NZSTA Governance framework

Anga Kāwanatanga

Effective governance and the NZSTA Governance framework 

The NZSTA Governance framework provides opportunity and guidance for your school board to achieve an effective governance approach for your school. 

Your board’s role is to be proactive in your decision-making and responsive in times of change. The ability to ensure effective relationships, set long-term vision, create and review enabling policy (in line with legislation as well as community aspirations), and monitor and review school performance, are key indicators of effective governance.  

Download the NZSTA Governance framework

We have updated the previous 2018 NZSTA Governance framework to include all 2020 legislative changes. To reflect this update, the framework is now simply called the NZSTA Governance Framework. 

You can find the NZSTA Governance framework here. Your board can download some, or all, of these sample documents in Word and add to, delete, or change them. 

You can also use the headings and other format cues as a template to create new policy for your board – all to suit your board’s own model of governance. 

What is a model of governance?

There are many ways to explain this. Just one example: how your board as governor, and your school’s management led by your principal, achieve better outcomes for all of your students. You do this by working together, and by understanding and respecting your different roles and responsibilities, as defined in your board’s governance framework. 

Scroll down for more information about how the NZSTA Governance framework works. 

For advice and support for your board, including how your board can use and adapt NZSTA Governance framework, contact our Advisory and Support Centre – details are at the bottom of this page.

How the NZSTA Governance framework works

Part A includes samples of some key board documents: an introduction to a board’s governance model, board workplan (which, together with your annual plan, implements your board’s charter / strategic plan), board member register and delegations list. Part A is also where you will attach your board’s charter/strategic and annual plan. These are unique to your board and reflect your school community.

Part B contains sample governance policies. It includes: board roles and responsibility, board code of conduct, conflict of interest and principal performance management. 

Part C contains sample policies that outline processes and procedures for your board. It includes: meeting protocols, meeting agenda and checklist, and meeting evaluation.

Part D has more detailed sample “operational” policies. It covers some critical areas of your school operations that your board needs more assurance about. Policies include: principal responsibilities, curriculum delivery, personnel and appointments, finance, health and safety, child protection, and concerns and complaints. 

Policy format

The policies in Parts B – D all follow the same format. Each policy has an outcome statement, scoping, expectations and limitations, and refers to relevant legislation. Some policies include key related school procedures, and the board’s monitoring and reporting expectations. In other policies, it will be for the board to enter its own documentation.  

Meeting legislative requirements 

It is important your board’s governance model stays within the legal framework for boards set out in the Education and Training Act 2020. Your board must meet these and all the other legislative requirements. These are noted in each of the NZSTA Governance Framework documents.

Professional learning and development for your board

NZSTA’s Learning and Development Team has an exciting learning programme of on-the-go resources and free nationwide workshops. These will support your board’s capability in effective, sustainable governance. Go to our Knowledge Hub to find out more!


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© 2018 New Zealand School Trustees Association