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Dr Lucy Hone
Photo by Charlotte Sowman

Introducing Dr Lucy Hone 

Rowan Milburn —

On our first official day back at school the staff were fortunate to hear a presentation from Lucy Hone on Character Strengths. 

Lucy recently completed a PhD through AUT where she was investigating how wellbeing and resilience can be measured and promoted. She also worked a great deal with key organisations such as MoE and Fletcher EQR in post-quake Christchurch, and is currently working with several New Zealand schools to help them use the Character Strengths understandings to develop wellbeing and resilience strategies in young people.

All of our Year 9 students complete the Youth VIA Character Survey as part of the Learning to Learn class they have once a week. This identifies a student’s 24 character strengths based on survey questions. This information will be shared with the student’s teachers so that character strengths can link into work they are completing and skills that they are acquiring. These character strengths are not fixed so a student can work on certain strengths and they may then change over time.

Teachers are also interested in students’

character strengths as it naturally aligns with goal setting and can be a good place to start when giving a student feedback.

If you are a parent of a Year 9 or 10 student, ask your child what their top character strength is. This could be a great dinner time conversation starter. You’re welcome!!

We are planning on getting Year 11-13 students to complete the survey with their Tutor Teachers in the near future.

If you are interested in identifying your character strengths take the free VIA survey here:


And for your interest, our staff have all taken the VIA survey and as a staff we can now reveal that our top character strength is honesty, closely followed by fairness.

We look forward to continuing our work with Lucy Hone and Character Strengths.

Rowan Milburn (Deputy Principal: Student Wellbeing) and Marie Stribling (Deputy Principal: Student Learning)