Board of Trustees Newsletter – Term 1 2018

Strategic news and Board initiatives

The Board of Trustees

Board of Trustees’ meetings are usually held on the third Monday of each month at 6:30pm and, with the exception of some confidential matters, are open to the public to attend.

Zara T-C, Year 7-8 Photography student

We update you on board issues with one newsletter per school term and welcome your feedback.

BOT End of Term 1 News

Firstly, we are delighted to welcome Carrie Mills to the Board.

Hi there—I have recently joined the Board of Trustees as the new Staff Representative taking over from Ashleigh Milne. I have been teaching for over 20 years, starting off in Wellington and then moving to the UK and teaching there.  I have worked at Kohimarama School for over 5 years now in various roles. In doing these roles I have seen how hard the staff work to ensure great positive outcomes for the children at Kohimarama School in both their learning and in who they are as individuals. It’s a great school, and I look forward to all that we will achieve as a school community.—Carrie

It has been particularly pleasing in the current climate of teacher shortages that we’ve been able to start 2018 fully staffed with quality teachers.  This has been the result of a great effort from not only the Senior Management Team, but everyone in terms of making Kohimarama the school of choice for teachers as well as students.

It has also been gratifying to see the improved communication implemented through the new website, with newsletters now accessed online and with an improved format.

In terms of governance, the board has been attending to a number of items:

  • Recently performed our regular walk around of the school for a health and safety audit;
  • Have updated our comprehensive H&S management system;
  • Attended professional development in the financial area.

Many of you will have seen announcements from the new Education Minister, Chris Hipkins, about the Government’s intention to bring about significant changes to New Zealand education policy, including ending National Standards.

James B, Year 7-8 Photography student

Kohimarama School’s Board and Management Team are following these developments closely, to ensure that we have a timely understanding of what is envisaged, and that the interests of our students are assured in the meantime.

At this stage there are no immediate changes necessary, and we will be continuing with our previously planned assessment and reporting processes.

As the new government’s approach becomes clearer we will evolve our programme as necessary and keep the school community well informed.

Donations

We are grateful to see that as at 31 March, 59.51% of parents have paid their annual donation in full.  This amount continues to rise and is higher than at the same time last year.  This gives the school confidence that we will again exceed 81% for the full year.

The Board would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have paid and outline in more detail the vital role your annual donation plays in the funding of our school.

The Ministry of Education funds most of our operational expenditure and the salaries of most of our staff. The Ministry also programmes capital improvements which are supplemented by the school. The PTA and school community provides for our annual capital requirements including technology, library books, etc.

The annual parent donation provides a vital bridge in the gap between the base level of funding we receive from the Ministry and the actual cost to the school of funding the range of programmes we offer.

Henry W, Year 7-8 Photography student

Specifically these donations permit us to fund an additional three teachers, ensuring that every class in the School is smaller and thereby significantly improving the learning opportunities for every child. Our ability to provide this improved student/teacher ratio is only possible through the funds we receive from the annual school donation.

The Board reviews the amount of the donation annually taking into account the financial impact on families. It is currently set at $470 per student. We believe this represents great value given its direct contribution to raising the achievement standards of our students and the benefit to our school as a whole.  We are pleased to have only had a single increase of $20 in the last nine years.

Please also remember that there are several ways in which your donation can provide a tax deduction benefit.

We welcome your feedback around the donation. If you have any questions relating to the donation please contact any member of the Board.

Once again, thank you to the majority of families that have already paid their donation. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Thank You

Maia Z, Year 7-8 Photography student

We’d like to express our sincere gratitude to everyone in the Kohimarama School community who puts in an effort on behalf of our children and their future.

To the parents who freely give of their time as parent helpers, coaching sports teams, helping with road patrols, walking buses, in the classrooms and in any way asked.

To the PTA who continue to fund raise and bring the community together in a fun and enjoyable way.

The staff who, without exception, go the extra mile and visibly show their professionalism, enjoyment and enthusiasm for the children and their development.

And finally, the children themselves.  We’re all proud of you and look forward to continuing to share your journey.

The Board of Trustees, Kohimarama School