Chris Bayes

Diocesan School for Girls

Service to Early Childhood Education


Chris Bayes joined Diocesan School for Girls in 2011 as Lead Teacher to establish the early childhood learning facility, known as the Foundation Class. She researched, sourced and purchased all resources for the facility, wrote policies and completed all the necessary paper work and requirements to enable the Foundation Class to be successfully licensed by the Ministry of Education the beginning of 2011.

Chris has made an enormous contribution to Diocesan School for Girls through her wealth of expertise in early childhood pedagogy, which she shares openly with the staff and parents.  She has an in-depth knowledge of the teaching and learning philosophy of Reggio Emilia, Te Whariki, the Early Childhood Curriculum and the Primary Years Programme of the International Baccalaureate.

Chris is also an active participant in the wider Early Childhood profession. She serves as a trustee on a number of Charitable Trusts. Funds raised by this charity are used to provide professional learning opportunities for New Zealand teachers, and in particular young teachers to further their understanding of what innovative practice can look like. Chris was also a member of the George Parkyn Centre for Gifted Education for five years.

For the past eighteen years, Chris has organised study tours to take both early childhood and primary teachers to Melbourne for a week to experience the philosophy of Reggio Emilia.  She has forged strong ties with teachers from the Independent Schools sector, kindergartens and early childhood learning facilities that are visited during these tours.

On a number of occasions Chris has been invited to present at conferences and seminars both in New Zealand and in Australia.

In 1999 Chris Bayes was awarded a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship which she used to explore the educational opportunities available to young children and in 2002 was awarded the North Shore Educator of the Year by the New Zealand Federation of Graduate Women.

Chris is described by her colleagues as open, collaborative, professional, and empowering with a great sense of humour. She has wonderful communication skills and demonstrates the ability to take others with her, ensuring that her students develop a deep love of learning at such an early stage in their educational journey.

Today we are delighted to recognise her substantial contribution and Service to Early Childhood Education with a 2016 ISNZ Honours Award.