25 Sep 2012

Turakina college governance criticised

8:27 am on 25 September 2012

A long-established Maori boarding school for girls has been given a mixed report by the Education Review Office.

The future of Turakina Maori Girls College in Marton, in the Rangitikei district, is at risk due to poor governance by its board, according to the report.

It says there's a lack of clarity about roles, responsibilities and communication processes, which is leading to inadequate governance at the boarding school.

The review office is recommending the Secretary of Education intervene, saying the school's board needs to improve its understanding of governance, and ensure trustees follow meeting protocol.

College principal Terehia Channings says a Crown advisor might be brought in to help.

She says it's unfortunate that there was only one board member in place when the Education Review Office report was carried out in May.

Since then board membership has grown from one to six representatives.

While the report contains criticism of the governance, the principal is commended for overseeing the curriculum well and for ensuring staff are committed to improving the students' results and wellbeing.

The report says more pupils are taking external exams which improves their preparation to achieve NCEA qualifications.

Mrs Channings says she brought in external assessments two years ago to stretch her students.

She says the college wants to produce graduates capable of becoming doctors or lawyers, professions which require high academic achievement.