A meet the candidates evening will be held in the Western Springs College Library at 7 pm on Thursday 26 May 2016.
This postal election closes at noon on Friday 3 June 2016. Details on how to send your vote are contained in the cover letter that will be sent with your voting paper by Wednesday 25 May.
Rob Coltman (Current Board Member)
I am a lawyer specialising in dispute work including health and safety advice to the education sector. I am a partner in the national law firm, Duncan Cotterill. I first joined the Board in 2012 and served as Board Chair for a period during which time the Board successfully negotiated funding from the Ministry of Education for the school rebuild. I am keen to assist with the conclusion of the school rebuild, the finalisation of the school’s alternative constitution and in the appointment of the successor to Ken Havill. I have a daughter in Year 9 and am committed to ensuring she and all the students and staff have a safe and productive environment at Springs.
John Loof (Current Board Member)
It has been a real privilege to have served on the WSC board for the past three years and an honour to be elected chair in early 2016. The selection of a new principal and the rebuild project are two significant challenges for our school. I am seeking re-election because I believe the best results will be achieved by having experience around the board table. As a parent with two children at Springs, I have the twin perspectives of seeing our school through the eyes of one boy in his final year and the other who has just begun his journey at the college. For our year 9 students the next few years will be a time of great change as they will see Auckland’s most modern school emerge as well as enjoying their final two years on a new campus.
The school rebuild has been something of an uphill battle but now that the budget is approved, the timeframe confirmed and the design is underway, our project is really starting to feel like it has some genuine momentum. I am certain that our whanau, students and staff can look ahead with confidence towards a new school which will have some of the best facilities in Auckland.
In recent times the board’s agenda has been a busy one, however it is really satisfying to see that our students have been able to maintain their excellent results in the classroom, the sports field and in their various artistic pursuits. This is a real credit to our Principal Ken Havill and his dedicated staff.
A school is more than just a collection of buildings and Springs is a special school with a unique character. The challenge ahead will be to ensure none of this character is lost as we transition into new facilities which will support the educational, sporting and cultural aspirations of our community.
Stephen May (Current Board Member)
Kia ora koutou. My name is Stephen May and I am Professor of Education in Te Puna Wananga (School of Maori Education) in the Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Auckland. I have been an elected parent representative on the WSC BoT since 2013 and wish to stand again. With the school rebuild now finally underway, and with the pending appointment of a new principal, this is a critical time for WSC. I am absolutely committed to WSC’s co-governance model with Nga Puna o Waiorea, to WSC’s progressive, liberal school ethos, and to ensuring its increasingly multiethnic school population continues to have the best education possible. As an educational expert, I bring my longstanding involvement in both Maori language education and mainstream education, and my strong interest in effective teaching and learning practices, particularly for students from diverse backgrounds, to the BoT. I also bring my commitment to this area and this school (where I once taught as a student teacher!). I live in Arch Hill, am married to Katie Fitzpatrick, and have one daughter already through WSC (Ella was in Year 13 last year), one daughter, Grace, now in Year 12, and my twin boys, Tom and Luke will be starting at WSC in 2018. I offer this background, along with my previous experience as Deputy Chair of the BoT of Knighton Normal Primary in Hamilton, to the BoT for these next crucial years of change and development at WSC.
Jan McCartney (Current Board Member)
- I am the parent of a student at Western Springs College. I am a current WSC Board member, a member of the Finance Committee, a member of the Fundraising Committee and the Board representative on TAPAC Board of Directors.
- I am a lawyer and a Queens Counsel and I practise in the areas of contract law, land law and human rights law. Through this work I have gained analytical skills that assist in bringing focus on the issues that the Board needs to get discussed and resolved.
- I have a commitment to the school culture as a bilingual unit espousing the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi and bringing out the best of each individual student.
- Over the past three years I have developed a good knowledge about the school’s affairs. It is in the interests of the school that this knowledge is available to the Board including during the development of the new school and in the appointment of a new principal.
- I am a director of a number of companies and chair of an arts collective. Through these positions I have developed contacts with businesses and other interested parties which will be helpful in getting the funds required for the development of a sports centre and performing arts centre. These developments will contribute to making Western Springs College one of the best schools in New Zealand.
- I seek to be entrusted with the appointment of an outstanding new principal to secure an inclusive and supportive culture at the school with the focus on excellent teaching, the students and the staff.
This school has a huge few years ahead and I’d be honoured to serve on the board. Finding a way when things are changing isn’t easy. Whether it’s buildings, technology, government policy, the new board needs a range of skills and committed people to ensure the school continues to deliver student achievement, keeps teachers motivated, provides visibility of progress to you, the community, and ensure all voices are heard.
So why me? We have a lot of skin in the game. I’m married to Rohan and we have three daughters. They were born in Sydney, but 6 years ago we came back to give them what you can only get here. Grace, our oldest will start at Springs next year and we will have children here for 7 years from 2017 to 2024.
If you’re reading this you probably like me, believe in the role of public education in ensuring our kids achieve their potential. Springs has a unique place in our community and its importance will grow through this rebuild, providing the foundation for kids to shine. Understanding and involving students and our community, and enabling staff to deliver has never been more important.
I’d like to help – to use my 25 years’ experience in business strategy and change, working in or for many different government and service organisations in several countries. I’ve learned to listen, be patient, and to be persistent, with skills in research, organisational performance, program design, business change, stakeholder engagement, facilitation and coaching. Today, I work 4 days a week in business transformation at Auckland Council, am a trustee of the Great Barrier Island Environmental Trust and am on the Aotea Conservation Park Advisory Board.
I also love this place. Mum grew up in a state house in Riro St Point Chev, and her aunties ran a shop in Old Mill Rd. As a kid I remember diving off the boathouse at Herne Bay, trolley buses, and yellow bulldozers on the tip as we drove out to Oratia along Meola Road to get fruit for bottling. The zoo gate was in Motions Rd by the old elephant house and me and 80,000 others saw David Bowie at the stadium in 6th form. Much has changed since, and it’s going to happen again in our lifetime. Our school has to be ready. Please allow me to represent you on the board.