Media Release

Gisborne principals representing more than 2,400 children have been given a strategic boost after successfully completing Springboard Trust’s regional strategic leadership pilot.

The Strategic Leadership for Principals’ Programme (SLPP) is a unique professional development opportunity for principals. The free year-long programme sees principals matched with a senior business person within the private or public sector to develop robust strategic plans for their schools.

This year six principals have completed the strategic leadership programme and its benefits and results are speaking for themselves.

Awapuni School Principal David Langford said the SLPP has given him the opportunity to prioritise his learning and take a future focused approach.

“The impact of the programme has been that time to focus around strategy. The connections outside our school were also helpful as well as the provision of useful resources, presentations and excellent discussion” he says.

Principals found the facilitated planning workshops and working together in cohorts of six enhanced their learning opportunity.

Mangapapa School Principal Paul Sadler commented, “SLPP has been a great opportunity to connect with principals I have not connected with in the past. I feel privileged that I have been able to learn from and with them.”

Principals are supported between workshops by a skills volunteer called a capacity partner.

Paul Sadler was partnered with Gisborne District Council’s Group Planning and Development Manager, Nedine Thatcher-Swann. “Nedine interviewed me around my philosophy of education, asked question after question and dug deeper and deeper.”

Nedine commented her experience has been very valuable, “I am really grateful for the opportunity. It’s neat to know that there are some dedicated passionate principals out there looking after our children” she says.

Springboard Trust welcomes the cohort as alumni and as a result of the successful pilot will has enrolled a further six schools in 2017.


Back row: Steve Berezowski, David Langford, Peter Ferris, Andy Hayward, Judy Campbell (Gisborne District Council), Billie-Jean Potaka Ayton, Aaron Snodgrass (Eastland Group), Leighton Evans (Eastland Community Trust), Jasper Holdsworth (Pultron Composites)

Front Row: Angus Fletcher (The Flectcher Trust, Mike Torrie (BDO), Jane Judd, Debbie Herlihy (Springboard Trust), Lorraine Mentz (Springboard Trust), Nedine Thatcher-Swann (Gisborne District Council), Maxine Shortland (Ngati Hine Health Trust)


Jane Judd, Andy Hayward (Central School), Paul Sadler (Mangapapa School), Peter Ferris (Ilminster Intermediate), David Langford (Awapuni School), Steve Berezowski (Te Wharau School), Billie-Jean Potaka Ayton (Kaiti School), Debbie Herlihy

ASB ECT The Fletcher Trust Hugh Green Foundation Joice Fisher Charitable Trust Next FoundationRata Foundation