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Positive response to Trustee Elections

Media Release

Positive response to Trustee Elections

Organisers of the Trustee Elections campaign say most schools are positive about getting enough people to stand for their boards at this stage.

Election Project Manager Janet Kelly says schools are working very hard to ensure they have a good number of people willing to stand as trustees when nominations open next Friday (March 5).

“It’s very heartening that most schools feel that they will have good candidates, and we will be looking forward to seeing those names on the nomination papers during the nomination period which runs till March 19.

Janet Kelly says the trustee elections are a big and very important undertaking for schools, as a strong focused board will go a long way towards making a great school.

She says that while the great majority of schools are feeling optimistic, a few schools are struggling and will need extra help over the next few weeks. Schools that are unable to form a board may have a commissioner appointed to run it.

“Boards of trustees are the community’s voice in our schools and it is important that we make the most of it.

“Trustees ensure that their school reflect their community and their students. They are responsible for the governance and the vision of a school. They work with principals and staff to achieving that vision,” Janet Kelly says.

Most trustees are overwhelmingly positive about their role and would recommend it to others.

“The next few weeks are very important for our schools and we are asking people to seriously think about putting their names name forward on March 5. As the campaign message says – “stand and be counted – e tu tangata.”

About 20,000 candidates are needed to stand for 13,000 seats on boards of trustees in about 2,580 schools throughout the country. The trustee elections are New Zealand’s biggest democratic event.

The elections are held every three years and this is the sixth since the introduction of community-managed schools in 1989.

Nominations for trustees open on March 5 and close on March 19. Schools can choose when to hold their elections but most will use the common election date of April 2, 2004.

[ends]

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