Tēnā koutou katoa
We have had a good start back to the academic year despite the uncertainties surrounding Covid-19. As a Board we enjoy seeing all the activities our students are involved in though our four pillars of activity – academic, sports, arts and culture and service. It is also a delight to see our young people taking on leadership roles, and at our first board meeting for the year we were introduced to the Prefect Team for 2021. We appreciated learning about their aspirations for their careers and about their various roles in the school. We often have ‘visitors’ – staff or students to our board meetings as it helps us to get a feel for the heartbeat of the college, and to learn what is working well and to learn what we might do to improve things.
The first meeting of the year normally has a very full agenda. We elected the Chair and Deputy Chair (Garry Good) and it was great to welcome back our other parent trustees for another year – Bob Slade, Megan Bolton, Nikki Simpson, our student representative Misipeka Ana and our staff representative Hanchen Johnson and of course our Tumuaki/Principal, Mr Congdon. We also renewed delegations and membership of the various board committees we serve on (Health and Safety, Property, Discipline, and Finance).
During the meeting we spent a considerable amount of time discussing the NCEA results from 2020. It is important to look back at these results and celebrate successes but also look to see how we can continue to lift student achievement. We never examine individual results at the board table instead we study aggregated analyses which enable us to drill down to look at differences in the data between year levels, gender, ethnicity and qualifications. When we meet with the Heads of Faculties we then discuss what can be learnt from last year’s results and what we can look forward with respect to teaching and learning at Horowhenua College in 2021 and beyond.
In addition to reviewing our Analysis of Variance document which examines the extent to which we achieved our strategic goals from 2020 we also confirmed the Horowhenua College Charter for 2021. Each year we develop new annual goals which align with our overall strategic goals. For 2021 these goals are focussed on pedagogy (teaching and learning), self review and community relationships. The first goal centres on continuing to develop relevant and innovative learning programmes, the second on developing processes of self review, and third on increasing connections with business and local community groups. Ultimately these goals are intended to improve the learning, wellbeing, opportunities and career pathways for our ākonga (students) and to further develop the school systems, procedures and relationships which sit around these.
We are looking forward to another year of working and learning as a school board and wish to thank you again for journeying with us to grow successful young people!