Make a Difference for our Schools
Are you passionate about the education of children in your community?
How about becoming a trustee and using your skills and experiences to help shape a positive future for our children?
What is a school board of trustees?
Every state and state-integrated school in New Zealand has a board of trustees. Boards bring families, communities and schools together to work for a quality education for our children.
The board of trustees is a Crown entity. It is the employer of all school staff and sets the school's overall strategic direction. The school's principal is the board's chief executive and manages the school operation in line with the board's policies.
What do trustees do?
School trustees have a very important role in making sure every child achieves their potential at school. Here are some of the things they do:
What sort of skills do trustees need?
Trustees are active leaders in their schools and need a balance of skills and experiences. They need to work well in a team, be able to put plans in place for the school's future, ask challenging questions and have good communications skills. It helps to have an understanding of financial matters and the education sector, and experience in managing people.
Who can become a trustee?
Parents, caregivers and people from the wider community can be nominated for election to a school board.
How do I become a trustee?
Ask your school about going along to a board meeting to see how it works. The board chairperson or any other board member can also answer questions about what the board does. Contact your school if you want to find out about standing for election, nominating someone else and voting in the election - they will be happy to help.
How is a board elected?
The school staff and parents elect boards of trustees every three years. The trustee elections are the biggest democratic event in New Zealand. Schools around the country seek more than 13,000 parent representatives. All parents of students enrolled full-time in a state or state-integrated school can and should vote in the elections for parent representatives.
What help do school trustees get?
Boards of trustees can get a lot of help in their important roles. There are training and development courses, local support services, the local office of the Ministry of Education gives support and advice, and the New Zealand School Trustees Association can provide free advice and support through their helpdesk advisory service.