WBHS meetings to be held throughout the week

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Several meetings may be held thoughout the week by the Waitaki Boys’ High School board of trustees to determine exactly what is happening at the school, chairman Garry McLeod says.

Mr McLeod said there may be several meetings held by the board and they would also be meeting with the New Zealand School Trustees Association to work through a number of complaints that had been received by the Ministry of Education.

This follows a meeting between the board and the Ministry of Education last Tuesday about concerns regarding student management and complaints received from the school community.

Mr McLeod said the board was frustrated with the lack of information they had received as they could not do anything until they knew what they were dealing with.

“We still haven’t received any information from the Ministry of Education.”

The board decided to involve the New Zealand School Trustees Association to discuss the situation, he said.

Ministry of Education head of sector enablement and support Katrina Casey said 17 parents, service providers, school staff and members of the wider community had contacted them to express concerns about the school.

“The themes of their concerns were student management, school communications, how concerns are managed by the school and the wellbeing of students and staff,” she said.

The ministry recommends concerns are raised with the schools involved first and if a complaint is received by the ministry, it is passed onto the school.

“Our expectation is that schools will promptly and effectively manage the complaints they receive, on the understanding that we are here to offer support if required,” Ms Casey said.

“In the case of Waitaki Boys’ High School, we are passing a number of complaints on to the school that have not already been received by them.

“We are committed to working closely with them until all issues of concern are resolved to the satisfaction of parents and the wider school community. “

At the meeting, it was agreed that the ministry would deliver training to the board and run a Positive Behaviour for Learning programme, which helped schools to take a proactive approach to managing student behaviour and improving learning environments for all teachers and staff, Ms Casey said.

“We would only consider statutory intervention if the board is unable to govern in some important respect.”