one in there for all the thousands of school logos out there. Most of them, particularly for high schools, are snoozefest traditional crests or latin lamps that blur into cold wallpaper and can probably never be changed. Our primary schools, on the other hand, seem to be in the process of at least attempting to keep up with the times. Craig Burton seems to be on a single-handed mission to design new logos for every school in the country, and I liked this one as an example – bright, welcoming, and smart. I’d send my kids there if I was picking by logo."

Toby Morris, Creative Director
- The Spinoff


Wanting a new school logo design?

I'd love to work with you on creating an unique logo design for your school. The story behind why the logo looks the way it looks is just as important. Read some of the ĢƵ below, if you'd like to explore this further, or give me a call.

Leave a Comment