Board of Trustees Newsletter – Term 2 2019

Strategic news and Board initiatives

The Board of Trustees

The Board is responsible for setting the strategic direction of the school through establishing three-year strategic goals such as in the area of student achievement, and assessing progress towards them. It is also accountable for principal performance and while it does not get involved in day-to-day management issues it does ensure school management is satisfactorily delivering on key aspects of the school including the health and safety of students and staff, finance and property.

The Kohimarama School Board comprises:

  • The School Principal – Appointed by the Board of Trustees.
  • A Teacher Representative – An elected position, chosen by the school’s teachers.
  • Parent Representatives – Up to five elected positions, chosen by the parents and caregivers of our students.
  • Co-opted Trustees – The Board may at their discretion Co-opt additional resources in order to adequately meet strategic needs.

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

Board Elections

Board elections for Parent Representatives are held every three years, with the election cycle starting this month.

Nominations Close Friday 24 May 2019
Voting Papers sent out Wednesday 29 May 2019
Voting Closes Noon Friday 7 June 2019
Votes Counted Thursday 13 June 2019
Board Appointed Friday 14 June 2019

We invite anyone who feels they could make a positive contribution to the leadership and strategic direction of the school to consider standing in the role of Parent Representative. Note these roles are open to anyone, and not just parents/caregivers of current students.

The New Zealand School Trustees Association (https://www.nzsta.org.nz/) is the official resource to assist trustees. They have set up a website to assist people who are considering standing as a Parent Representative:
https://www.trustee-election.co.nz/

Board News

Brad Dunstan has been elected Chair for 2019 after serving over two years as a Parent Representative. We thank Simon Tucker for the two years’ service he provided as Chair.

Susan Cotton has recently resigned from her Parent Representative role on the Board. Susan has made an outstanding contribution to the Kohimarama School Board of Trustees serving over 5 years as a parent representative including four years as Chair. We thank her for her work, will miss her enthusiasm, passion and capability, and wish her all the best for the future.

Jen Duder, Simon Tucker and Stuart Lewis have indicated they are unlikely to stand as Parent Representatives for the coming three-year term. We thank them for their contribution to the School.

Co-option of Trustees

Earlier this year the Board co-opted two new trustees to provide additional strategic and operational dimensions to the Board. In order to introduce them to the school community we quickly profile them here:

Matt Bolger has a daughter in her second year at Kohi School, and twin three-year-old boys. In his working life, Matt is Fonterra’s Director, Farmer Services. He has spent 16 years in Fonterra in a variety of roles including strategy, sales, and senior leadership roles based in New Zealand and Chicago. Matt has a degree in international business, English literature, and Japanese. Outside of work, for the last 5 years Matt has worked with the Springboard Trust, a non-profit organisation that provides strategic leadership programmes for school principals.

Kristin Sutherland has been assisting the Board for over a year. A health professional by trade she returned from the UK with an MBA, moving into health services and project management, working in organisations including the Ministry of Health, EQC and University of Auckland. Kristin has governance experience, sitting on the Auckland Property Investors Association board and reporting to various boards and ministers. She has two children who have been part of the Kohi school community, Hamish (10) and Jake (7).

Tomorrow’s Schools

Thanks to everyone who made a submission on this report within the deadline. We will be following with interest to see how the government responds.

A copy of Kohimarama School’s Board of Trustees submission can be found here: https://www.kohimarama.school.nz/2019/04/reform-commentary-april-2019/

Donations

We are grateful to see that as at 30 April, 60.21% 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.

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.

A Note of Thanks

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