Convicted sex offender – a school principal who identifies as “bisexual” – and the NZ Teacher’s Council register

The Herald on Sunday reported on 1 August 2010. “A convicted offender is still registered on the New Zealand Teachers Council website despite being convicted for molesting boys in two different schools in the early 1990s…. Elvis Dobson Shepherd was suspended  on full pay in November 2007 after being charged with sexually abusing students at both Hato Paora (St Paul) College [at Chelterham in Feilding] and Hato Petera College [in Northcote] Auckland.”

[See: Reg. No. 177105. Mr Shepherd’s teacher registration was eventually cancelled and he was placed under “censure” after he was sentenced to a jail term of eight years and four months in September 2010. Just over two-and-a-half  years later he is now up for a parole hearing -reported two days ago 20/05/2013].

Stuff News reported on 31 July 2010, after a name suppression order for the sex offender was lifted:

“The sexual encounters between Elvis Dobson Shepherd and two teenage boys occurred while he was teaching and living at Hato Petera College, a Maori Catholic boarding school on the North Shore.

“The 49-year-old, [also known as Tihirau Shepherd], who identifies as bisexual, was also a student at the school before returning to teach te reo Maori in an experimental total immersion unit in 1989.”

The Herald on Sunday report stated:

Elvis Dobson Shepherd was found guilty of four indecent assault charges against two teenagers in the High Court at Palmerston North on Friday [30 July 2010].

“The offences took place while Shepherd was teaching at Hato Petera College, a Maori Catholic boarding school on Auckland’s North Shore.

“Shepherd found employment at Maori boarding school Hato Paora near Palmerston North despite allegations of sexual encounters with boys at his previous post.

“Former Hato Petera trust board member Ashley Balls said Shepherd ‘deserted his post’ before the allegation was properly investigated. He then became deputy principal of Hato Paora in Feilding in 2002.

“Balls said he called Hato Paora to warn them about Shepherd’s past when he found information about the incident in the school files years later.

“But Hato Paora took no action and in 2007 two students came forward with allegations of sexual abuse. The school investigated, but found there was no case to answer.

“However, the Ministry of Education suspended Shepherd in November 2007.

But Balls said it was “odd” that the Teachers Council still had Shepherd listed on full registration. Balls described the situation as “political correctness gone mad”.

” ‘They couldn’t take the complaint to the Teachers Council because they hadn’t got anything provable’.

“Minister of Education Anne Tolley said she had complete confidence in the processes that would be followed by the Teachers Council to ensure Shepherd was never allowed in a classroom again. She said the Government also recently introduced much greater protection by passing data-matching laws which would mean this man would be identified if he ever sought employment at a school.

“In June, the Herald on Sunday revealed that three teachers who were sacked or quit over misconduct were still registered to teach on the official database that was supposed to warn parents and schools. The teachers kept their legal right to work in a classroom despite complaints to the New Zealand Teachers Council.”


Sex offender still registered on teacher website.

Sunday Star Times. 1 August 2010

Story by Anna Rushworth.

Fairfax NZ Media

School Principle molested students

Story by Bronwyn Torrie. 31 July 2013

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