BOT Newsletter – Term 3 2022

In this term’s Newsletter:

  • Board Election Results – Introducing the new Board of Trustees
  • Board Vacancies – Request for two more Board Members
  • Property Update – Update on the master planning process 
  • Donation Payments – Update on donations and request for outstanding payments

Board Election Results

With the election results confirmed, the new Board is now in place. Three parent representatives were nominated and duly elected leaving two vacancies. As their first matter to attend to, the new Board would like to thank outgoing Board Members, Kathryn Furness and Craig Jordan, for their service and contribution over the last 3 years.

The Board would like to welcome returning Board Members, Brad Dunstan (who has been reinstated as Chairperson), Carrie Mills (reinstated as Teacher Representative) and Mark Thomson, and new Board Member Catherine Shanaghan. 

Brad Dunstan (Chairperson)

My Relationship to the School: 

I have two children at the school, Hunter year 8 and Fletcher year 5. I was elected to the school Board of Trustees in 2016 and have been the chair since the end of 2018. 

The Reason I joined the Board:

My motivation to re-stand for election was to help transition to a new board, share my school experience and maintain the momentum with the Ministry of Education regarding new classrooms for the school.

My Professional Expertise: 

I work as Head of Public Markets for the New Zealand Superfund which is about investing over the long term to benefit future New Zealanders. I saw alignment between my role at NZSF and the Kohimarama school board as a chance to give back to the community utilising my governance experience and to ensure a future focused board that set the school up for success well beyond my own children’s years at the school.  

Paul Engles (Principal)

My Relationship to the School:

I have been an educator for forty one years across a variety of school settings the length of New Zealand. I have the privilege of being the Principal of Kohimarama School for the last five years. I have three children, all grown adults, and will again be a grandfather within the next fortnight.

My position as Leader and CEO to the Board:

My focus is to ensure that the students at Kohimarama School thrive. That opportunities are created, learning developed and enhanced, achievement is lifted/maintained at a high standard and that all students experience success. I wholeheartedly support the Kohimarama Way as our way of being uniquely a whole person and contributor to our world. I have responsibilities for the pedagogy (learning), finances, property, human resources and wellbeing of the school.   

My Professional Expertise:

During my time as Principal, I have had the opportunity of further extending and developing my professional skills by attending Harvard University, Graduate School of Education and The University of Valletta where I worked with Edward DeBono. I have represented the Ministry of Education at the International Summit on Education in Windsor presenting an evidence-based research project which I led across New Zealand. I am currently the President of the Remuera Principals Association, Leader of our Kahui Ako (Community of learning), and mentor principal to those starting out in their career.

Carrie Mills (Teacher Representative)

My Relationship to the School and Professional Expertise:

I have been at Kohimarama School for 10 years, becoming a classroom teacher 7 years ago. Prior to this I have lived and worked in the UK, having started my teaching in Wellington. 

The Reason I Joined the Board:

I love this school as it makes the needs of the students central to all that we do and our current vision of We Dream, We Inspire, We Create, and We Empower enables this. I joined the Board of Trustees as the staff representative in order to provide the elected Parent Board members a staff member’s/teacher’s perspective and voice into how the school is governed.

Mark Thomson (Deputy Chair)

My Relationship to the School:

I joined the Board in December 2020. I have three children: Oliver T in Cowley year 3, Pippy in Kiri year 1 and Heidi who will join Kiri next year. 

The Reason I Joined the Board:

Having three young children at the school means I am strongly vested in the enduring success of the school at all levels. I have enjoyed supporting the school through my work on the Kohimarama School board to date. I am the Deputy Chair and currently administering the finance portfolio in addition to working on property related matters.

The Expertise I Bring:

In my professional life I have 18 years’ experience planning and delivering major capital projects. I am a Principal at engineering consulting firm Beca where I lead a team of 40+ professional Project and Programme Managers. My experience leading capital projects is directly relevant to school property matters. I am also a member of the Institute of Directors.

Catherine Shanaghan

My Relationship to the School: 

I have a son in Year 6 and have been involved with the school since he started in Year 1. From helping out in the classroom, leading a Walking School Bus, through to producing content for the website, I’m really pleased to continue supporting our great local school. 

The Reason I joined the Board: 

One of my core values is living in a society where everyone can thrive and supporting my local school to prepare our children for the future is one way I can achieve this. 

The Expertise I Bring: 

I bring to the Board expertise in communications and change. My professional background is in product development and marketing, and more recently digital transformation and organisational change. I’m particularly interested in psychology and the future of work, which has led me to recently start my own business; a psychometrics company focused on human values. 

Board Vacancies

The Board is now looking for two more people from our school community to join us as Board members. We’re ideally seeking people with finance, property or legal skills. However, we are open to all backgrounds as our main criteria is that you are passionate about making a difference for our school.

If you had previously thought about joining the Board, we really encourage you to reach out to Brad Dunstan (via )or another Board member to learn more about what is involved, and the commitment needed. Placement will not be via another election and the Board is open to having members who would prefer to commit for a shorter 18-month term. 

Property Update

The Board and school leadership are continuing to work with the Ministry of Education to progress a Property Masterplan that will deliver a long-term property solution based on current and future roll growth demands. 

A range of high-level options have now been developed by architects Warren & Mahoney, which reflect the input they received from staff and students. They are now working with the Ministry to consider the best options to move through to the next stage of planning. We will be able to share more information in due course.

Donation Payments

Again, we would like to thank the families that have paid your donations. Just on 75% of donations have now been paid. If you are yet to make your payment it is not too late to do so and there are no penalties or consequences for late payment. Your donations play a vital part in retaining smaller class sizes by enabling the school to fund additional teaching staff and Learner Assistants. 

We are also grateful to those who have signed up to TaxGift ( enabling the tax refundable component of your school donation to be reinvested in the school. If this is something you would like to do moving forward, it only takes a couple of minutes to sign up via Kindo.  Details of this are on the school website here.