Mount Aspiring College (MAC) Principal Wayne Bosley announced his resignation to staff and students on Monday after twenty years as principal and deputy principal.
In a letter to parents, he wrote that “after much reflection I have made the significant decision that the time is right for me to resign as principal of Mount Aspiring College.
“I have informed the board of trustees [BOT] that I will continue to work through to the end of the school term and then be stepping down for the transition to a new leader,” he said.
His resignation comes just weeks after BOT chair Glenn Peat’s and parent representative Tracey Gibson’s, both of whom stepped down citing conflicts with the school’s leadership and direction - which have come under scrutiny since an Education Review Office [ERO} report in March deemed the school “developing.”
In the months since the report, two groups of parents have raised concerns about leadership issues at the school. A letter signed by 49 parents was sent to the Ministry of Education asking for an investigation into the lack of governance at the school following Peat’s resignation, and stating that parents wanted to “place firmly on the record a vote of no confidence in MAC’s board of trustees” - including the principal.
Issues raised in the letter included a lack of a stakeholder engagement plan and a lack of school leadership. This was further highlighted by several employment relations failures and non-disclosure agreements, the letter said.
Meanwhile, Parents of MAC had been liaising with Peat and the BOT to improve the board’s strategy and communication. Parent Aidan Craig told the Wānaka Sun that, while disappointed by Peat’s resignation after two months in post, he hoped it would be a catalyst for change. “Fundamentally, the culture is not working, and [the Ministry of Education and the BOT] need to recognise that,” he said.
The Ministry of Education is supporting the school to address issues raised in the ERO report, but parents feel the principal’s resignation will not provide a quick fix. BOT acting chairman Ed Nepia acknowledged in a statement that “there is much to be done in order to meet our shared goal of providing the best possible educational outcomes for our students and to make Mount Aspiring College the very best it can be.”
He also expressed "sincere gratitude" to Bosley for his service to the school. "Wayne has led Mount Aspiring College for 20 years and his contribution extends far beyond the physical campus," he said.
Read edition 976 of the Wānaka Sun here.