Education Minister Chris Hipkins has announced the appointment of the new Chair to the Board of Trustees for Te Aho o Te Kura Pounamu (Te Kura) and has acknowledged the leadership of Dame Karen Sewell, who is stepping down from the role after seven years.
Barbara Ala'alatoa, the former Chair of the Education Council and member of the Tomorrow's Schools Independent Taskforce, has been appointed as a Te Kura Board of trustee member and will step into the Chair role in September 2019 when Dame Karen Sewell's term ends. Ms. Ala'alatoa has been the principal of Sylvia Park School in South Auckland since 2006.
"I am delighted with Barbara's appointment. Barbara is an outstanding educational leader who will take forward Te Kura's plans to lift achievement, wellbeing, and sense of belonging for students at our largest school," Chris Hipkins said.
"Barbara will bring to the board a wealth of experience in governance, primary education, and teacher training. Barbara also brings her cultural knowledge and understanding of the diverse student body enrolled in Te Kura.
Dame Karen Sewell has been Chair of Te Kura since 2012. During her tenure as Chair, she has helped the organization move to an online learning delivery model and new learning programs based on the Big Picture learning philosophy support those most at risk of leaving education.
"I would like to thank Dame Karen for the time and energy she has given to her role. The Board's accomplishments during her tenure have been immense due to the changes she has led in the education system and the passion that she has for education. Dame Karen has a strong commitment to improving educational outcomes for Māori and Pasifika students and her legacy will benefit Te Kura for many years into the future," Chris Hipkins said.
(With Inputs from New Zealand Government Press Release)