About Hillcrest Normal School

Hillcrest Normal School (HNS) was officially opened on 4 April 1923 with two classrooms and a headmaster’s room. Today, we have a roll of around 600 students across Years 0-6 and the school is made up of 24 classrooms set in expansive park-like grounds with mature trees, a dedicated sports turf and multiple play areas.

Our committed team of teachers, learning assistants and administration staff go above and beyond in providing learning experiences for children. They are passionate about education and learning and are constantly upskilling.

There is a strong focus on reading, writing and mathematics at HNS, demonstrated by high levels of progress and achievement across the school. We also believe the arts have an important place in learning, with visual arts, music, dance and drama key features of the school.

Tikanga and Te Reo Māori are interwoven through school life, and all children experience kapa haka.  We also embrace technology as a means of learning, sharing learning with friends and family, and communicating with others.

At HNS we recognise the importance of strong parent-school partnerships and the value of each of our roles being strengthened when we work together in the best interests of the children. We are fortunate to have a strong base of parental support in our school and there are many opportunities throughout the year that parents and whānau are welcome to be involved in.

Our Vision

At Hillcrest Normal School we take a holistic approach to learning. Our teaching and learning encompasses the whole child – mind, body, spirit and whānau (family).

We respect the experiences each child brings with them, recognising their individual strengths and shining a light on their unique gifts and interests.

We create a rich, authentic learning environment that capitalises on our students’ natural curiosity, to foster a lifelong love of learning.


Our vision statement is supported by our school values, which are woven throughout all we do.

Living Our Values

Making our school values relevant and meaningful to everyone sets a positive tone at Hillcrest Normal School. At the beginning of each year, every class develops a classroom treaty – a partnership agreement between the teacher and the students, focused on the values of the school. Throughout the year teachers work these values into their class programmes. The class treaty agreements form a strong basis for discussion and putting our school values into action.

Children participating in coding classes, learn basic fundamentals of coding.

Children enjoy the challenges associated with technology.

Creativity is both encouraged and embraced.

Physical activity is a fun and valuable part of the children’s day.

What's a Normal School?

Hillcrest Normal School is one of a few schools associated with the Waikato University Faculty of Education, Te Kura Toi Tangata, assisting with the training of future teachers. There are often groups of student teachers and their lecturers working in our school. Children benefit from the additional small group and individual tuition available, as well as from the use of the Faculty of Education, its equipment and resources.


We are proud to be a Green-Gold Enviroschool, working towards sustainable solutions for our planet. Green-Gold is the highest status possible for an Enviroschool and means our students are learning to conserve, share, grow and take action for a sustainable environment as an integrated part of their everyday school life.

The school has a dedicated Enviro group to extend children who have a special interest in the environment. They work in the school gardens (Veggie Village) and on special projects around the school.

Annual Report

Strategic Plan

Policies & Procedures

Our school works with SchoolDocs to create a website for our policies and procedures. Please click here to view these.

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