The Springboard Trust Chair Ian Narev believes it is a critical right for young kiwis to have access to a great education regardless of their circumstance.

The Springboard Trust (SBT) is a unique charitable trust within New Zealand’s education sector working to improve student outcomes by assisting educational leaders and their communities grow in strategic, structured and scalable ways. Focused on enhancing the leadership and strategic planning skills of school principals, the Springboard Trust is creating more effective management of schools and – most importantly – better learning outcomes for students.

The trust is led by chair Ian Narev, a passionate advocate for education for all New Zealanders who believes young Kiwis should have access to a great education regardless of their financial circumstances or geographic location.

Ian believes “We all need to work towards better student achievement for all students throughout New Zealand, making sure that regardless of what environment they are growing up in – what neighbourhood they are growing up in, or what decile school they go to – they have an equal opportunity for a good education. This is a critical right. In order for New Zealand to be strong we need to do everything we can to help our young Kiwis get a good education.”

Thanks to its roots in the business community, SBT is able to connect and draw on a multitude of resources in order to focus on the essence of its model – “investing in frontline leadership” – delivering a suite of programmes that leverage, adapt and share best practices across sectors. To do this SBT works via capacity building and strategic partnerships within New Zealand’s corporate and philanthropic sectors and delivers four programmes including the Strategic Leadership for Principals Programme, the Alumni Learning Platform, the Schools@Heart Programme and the Learning Forum.

The Strategic Leadership for Principals Programme is designed to help principals develop robust strategic goals and plans for their organisations, and enable them to think more strategically about areas such as planning, resource allocation, staff engagement and stakeholder management. SLPP is taught via group workshops and requires principals to produce robust strategic plans for their respective schools. The initial curriculum was developed by Narev, who was previously a partner at management consulting firm McKinsey & Co and is now CEO of Commonwealth Bank of Australia, which has more than 50,000 employees. Subsequent contributors to the curriculum include Mark Russell, Michelle Kong and Jane Judd.

As part of their ongoing learning, alumni continue to work together as a ‘community of principals’ sharing their experiences and best practice models assisted by private sector experts.

The Springboard Trust initially concentrated its efforts on principals from low-decile schools in South Auckland, and has since expanded to include West Auckland and Northland schools. Planning is now underway to further expand into Waikato and the Bay of Plenty. In total, 84 school principals in Auckland and six in Northland have so far completed the trust’s year-long portal Strategic Leadership for Principals Programme.

With the continued support of its strategic partners and NEXT Foundation, the Springboard Trust plans to expand significantly over the next five years to work with a further 300 principals, ultimately impacting more than 70,000 students.

“The Springboard Trust has a simple philosophy: if we can help make principals more successful then we can help make schools and their students more successful.”