Our Board of Trustees

Every state school in New Zealand has a Board of Trustees usually made up of elected parent representatives, the Principal as the boards Chief executive, an elected staff representative, an elected student representative if the school has secondary students and co-opted trustees.

Boards of Trustees are accountable to whanau, local communities, the Minister of Education and the Ministry of Education and other agencies for their actions and performance. This accountability explains why the Educational Review Team (ERO) report to the board with regard to the progress of the school. Read our ERO Reports.

The board is responsible for school strategic and policy direction, ensuring student safety, quality education for students, and for overseeing management of curriculum, staff, property, finances and administration and also for the monitoring and reviewing against targets to inform planning.

We have a very active and engaged Board of Trustees that is representative of our community. We have one co-opted member, Makere Ranga, who represents and liaises with local Hapu and Iwi. We also have two further co-opted members who were co-opted for their digital and communications experience, Joe Hassell and Tara Wrigley. Co-opted members are full voting rights as per the elected board members. If you would like to contact our Board of Trustees, please email: boardoftrustees@raglanarea.school.nz

Follow this link to view a copy of our 2018 School Charter.

Our Current Board Members

Lisa Thomson

Lisa Thomson

Board Chair

Tena tatou katoa,
Ko Karioi te maunga
Ko Whaingaroa te moana
Ko Aotea te whenua
Ko Te Makaka take kainga tuturu
Ko Motakotako te marae
Ko Ngati Whakamarurangi Ko Ngati Mahanga – Hourua nga hapu

I am very lucky to live and work in Whaingaroa/Raglan, bringing up my children here and being actively involved in our diverse community. I feel very connected to the school. I am on the Raglan Swimming Club committee, which works in partnership with the school to provide swimming lessons to our community. I am currently Raglan representative on the Raglan Community Board and am on the board of Raglan Chamber of Commerce.

I currently co-manage the schools’ soccer team, which is a lot of fun. My daughter, Charlie is in year 12 and my son Karewa is in year 10, they both enjoy being active in the school and wider community.

I feel very passionate about our community, I believe that our rangatahi are incredibly special and am very privileged to work for the community as a trustee on the Board of Trustees.

Joe Hassell

Joe Hassell

Co-opted Member

Kia Ora Koutou, Whaingaroa stole my heart 11 years ago when Jenny and I moved here to make our home here on Wainui Road. We have three children, two of whom were born here in Whaingaroa. Our two eldest are both students at RAS and the youngest will join them soon!

The passion I feel for Raglan Area School is overwhelming. Having seen first hand the positive impact that schools can have on the community, I am brimming with enthusiasm to support RAS to continue to grow and deliver exceptional results to all students across the realms of cultural, academic and social well being. I recognise the value education brings not just to the students attending but to the entire community.

Professionally, my career has ranged from Software Development through to business management and sales where in my current role I manage the NZ operation for Actifio, a Boston-based software company. I work at home and travel frequently across NZ.

My youth was dominated by outdoor sports, like climbing and snowboarding. Outdoor Education was the saving grace that kept me at High School and afterwards I chose to pursue Snowboarding (primarily coaching) for several years before completing a BSc in Computer Science and Philosophy at the University of Canterbury.

I was the Student Rep on the BoT at Mt Aspiring College in Wanaka and head of the student council. I have been active as a director on several small companies over the years. In addition to very deep technology experience, my skills strengths include oration, critical analysis, negotiation.

The present and forecast growth in our community offers a huge opportunity. The RAS Board has the opportunity to show strong bold vision and leadership to guide our community to the next level of excellence with decisive decision making, informed but not ruled by data. I’m excited to help grow support for the school to unleash its potential to ensure Whaingaroa youth thrive, while also expanding on and continuing to serve the unique community values and needs of the families of Whaingaroa.

Tara Wrigley

Tara Wrigley

Co-opted Member

Kia ora koutou, I grew up in Paeroa just down the road, so even though I’m not a born and bred Raglan local, I am a Waikato girl through and through.

Ko Tainui te waka
Ko Moehau, ko Te Aroha ngā maunga
Ko Ohinemuri, ko Waihou, ko Piako ngā awa
Ko Tīkapa te moana
Ko Hauraki te whenua
Ko Marutuahu te tangata
Ko Ngati Tamatera te iwi
Ko Ngati Taharua, Ko Ngati Tawhaki ngā hapu
Ko Taharua te marae
Ko Taharua te whare tupuna
Ko Te Moananui te whanau
Ko Tara Wrigley taku ingoa

I’ve lived in Raglan for about 10 years and have a lovely partner Guillaume and 3 kids. 2 boys; Tawhia (13) and Sylvan (11) and Inès (6) all of whom are at Raglan Area School and they love it. 

There are so many great and unique things about our school; it’s amazing location, that it’s for Years 1 to 13, the school’s strong bi-cultural identity, and the fact that we don’t discriminate based on how smart you are, or how good at sports you are, or on how wealthy you are. There is much to celebrate about our school. And there are also areas for improvement.

As parents, it’s great to support local and I think most of us want to, but we also want to feel like we’re making the right decision for our kids and their futures. It’s one of those chicken and egg situations; the more of us who support the school, the better the school will be with more subject and sports choices. And ultimately, it’s better for our community too, because we’ll be turning out well-educated and well-rounded individuals. However we need to feel confidence in our school in order to send our kids there. 

The Board needs to set clear strategic objectives in it’s School Charter so that the Principal can put together an annual plan to meet those objectives. A couple of key objectives that I’m particularly focused on are:

– Improving parent engagement and communication – As parents we have the right to have input into our school and we need the school to give us opportunities to do that.

– A culturally responsive curriculum – To the benefit of ALL students. 

I have experience in strategic planning and communications. I currently work in client management for a software company based in Auckland. I’ve also worked in the advertising, PR, marketing and eCommerce fields. I am particularly interested in how technology and digital communication tools have the ability to aid communication, collaboration and connection. But I do think you can go too far with technology and deeply value face-to-face interactions as well.

With kindness, and hope, anticipation and excitement of what is yet to come. Nga mihi, Tara


Louisa Barham

Louisa Barham