St Canice's School

Our Board of Trustees
Leah Marris

Leah Marris

Principal

As the principal, I fully immerse myself in all areas of school, in governance, management, teaching and learning. I feel extremely privileged to be able to work with a supportive board who have a shared vision for the education and well-being of our tamariki. The cohesive governance team helps contribute to the whanaungatanga felt when you visit, work or learn in our kura.
Fr David Gruschow

Fr David Gruschow

Proprietor’s Representative

St Canice’s Parish owns St Canice’s School and so the Parish Priest has always been very involved in school life. One of my tasks is to be an ex officio member of the Board of Trustees. In the various parishes I have served in, I have generally been on the BOT of the parish school, and have been the chair on two occasions. I bring to our current BOT many years of experience on boards of trustees, and also, with the other proprietor’s representatives, a watching brief on the faith implications of what we discuss. I have also been a teacher, so am familiar with some of the challenges teachers face both in delivering the general curriculum, and in endeavoring to pass on the faith to our tamariki.
Claire Hart

Claire Hart

Parish Representative

I was invited to join the board by the parish priest and saw it as an opportunity to contribute to the school. I have had three children attend St Canice’s, joining the board was a way to show support for the principal, staff, students and parish. Being on the board is rewarding and I would recommend becoming a trustee.
Marie Ryan

Marie Ryan

Parish Representative

I am Mum to Caelan, an Irish Physiotherapist and have been living in Westport for the past 16 years. I have been part of the Parish community/family since then. I have been involved with St. Canice’s School since my son started school. I feel strongly about our children’s education and want to help in any way to shape and support their pathway at St. Canices’s. I am looking forward to continuing to work within the school Board of Trustees. I feel I have the knowledge and skills needed to support the school as I have been employed mainly with the West Coast DHB, and so I am extremely organised, a good listener and able to work well in a group setting. I have a strong work ethic. I am committed to helping maximise educational outcomes for our students.
Eric de Boer

Eric de Boer

Parent Representative

Our family has two children at St Canice’s; whom are thoroughly enjoying being part of a supportive and engaging learning environment. It is for those reasons I stepped forward to provide governance support and direction for the School Board of Trustees. We are committed to Westport and Buller’s future and firmly believe that for our community to prosper and grow we need to provide strong learning institutions to grow our Tamariki into well rounded individuals and our bright future.
St Canice’s has a strong faith based approach and I am delighted to be part of a School Board that continues to provide Trustee level governance for our School into the future.
Dylan Taylor

Dylan Taylor

Parent Representative

My wife and I have three daughters, two of whom currently attend St Canices School. Everyone can be proud of the nurturing environment that is a testament to the hard work of past and present staff, management and governance as well as the parents and children that make up our school community. My decision to join the Board of Trustees was underpinned by a willingness to share knowledge and skills for the betterment of our school community contributing to a team of likeminded people who strive for the best learning environment for our children. My experience includes senior leadership/management positions in the civil and construction industry over the past 10 years. These roles have provided me with the ability to think critically while also being able to relate well to people of all ages and backgrounds in order to achieve desired outcomes. Formal training completed has included leadership and governance courses.

Laura Coll-McLaughlin

Laura Coll-McLaughlin

Parent Representative

I am William’s mum and, since he started school, I have been so impressed with the strong sense of whanaungatanga and manaakitanga that we have experienced.
I attended St. Canice’s myself and my dad served on the Board of Trustees then so it’s a bit of a case of back to the future! I feel very honoured to now serve on the board myself and hope to support the positive culture of the school and contribute to the wellbeing of our tamariki.

Shannon Hollis

Parent Representative

I am born and raised in Westport and a previous St Canice’s School student, I attended Buller High School before departing for Christchurch in 2005 to attend the University of Canterbury to study a Bachelor of Law degree. Graduating in 2008 I returned to Westport where I work as Senior Associate Solicitor for Connors Legal.
My partner Josh, son Harry (2yo) and I live on family-owned rural property running a small number of sheep and cattle. Our cherished family time is spent enjoying the mountain bike trails and beaches that our beautiful district has to offer.
Brooke McDonnell

Brooke McDonnell

Staff Representative

As a teacher, I believe it is important to have knowledge of all areas of school life which has motivated me to join our school Board of Trustees. I am committed to ensuring our students receive the best education possible and I look forward to contributing to this through the Board.